Google My Maps – Learning for the Year

I wish I had started this early in the year, but now I have something to try and get teachers to use next year!

Google My Maps (Introduction here) allows you to create your own maps and add content like placemarks, draw lines and shapes, organize with layers, and style the content.

One of our state social studies standards that goes through almost every grade level is constructing maps and charts to display geographic data. My Maps allows students to that easily.

It would be great if students created map that had geographic data for the entire year. They could put placemarks in for each subject and add it to the map to see connections between subjects. Below is a “6th Grade” map that has placemarks from some of our first quarter curriculum maps!


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Edgar Allan Poe Resources

Here are some links to resources about Edgar Allan Poe.

Discovery Streaming Video: “Great Books: Tales of Edgar Allen Poe” (27 minutes) – (You must sign in with the class Discovery Streaming user name and password)

“The Pit and the Pendulum” – Story and Audio Narration from

“The Tell-Tale Heart” – Story and Audio Narration from

Selected works from the Poe Museum

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Picture Stories

Today in class we watched a video shot completely on a cell phone. It won awards. It’s embedded below in this post.

I thought the way the video was set up was great. It used pictures of words to tell a story. I think this would be a great way for us to share stories in reading class.

If your taking pictures over the break with a digital camera or a cell phone, take some of different words. We will put all the word pictures together on flickr and use them to make stories.

If you are not in our class and want to contribute your pictures, visit this wiki page for more information:

Here is the video we watched and another one that uses the same type of storytelling. Enjoy, and go take some pictures of words!

“Mankind is No Island” –

The Girl Effect” -

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Reading Buddies

On half-day Fridays, we have Reading Buddies with Ms. Mumford’s kindergarten class. Over these last few weeks we have taken a book they made and turned it into a VoiceThread. We are still working on it, so there will be audio comments on all of the pages within the next few weeks.

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Why do you write?

It’s an odd idea for someone like me to keep a diary; not only because I have never done so before, but because it seems to me that neither I — nor for that matter anyone else — will be interested in the unbosomings of a thirteen-year- old schoolgirl. Still, what does that matter? I want to write, but more than that, I want to bring out all kinds of things that lie buried deep in my heart.”

Yes, there is no doubt that paper is patient and as I don’t intend to show this cardboard-covered notebook, bearing the proud name of “diary,” to anyone, unless I find a real friend, boy or girl, probably nobody cares.”

Where are these quotes from? Saturday, the 2oth of June, 1942 – The Diary of Anne Frank.

The book is now considered one of the key texts of the twentieth century. As of 2004, more than 25 million copies of the book had been sold; the book had also been translated into more than 50 languages.

Why do you write?

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