Tuesday, October 25, 2011

National Geographic Kid's On the Trail of Captain John Smith: A Jamestown Adventure "Game"

I personally e-mailed National Geographic to tell them how much I love this game and that I feel that they should make MORE of them! It is so much more than a game. It is a cartoon-style video of the story of Jamestown that follows the story of John Smith. There are eight mini episodes, and there are mini-games after six of the episodes. Students will learn something through every episode and every game - SO cool. Each mini episode is about 2-3 minutes long, and each mini game is about 1-2 minutes long. I had such a great time with this interactive activity that I decided to share it here before posting it to the website! Although it will be on the student history page soon, here is the link for those of you who would like it a bit sooner: http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/kids/games/interactiveadventures/john-smith/

Thursday, October 20, 2011

New History Activities! Early American Settlements and The First Thanksgiving

So, I got around to some of the history links sooner than I thought! I posted eleven new history activities on the student history page in a new section called Early American Settlements and The First Thanksgiving. The subjects of the activities include Pilgrims, Wampanoag Native Americans, the Mayflower, the First Thanksgiving, and more. There are even panoramic views of Plimoth Plantation and the inside of a Wampanoag home! I'm sure you and your students will love every activity!


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Free Plimoth Plantation Virtual Field Trips!

I have found so many amazing Alabama and American history resources in the last few days that it is absolutly overwhelmingly ridiculous. I cannot decide exactly how I want to post all of them on the website, because I can't decide if I want to make some of them in a TrackStar, if I should post them on the student page, or if I should post them on the teacher page. There are several resources coming, though!

In the meantime, Scholastic is offering FREE Plimoth Plantation Virtual Field Trips just in time for Thanksgiving 2011! And, yes, it is actually spelled P-l-i-m-o-t-h. The first one is November 2 at 1:00pm ET (2:00pm for all of you who are CT like me!) and is a tour of the Pilgrim Village. The second one is November 9 at 1:00pm ET/ 2:00pm CT and is a tour of the Wampanoag Homesite. The third one is a Webcast Replay on November 16 at 1:00pm ET/ 2:00pm CT. You will even receive a series of e-mails from a Pilgrim girl and a Wampanoag boy with your registration.

These virtual field trips will include daily life of the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag and interviews of the interpreters (actors) of Plimoth Plantation. I am SO excited to participate in these virtual field trips!

To register click here!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fire Safety Week!

Better Late than Never! Here is the link to the Fire Safety Week games I have posted on The Box of Crayons website: http://theboxofcrayons.com/younger_holidays.htm.

I enjoyed every single game (Yes, I played them all!). The first link I posted even has old school Sparky cartoons! If I were you, I would sooo be showing them to my class tomorrow...


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Poptropica Mystery Train Island Opens Tomorrow!

Poptropica, my favorite online kids' educational website, is opening its newest island, Mystery Train Island, TOMORROW OCTOBER 7! HOOOOOOORAY!

First of all, if you are an educator or parent and are one of those peoplewho does not encourage your students or kids to play Poptropica, you have not played it yourself. I've played them all! Every island requires critical thinking skills, and there is a lot of educational content that is learned through playing. I, myself, learned a great deal about history from Time Tangled Island and a lot about art from Counterfeit Island and on and on. Play, and encourage your kids to play. They will thank you for it, because they will only know they are playing.

Mystery Train Island proves to be no different. It is set on a train headed to the Chicago World's Fair of 1983, and the player's character must interview many famous people on the train. I played the "sneak preview," which is just a bit of the first part of the game for the island. From this preview I learned that not only does the player learn about the inner workings of a train during the industrial revolution, but also explores the cabins of Susan B. Anthony, Mark Twain, Thomas Edison, and more! The player's character interviews some of these famous people during the preview, but it is entirely possible that the player's character will get to speak with all of them in the full game!

Plus, there are some awesome costumes to costumize (In Poptropica, you can click on any article of clothing or hairstyle of story characters to wear them with the costumize feature) from this island. I have included a picture of how I've costumized from the preview.

I'm so excited!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

My Hope and Promise for Alabama History

So, I have been posting quite a lot in the last few days on the website. The more detailed posts have spilled over into this blog so that the website doesn't look like a cluttered activity chaos. Now that I look at the Alabama Course of Study Standards, though, I am realizing just how many activities I don't have for Alabama history. My hope and desire for my students and Alabama history is to hear the whispers of  "YES!" when it is time for Alabama History each day. I want them to be excited about it, and I want it, as with all subjects, to be so much more than a textbook. I may be slower in posting over the next few weeks for two reasons. One is that the resources I do have need to be reformatted, and I need to cite the sources for them before I post them for all of the world to see. The second reason is that I do not have activities for every single standard, but since that is my desire, I am going to try my very hardest to post at least one for each standard. I am hoping to post some math games sometime soon, too, so keep checking back at theboxofcrayons.com for more resources in the "Stuff for Teachers" section!