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Colorado Thinkfinity

40 Posts authored by: leslie.a.brown

RWT trading card tool.jpegReadWriteThink has a student interactive tool that helps students create character trading cards to demonstrate their literacy knowledge and skills, and to engage in meaningful literary practices.  Specific prompts ask students to describe the character, look at his or her thoughts and feelings, explore how he or she develops, identify important thoughts and actions, and make personal connections to the character.  After you print and illustrate your card, will you keep it or trade it?


This is a fun activity with lesson plans designed for Grades 3-12.  Click here to get started.


For ideas of how to use this tool outside the classroom, see Character Trading Cards in the Parent & Afterschool Resources section.


Attached to this post is a planning sheet to help students to draft and revise their work before going online to use the interactive.


Flash Player required.

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Now you can experience the professional development knowledge of the 2011 International Reading Association (IRA) Teaching Edge Speaker Series at home.


This new series promises more than just professional development. Teaching Edge connects you with the real superstars of the literacy world. These intensive sessions will boost your knowledge, expand your abilities, and make you eager to return to the classroom to put it all into practice.  Listed below are the topics available for purchase.


I do it. We do it. We do it. We do it. You do it.
Regie Routman


The Literacy Jigsaw: Practical Implementation of the Critical Pieces

Beverly Tyner


Research Based Principles for Reading at Grade Level

Richard Allington


For interviews with the authors, topic descriptions, and prices, go directly to IRA's Teaching Edge site by clicking here.

SCI lesson logo.jpgWith summer here, it is important to always wear sunscreen while outdoors at any age.  Science NetLinks presents a lesson plan on Skin Cancer 1: Exposing Healthy Skin to the Sun.  The purpose of this exercise is to develop an understanding of the science behind keeping skin healthy, including how it functions to protect the body and what can be done to protect skin cells from mutations caused by excessive sun exposure.


If you like part 1, here's the link to Skin Cancer 2: Types, Prevention, and Detection that explores what happens when healthy skin cells mutate and grow uncontrollably, leading to skin cancer.


These lessons are part of the Skin Deep Project, which examines the science behind skin and provides more lessons, activities, and interactives that take a closer look at the science behind skin.

NCFL Logo.jpgThe National Center for Family Literacy (NCFL) has created free online resources to inspire Hispanic families to start talking about college as a reality, not a faraway dream. These materials will help families begin the conversations about going to college, preparing for academic success and planting the seed for their children that they should go to college.


Click below and learn about NCFL's new free online resources designed to help Hispanic families start talking about college!

NCFL College Resources for Hispanic families

BBreadingWH.jpgThe Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy has announced its 2012 National Grant Competition for programs supporting the development of literacy skills for adult primary caregivers and their children.


Organizations must meet the following criteria for grant consideration:

  • The organization must have current nonprofit or public status and must have been in existence for two or more years as of the date of the application. 
  • The organization must have maintained fiscal accountability. 
  • The organization must operate an instructional literacy program that has been in existence for at least two years and must include one or more of the following components: literacy for adults, parent education, pre-literacy or literacy instruction for children pre-k to grade 3, intergenerational literacy activities.


The foundation will award approximately $650,000. No grant request should exceed $65,000.


Applications are due September 9, 2011.

To learn more, visit the foundation’s website for instructions and application guidelines.

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The Council for Economic Education is pleased to announce the formation and development of the new HSBC National Center for Economic and Financial Education.  These free workshop are promoting the importance of K-12 economic, financial, and entrepreneurship education in the United States and internationally.  The Center will also showcase instructional materials, training programs, and state-of-the-art approaches to K-12 economic, personal finance, and entrepreneurship education.


First class is

July 6-7The 2007-2009 Financial Crisis: Visiting Wall Street to Hear the Real Story
(Must attend both days)
PresentersRich MacDonald, St. Cloud State University, Minnesota, Council for Economic Education
Speakers at: New York Fed, American Museum of Finance, NYSE
AudienceGrades 9-12 recommended


Click the link below for a complete list of workshops and dates for the summer.

2011 Summer Professional Development Workshops

NCGE conference logo 3.jpgThe National Council of Geographic Education (NCGE) is celebrating 25 Years of the Alliance Network and is compiling a "collection of memories" photo album that will be presented to Gil Grosvenor in August.  If you ever participated in Alliance and/or National geography education events—anytime from 1986 to the present, and in any capacity—they need a photo of you and that experience!


See the attached file for instructions on how to submit your photo.


Click here if you would like to learn more about the 2011 Conference being held in Portland, Oregon August 2-7, 2011.

Watch this trailer and Capella University will donate $0.50 to education programs worldwide.

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The First Grader — Make a Difference

It was as simple as clicking on the link above to view the 2 minute trailer video on YouTube.

The movie is a true story of an 84 year-old Kenyan villager and ex Mau Mau freedom fighter who fights for his right to go to school for the first time to get the education he could never afford.


EconEdLink provides Economics and Personal Finance resources for grades K-12 in three main categories: Educators, Students, and Afterschool. Recently they launched a new lesson plan entitled “Baseball Economics 201." By going through the activities you can answer questions like:

  • What is the average salary of a Major League Baseball (MLB) player?
  • Besides ticket sales, what are other MLB revenue sources?
  • By using economic reasoning, are MLB players being overpaid?
  • How do MLB team owners stay in business when their teams appear to be losing money?

The website has interactive pre- and post-tests that discuss what you will or have learned, four activities, and additional resources.


Get started by following the link below.

Baseball Economics 201


Lesson Plans available for Grades: 6-8, 9-12


KEY CONCEPTS: Factors of Production, Incentive, Marginal Resource Product, Profit Maximization

ReadWriteThink’s newly improved interactive tool allows you to learn about, create, save, and print a diamante poem. You may ask “What is a diamante poem?” A diamante is a diamond-shaped poem that uses nouns, adjectives, and gerunds to describe either one central topic or two opposing topics.

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Follow the link below to get started.

Diamante Poem


Share your best poem. See mine below.


Appropriate for all school ages and requires Flash Player.

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