Showing posts with label Online Games. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Online Games. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Five Fun Breakout Games for Online and In-person Classrooms

Disclosure: Breakout EDU is an advertiser on FreeTech4Teachers.com. 

Like a lot of teachers, one of my biggest challenges last year was building a sense of community in my classroom. Without having more than half of my students in my physical classroom for more than a few days before we went back to online or hybrid instruction, it was hard for students to get to know each other. That said, there was one thing that helped build community more than any other. That was having students work together to solve challenges. At times I did that through game play and other times through completing troubleshooting challenges.

Breakout games, specifically Breakout EDU games, provide fun challenges for students to solve together. In solving those challenges together students begin to learn about each other and a sense of community and collaboration begins to build.

What is Breakout EDU?
Breakout EDU is a platform for finding and playing collaborative problem-solving games. There are Breakout EDU games that can be played in-person and games that can be played online.

Breakout EDU started as a service that offered kits of physical lock boxes that students would unlock by solving challenges. Those are still offered by Breakout EDU and you can find them on the Breakout EDU website by searching for games that have the “Kit” label.

Today, Breakout EDU also offers digital games. These are the games that you’ll want to try if you don’t have a physical Breakout EDU kit and or you’re searching for games your students can play online. You’ll find those games by selecting the “Digital” label when browsing through the games available on Breakout EDU. Take a look at my short video here to learn how to find Breakout EDU games for your students to play.

Whether your students play online or in-person versions of Breakout EDU they’ll have to use their best logical reasoning skills to solve the challenge of the game. All games start with a story or a premise for a series of challenges. The challenges are to unlock the locks (physical or digital) by cracking a code to find the numerical combination and or word that unlocks the locks. You should try to crack the codes yourself before assigning the games to your students. But if you need a little help, Breakout EDU does provide answer sheets for you to consult.

How to Use Breakout EDU
Breakout EDU’s digital games can be distributed to your students through an online classroom. You can create a Breakout EDU online classroom by importing your Google Classroom roster or by manually making a list of student names. Either way, students will have a class code to enter to join your classroom and they don’t need email addresses in order to play the digital Breakout EDU games.



Five Fun Breakout EDU Games for Team Building
Breakout EDU has an entire category of games designed for team building. Within that category you’ll find forty games designed for online play by elementary school, middle school, and high school students. Here are my picks for digital Breakout EDU games for team building.

Breakout the Zoom is a digital game that can be played by elementary, middle, and high school students. The premise of this game is that students are stuck in Zoomland where they can neither get into nor out of a Zoom meeting. Students have to figure out the solutions to scenarios to get the Zoom meeting working again.

Raiders of the Lost Locker will strike feelings of nostalgia into any teacher who grew up watching movies in the 1980’s. In this game designed for middle school and high school students players try to open student lockers that have been stuck shut for 60 years. After the game use the discussion questions to get your students thinking and talking about what they think school was like for their grandparents or great-grandparents.

Mission Nutrition is a digital Breakout EDU game for elementary school and middle school students. Solving the challenges of the game reinforces concepts about creating healthy, balanced meals. I like this game because it puts a fun spin on a topic that some students might otherwise find kind of boring.

Breakout the Beat is another digital Breakout EDU game that might stir some feelings of nostalgia in you as you assign the game to your students. In this game for elementary and middle school students they have to find the clues hidden in a teacher’s collection of “oldies” music to unlock some modern dance tunes. You could have your students play this game as is or you could copy and modify it to include some “oldies” of your own (young teachers, even the music you listened to in high school is “old” to your students today).

Spidey Goes to Class is made for early elementary school students to try their hand at playing Breakout EDU. In this game students work together to help “Spidey” unlock the things that he needs to put in his backpack for school.

Register for Breakout EDU Today!
You can try out all of these Breakout EDU games and hundreds more when you register for a free account. During the first two weeks you can try all of the games. After that you can access them all with a subscription to Breakout EDU.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

How to Play Kahoot Games in Google Classroom

As I do every year, I'm taking this week off from writing new blog posts. This week I'll be re-running a few of the most popular posts in 2020. 

This is the time of year when many of us are looking for fun ways to conduct end-of-year review sessions with our students. Playing Kahoot quiz games is one of the most popular means of doing that. Kahoot games are fun to play in a classroom and you can also use them for remote learning activities by using the "challenge" mode.

The challenge mode in Kahoot enables you to assign games to your students to play at home on their schedule. There are many ways that you can distribute the challenges to your students. If you're a Google Classroom user, you can distribute your challenges through your Classroom just like you would any other announcement or assignment. Your students then just click on the link to your Kahoot game to start playing it.

