• Thinkfinity

    Web sites recommended by Instructor magazine:

    Take a trip with NASA
    Visible Earth is home to NASA's catalog of images and animations of the Earth from outer space. Kids can see photos of city lights around the world, smoke trails from California fires, flooding in the Midwest, pollution over Beijing, etc.

    National Geographic's Map Machine
    An online atlas with amazing features including interactive capabilities.

    Native American Storytellers
    Students can hear Native Americans tell tales about traditions in the kitchen, Navajo beliefs and the sacred relationship with the land. "The Water Song" has one man singing about his international activism and dedication to environmental protection. Students can become members of the storytelling community by submitting their own stories. Students can also correspond with storytellers over email and ask questions of their own.

    "I Have a Dream" Speech
    16 minute video podcast of Martin Luther King's speech given at the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963.

    A free project by the Univ. of Illinois. Allows students to come with their own experiments, view bug specimens at high magnification and talk about what they see with real scientists in real time. You can sign up, mail bugs to Bugscope and a scientist will magnify your bugs, discuss what is being viewed, and answer students' questions during a two hour online session.

    Thomas Edison
    Kids can play interactive matching games to learn more about Edison's life and inventions. They can learn how to make their own light bulb and listen to a recreation of Edison's first recording on the phonograph.

    Some interesting web sites that have been recommended and annotated by School Library Journal. Please note there are several sites that will coordinate with use of our Nature Park.

    H.I.P. Pocket Change
    (Grades K-4) Coins are for more than just collecting at this activity-filled site. Kids can watch "Birth of a Coin," play a Presidential Portraits game, or dive into history with the interactive time machine, where commemorative coins spur cartoon investigations of the past. Included information on the branches of the government, international coins, and the U.S. Mint locations.

    Panwapa: Where Kids Shape the World
    (Grades K-2) Based on a new PBS program, games, movie play-alongs, collector type avatars, kids can explore the differences and similarities among their worldwide peers.

    Wild Music (Science Museum of Minnesota)
    (Grades 2-5) Music can be inspired by nature and created in the natural world. Interactive site delves into animal communication, science behind sound and current research on the topic. Kids can test their hearing and compare it with that of babies and animals as well as design soundscapes and learn how to make instruments.

    Injury Prevention for Kids (Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh)
    (Grades 2-5) Safety tips on everything from avoiding frostbite to using the Internet wisely. Easy to access information with quizzes, pages to color and cartoon movies.

    Out on a Limb: A Guide to Getting Along (University of Illinois Extension)
    (Grades K-3) Narrated slideshow that shows the three ways to handle disagreements: the loud way, the soft way and the think and share choice. Kids can explore each of these methods as well as learn the importance of listening and different perspectives through guided cartoon situations.

    BookPALS Storyline Online (Screen Actors Guild Foundation)
    (Grades K-3) Celebrities including Al Gore lend their voices to this collection of streaming video picture-book readings. 21 stories are accompanied by activity guides include Guji-Guji, Stellaluna and The Polar Express.

    Environmental Education for Kids! Autumn Scavenger Hunt (Wisconsin Dept. of Natural Resources)
    (Grades 1-4) Information on leaves, butterflies, Canada geese, grey squirrel. Visit local DNR for information closer to home

    What's it Like Where You Live? Temperate Deciduous Forest (Missouri Botanical Garden)
    (Grades K-5) Deciduous forests described in simple language with information on causes behind season changes, varying colors of leaves and animals that live in the forest.

    For Teachers:

    The Miracle of Fall (University of Illinois Extension)
    List of sites that link to picture galleries, slideshows and activities along with information on fall foliage and leaves, winterizing plants, harvest foods, event listings from each state

    Nature in Your Backyard (SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry)
    2-minute videos, narrated by an interpretive naturalist, educate elementary students on familiar northeastern animals and environments and include "Fall Foliage", "Groundhogs and Hibernation," and "Monarch Butterflies."

    North American Bear Center
    Dedicated to the protection of bears and education of the public, provides everything anyone ever wanted to know about bears. Includes scientific facts, slideshows, and videos that can be played from the site or downloaded.