Thursday, February 28, 2013

Favorite Creative Based Websites for Teachers

I love using the internet to inspire creative ideas and find unique lesson plans and classroom ideas. Here are some of my favorite sites that inspire my creative and help me plan hands on, artistic lessons for my students.

Most of you have probably already discovered Pinterest but since it is one of my favorite sites for creative ideas, it is at the top of my list. Pinterest is a wonderful place to share creative ideas and find new ones. Following other teachers with similar classes helps me get great ideas and I have gotten many compliments on lessons that I have used that were inspired by Pinterest. If you haven't used Pinterest yet, I highly recommend you check it out!

I also love the art lessons available on Dick Blick's art website. Although the lessons are intended to advertise the products they sell, you can use what you have available to you in your classroom and substitute materials as needed for most projects. If you teach social studies and need a lesson to tie into a particular culture, there are wonderful resources for that on the site as well. I love that many of the art lessons also have video instructions that are very clear and make it easy to follow along.

Artsonia bills itself as the "world's largest kids' art museum" and that statement isn't too much of an exaggeration! On Artsonia you can post your students' artwork online for free. As you continue to add artwork to your site, students develop an online art portfolio. You can either use students' first names or have your students create user names for the site. Also, if parents or guardians love their child's artwork they may wish to purchase it on a t-shirt or some other item as well. If this happens, your school will get 15% of the proceeds! It is very easy to use and although it can be a little time consuming, it is very rewarding and I have gotten many compliments when using it. Students also love seeing how many people have viewed their artwork!

If you have not tried Discovery School's Puzzlemaker, that is an easy way to make learning fun in your classroom. They have many different puzzles you can customize and use in your classroom. I have used them many times and my students have enjoyed the results. The puzzles are great for reviewing vocabulary or for giving to fast finishing students as well.

I hope you enjoy some of the creative ideas that can be found in the websites above and hope you discover something new!

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