In the following video I demonstrate how to distribute Kahoot games through Google Classroom and how students can play those games right from the Announcements stream in Google Classroom.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Doozy - Create and Play Fun and Educational Quiz Games

Doozy is a neat service for creating online quiz games that you can share with anyone and they can play without having to register for an account. The quiz games that you create on Doozy can be multiple choice or short answer questions. The games that you make can, and probably should, include pictures as part of your questions. Doozy quiz games can be played individually and in teams.

The best way to understand how Doozy works is to just go to the site and select a game to play by yourself. (If you're of my generation, take a crack at the 1980's movie trivia game). You can play any of the games in the public gallery on your own and get a score at the end.

To create a game on Doozy you can either modify one of the existing games on the site or create a game from scratch. To create a game from scratch just click the "create" button on the home page and then title your quiz game, upload a cover image, and start adding questions. Whether you use multiple choice or short answer questions you do need to include a correct answer for each question. When you have finished creating your Doozy quiz game you can share it by clicking the "run quiz" option. Clicking "run quiz" will create a game pin that you can share with others to enter at Doozy.live to play the game.

Doozy games can be played in teams. To play in teams one player has to choose a game to join then select "play with friends." That selection will then generate a unique link to share with teammates.

Applications for Education
Doozy doesn't require players to register to play the games which makes it quick and easy to get a group of students playing your quiz game in your classroom or in a Zoom or Google Meet call. Doozy doesn't offer any options for you to track your students' scores so playing games in Doozy is purely a review or practice activity.

If your students are over 13, you might consider having them create their own Doozy games to share and show what they know about a topic.

I discovered Doozy through one of Larry Ferlazzo's recent Ed Tech Digest posts. If you don't follow Larry's blog, you should. 

Monday, January 20, 2020

How to Create an Online Sorting Activity Using Google Sheets

Flippity is a great source of templates for making online games, flashcards, and quizzes. Recently, Flippity added a new template that makes it easy to create an online sorting activity based on information you provide in a Google Sheet.

Flippity's newest template is called Manipulatives. The template lets you create an online activity in which students sort items into categories. You can have students sort items into columns, grids, Venn diagrams, and even into regions of a map. In the following video I demonstrate how to use Flippity Manipulatives to create an online sorting activity.



Applications for Education
As is demonstrated in the video above, you can use just about any image as the background in your sorting activities. To that end, I can see the template being useful for creating activities in which students have to match terms to parts of a diagram. For example, you might use a plant cell as the background then have students drag the names of the corresponding parts into their correct places on the diagram.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Seterra - Hundreds of Interactive Geography Games in More Than 30 Languages

Seterra is a service that offers interactive geography games in more than thirty languages. I used the service for years with some of my own students. In the last couple of years Seterra has evolved from a desktop application to a web and mobile app service. You can play Seterra games in the web browser on your computer or as an Android app or an iOS app.

The best way to explore Seterra's offerings is to head to the online games page. On that page you can browse for games according to continent and country. On Seterra's online games page you will find games that students can play to learn and quiz themselves about capitals, bodies of water, waterways, flags, country names, states, provinces, regions, and notable cities. And if you need an offline activity, Seterra lists some printables below all of the games on their individual pages.

Seterra has a couple of great features that enhance their online and mobile games. There is an option that will read aloud the names of the countries, cities, states, and provinces that students are asked to identify in the game. That option is listed just below each online game. Students can turn on or turn off the read-aloud option at any time. Seterra's games also have a "review" mode that lets students practice only the items that they missed in their first attempts at a game.

Applications for Education
The reason that I like Seterra is that in addition to the wide array of games, more than 200 available for free, there is a variety within each game. Each game can be played as an identification game, as a labeling game, or as a matching game. In the simple identification mode, called "Pin" mode, students simply click on the locations of the places they're asked to identify. The labeling version of a game is found by selecting "type" mode. In that mode students have to type on the map to identify places. And in the matching mode called "place the labels" students have to match place names to the places indicated by pins on the map.

When you open Seterra in your web browser the games should default to match the language preference you have set in your browser. However, if you want to change the language in which you play the game, you can do that at the home page of Online.Seterra.com.

