There are so many sites out there for teachers now, where you can download and upload everything and anything you’ll ever need as a teacher, from lesson plans, to posters, displays, games, worksheets, presentations and things to help with management and behaviour.
I have some favourites that I’ve used over the years, including enchanted learning, teach this, Sparklebox, TES Australia and of course Teachers Pay Teachers. Some have account fees and membership deals, some have free membership or free limited membership, some you earn points to allow you to download.
A favourite at the moment is education.com (such a great domain name to snap up!)
The free membership account lets you download 10 single resources a month (not sets or booklets), which is a great way to trial the website out before signing up for a year or monthly membership with more features.
I really like that you can see a preview before you download the resource you want. Education.com has well-designed and interesting looking pages (nothing worse than downloading a document that you haven’t been allowed to preview only to find it is in size 10 Times New Roman font)
I’m a fan (and have reached my 10 limits this month already!).
What are your favourite resource sites for teachers?
If you haven’t already visited this site I highly recommend it. Teachers pay Teachers is described as ‘An open marketplace for educators where teachers buy, sell and share original teaching resources’. Teachers and educators can set up an account and post products and digital files for others to buy.
Each user who sells an item receives a profit straight into their bank account. The interface is easy to navigate, with many search options to help find what you need. Each item has a description, thumbnails so you can get some idea of what you are buying and a preview file. You can opt to make your product free too.
There are a lot of users on Teachers Pay Teachers who are making a small income through their site and many users are seeing the benefits in linking their TpT site with their blogs, twitter and Pinterest accounts too.
It’s great for finding colourful, useful classroom displays that other teachers have lovingly created when you simply don’t have time to construct them yourselves. And at only $2-$10 in price, its seems like such a bargain compared to paying four times that amount for commercially produced items. Not to mention feeling good that another teacher is receiving the payment. Those who work in the profession understand the lengths teachers go to with making and designing things for the classroom, so it’s nice to give something back to the educational community.
I hope to post a lot more items into my Teachers Pay Teachers store in 2013. Here are some of my items that are there already, with a link to TpT.
‘Walt and Wilf’ Posters for Learning Intentions and Success Criteria $2.00
‘Behaviour Train’ Classroom management system $4.00
‘Mr Edit and Friends’ Posters to assist students with editing and proofreading $4.00
And here are some other great Teachers Pay Teachers stores!
‘Permanently Primary‘ by Sarah Kirby
‘From The Pond’ by an Australian teacher
‘Adrian Bruce’ by another fantastic Australian teacher and blogger
‘Fuglefun’ a great site for art resources.
Each month in my classroom we have a quote that is on display. I chose a range of quotes where the message can be related in a classroom setting, either in terms of learning, socialising with others, striving for success, attitude, etc.
We also discuss who said the quote so some background knowledge can be developed, as students learn a little about some of history’s most prominent characters.
I refer to the quote throughout the month, where relevant. You can also use the Quote of the Month for extension tasks. Students can;
– research more about the person to which the quote is attributed
– find other quotes that are similar or are by the same person
– make their own display, bookmark, artwork etc for the quote.
With the quote I sometimes use it as a sentence of the day study, analysing punctuation, grammar and vocabulary, or even get the students to write and illustrate the quote in their handwriting or publishing book.
Here are some samples of the quotes I have used.
To download 20 readymade posters with quotes, click here.
To find more quotes online for students, click here, here and here.
One of the best resources on the internet where you can find games and activities for all topics is the Woodlands Junior School in Kent, UK. On their homepage you will find heaps of links – to the Maths Zone, Literacy Zone, Homework Help Page, as well as links for Science, Geography and History.
Its a great place to start when you are looking for an interactive activity to use during group time or as a whole class on the IWB. The information in the Homework Help section is clearly laid out and easy for students to read, making it a great site for research.
An alternative Australian website is the Get Smart Page at Copacabana Public School’s Website. The Copacabana homepage also has links to a range of Web 2.0 tools and presentations for Smart Notebook software.
Both of these sites are in my Bookmarks, but it’s also easy to get older children to just google ‘woodlands school’ or ‘copacabana public school’.
As part of my literacy groups I have a group that works on spelling activities, with their current spelling list. So what do they do each week? I wanted something fun, engaging, easy to organise, no hours of creating worksheets, simple to mark (if any) and independent.
After trawling the internet and thinking creatively I came up with these Spelling Activity Cards. The group gets the card and equipment, brings their spelling book and Voila! Ready made spelling activity.
There are 42 different activities, most able to be used with classes from Year 1 to 6. At the beginning of the year I use them with the whole class, as a modelling activity. It’s helpful to do this the week before they have to do it independently, especially with younger students.
Here are some images of some of the cards and students completing the different activities.
And here is a link to the actual spelling cards
Spelling Activity Cards
What other ideas do people use to practice spelling?
I bought these cardboard folded ‘Study Boxes’ (as I call them) from Kangaroo supplies. They have been great at minimising distractions, especially during times of high stress – tests, maths assessment tasks and writing.
There are two options for use, you can nominate to need a Study Box, or I can nominate you to need one. A few boxes scattered around the room can reduce noise and keep a lot of the boys on task.
You could easily make these too, in the past I’ve used two manila folders open on the desk, but these commercially made ones are quite sturdy and hopefully will last me years.