Students love Google. It is usually their first site of choice when searching for just about anything, no matter how much we stress the value of district databases. What's a teacher to do?Google Custom Search puts only the sites you choose into a search engine designed specifically for your students and a specific project. Research is more focused yet still provides students with opportunities to develop their research skills. Here is an example of a simple custom search engine that students could use for researching Civil War battlegrounds. It has been embedded here, but can also be accessed by clicking this link. Try it. There are only three sites that the results should be pulled from. Click the X to clear the search results and continue reading.
You can download these instructions as well.
Website of the WeekRichard Byrne who created the tutorial above has a great Free Technology for Teachers blog that is full of resources. I especially like his Google tutorials.
Something FunClasstools.net has added a new tool that is sure to get your students chatting. Its a Fake SMS message generator that can be saved with a password and edited later.
After saving, grab the code to embed the SMS into a flipchart, blog or website. When the password is entered, students can continue the conversation by clicking the left and right chat buttons beneath the chat window.
Here's a sample. Scroll down and click the pencil/bubble tool to begin. The password is 12345. You can edit and delete the existing messages and move them around. How can you use this in your classroom?