Disclosure: Seterra is an advertiser on FreeTech4Teachers.com

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

A Great Example of a Teacher and Student Working Together

A couple of years ago I was contacted by a teacher just down the road from me in Portland, Maine who had developed an online geography game with the help of one of his students. That game was called GameOn World and it is still going strong today. In fact, they continued to work on it and it is was recently one of the sites that I include in my best of the web presentation.

GameOn World is played in a manner similar to Kahoot. The teacher projects the game questions on a screen and students reply from their phones, tablets, or laptops. One of the convenient features of GameOn World is that you don't have to create an account in order to start playing fun geography and history games with your students. In GameOn World the teacher selects a game category (cities, places, and timeline are a few of the categories) and starts the game. The students join the game by going to GameOn.World and entering a game pin. In the location and timeline games, students answer the questions by moving a placemark on a map or selecting a date on a timeline. In some of the other games students answer by choosing a number on a sliding scale.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

How to Use Blended Play for Classroom Review Games

Last week I published a post about a neat game platform called Blended Play. Blended Play provides five online game boards that you can project in your classroom to use as the template for review games. I have had a lot of questions about Blended Play since I published my blog post about it last week. I made the following video to demonstrate how Blended Play works.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Blended Play: New Website for Creating Online Games

Blended Play is a free online portal where teachers of any subject and grade level can create games to review material. There are currently four games that teachers can select from including Mountain Climber, Viking Fleet, Sushi Takeover, and Space Sale. The games are played by teams of students and no devices are needed. The game is projected for all students to see and you can decide if you want the questions to be displayed along with the game or if you would prefer to read the questions out loud and only display the game.

Applications for Education
This would be a fun way for students to review material. Teachers could even have each student write questions then they could select the best questions to use as a review.


Monday, July 6, 2015

Dozens of Online Games About Nature

The Canadian Museum of Nature offers a large collection of online games about mammals, birds, and dinosaurs. Choose one of the three categories on the gallery page to see all of the related games. The games are primarily matching activities with some small interactive elements added into the mix. For example, the game about beaver lodges asks students to help create a beaver lodge by dragging the proper pieces together while also making the beavers swim away from predators.

Applications for Education
The games offered by the Canadian Museum of Nature do provide students with a little bit of context and some instruction before and while they are playing. That said, these games are best suited as review activities in elementary school classrooms.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Dozens of Online Games and Quizzes About Grammar

Road to Grammar is a free resource featuring quizzes, games, and lessons for English language learners. Visitors to Road to Grammar will find grammar quizzes. Most of the quizzes provide students with instant feedback. Part of the feedback that students receive on the quizzes they take includes explanations why an answer is correct or incorrect. Before taking the quizzes visitors can work through a series of practice activities.

Applications for Education
In addition to the resources that students can use individually, Road to Grammar offers some downloadable resources for teachers. Teachers will find the collection of eight downloads offer discussion starters for English lessons, lesson warm-up activities, and some worksheets.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Champion Reader - A New Reading Game on Teach Your Monster to Read

Teach Your Monster to Read is a series of fun game designed to help students improve the speed and accuracy with which they recognize letters and sounds. Students play the games as a friendly monster avatar. The latest update to Teach Your Monster to Read comes in the form of new game called Champion Reader.

Champion Reader provides the third level of difficulty in the Teach Your Monster to Read series. The game introduces students to alternate pronunciations of letters and multiple ways of representing the same sounds. Like all of the Teach Your Monster to Read games Champion Reader sends students on a quest to complete by accurately recognizing words, letters, and sounds.


Teach Your Monster To Read - Champion Reader from Dina Makanji on Vimeo.

Applications for Education
Teachers can create and manage their students' accounts on Teach Your Monster to Read. Creating Teach Your Monster to Read accounts for all of your students is a simple process. Just register yourself as a teacher then enter your students' names (first names only) or upload a CSV file of your students' names. Teach Your Monster to Read will automatically generate a password for each student. As the teacher you can log-in anytime to see your students' progress. You can also turn off the password requirement during your class. Turning off the password requirement during class could be helpful when you want to get students into the activities as quickly as possible.


Friday, March 20, 2015

Consumer Education at the Mall

The FTC offers a lot of good resources designed to help students and adults become savvy consumers. One of the resources they provide for students is an online environment called Consumer Education at the Mall. This virtual mall features animated lessons, games, and other activities that help students understand advertising methods, product pricing, and privacy protection. The virtual mall also has a section in which students can learn about common consumer scams.

The consumer education mall has four sections. In the west terrace students learn about advertising methods and truth in advertising rules. The west terrace also includes a game in which students have to match advertisements to their intended audiences. In the consumer education mall's food court students learn about how competition between businesses can be a good thing for consumers. In the food court students students also learn how supply and demand affect prices. The mall's security plaza is where students head when they want to learn about consumer privacy protections, what kind of personal information is safe to share and which kinds are not safe to share. In the mall's east terrace students discover why enticing prices, give-away promotions, and flattery isn't what it appears to be on the surface.

Applications for Education
The activities in Consumer Education at the Mall are designed for students in upper elementary grades and middle school. You could have students attempt to go through all of the activities in one sitting or you could break it up into sixteen smaller lessons for your students. The FTC provides PDF fact sheets for each activity in the consumer education mall.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Prodigy - A Fun Game Environment for Practicing Math Skills

This is a guest post from Richie Saltzman of Prodigy, an advertiser on this blog.

Game-based learning is a popular topic in education, especially digital games that take an adaptive approach to learning. Adaptive games are not only a great way to engage, but also a great way to personalize learning to meet the skill level and needs of each student. There are some great adaptive games out there, and when used as a supplemental teaching tool, can have a profound impact on student learning.

One program that is doing a good job of gamifying math is Prodigy Math Game. Prodigy is a free, adaptive math game that integrates 1st to 7th grade math into a fantasy style game that students absolutely love playing. Prodigy’s math content is completely curriculum-aligned and covers standards from the Common Core, MAFs, and TEKS curricula depending on your location. Prodigy takes game-based learning a step further and provides teachers with a powerful set of reporting and assessment tools that allow them to easily identify trouble spots, differentiate instruction, and better manage classroom time.

Over 1,000,000 students and 50,000 teachers use Prodigy for free math practice and it’s easy to see why. Here’s what one teacher we spoke to had to say about the program:

“The best thing that prodigy has done for my students is bring excitement to mathematics. The program exhibits the perfect balance of engaging elements for students and feedback tools for teachers.

Elements of Prodigy I like as a teacher:
  • The ability to track student use and accuracy gives great information to help with evaluation of students math abilities
  • The ability to give assignments relevant to the math students are doing in class allows for reinforcement of concepts taught
  • The ability to differentiate assigned lessons for students on IEPs and students who need a challenge
  • The program’s curriculum-alignment saves me from having to weed through for relevant questions - I can be sure Prodigy’s questions will reflect the curriculum
Elements of Prodigy Math Game that students enjoy:
  • Engaging in math battles and earning new rewards, pets, and other items
  • The ability to see how they are doing relative to their classmates
  • Students who struggle seek help from classmates in the top 5 instead of always going to the teacher.
  • Game questions align with the questions seen in class.
Additionally, since Prodigy is web-based students can play from anywhere on almost any device. In fact, my students spend a lot of time playing the game at home, and thanks the reporting tool I can use their progress data to better inform my classroom instruction.” Maureen Teffer, Learning Centre SERT Prodigy is effective at engaging students using an adaptive technology to cater to each individual. Prodigy’s personalized approach quickly identifies gaps in students’ understanding and works with them by pulling them back to prerequisite skills and then scaffolding them forward through more difficult concepts. As a web-based game, Prodigy can be accessed at school and at home on virtually any device. You can sign-up your class for free in less than 2 minutes.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Go Wild - Online and Offline Activities for Learning About Animals

The World Wildlife Federation's Go Wild website is a great place to find online and offline activities that can help elementary school students learn about a variety of animals and ecosystems. The site is arranged into six sections; Americas, Asia, Africa, Europe, Polar, and Oceans. Each section includes online games and quizzes about animals. Each section also includes a hands-on activity like creating a shoe box safari.

Applications for Education
Due to its mix of online and offline activities Go Wild offers something for almost all classroom settings. The site is one that I might consider adding to my classroom blog as a resource for parents who are looking for educational activities to do at home with their children.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Web Rangers Offers a Fun Way to Learn About U.S. National Parks

Web Rangers offers seven categories of games about different subjects related to the National Parks. The game categories are people, animals, parks, science, history, nature, and puzzles. Each category contains games of varying difficulty rated from easy to difficult. Some of the game topics include dendrochronology, animal tracking, animal identification, fire fighting, and map reading.

Students can play Web Rangers games as visitors or as registered users. Registered users can track their progress and earn virtual rewards. Registered users can also create their own customized virtual ranger stations.

Applications for Education
Web Rangers could be a great way for students to learn about all of the things that National Parks contain. The games also introduce players to the job functions of Park Rangers. In that regard, the game could be a "career exploration" activity of sorts. You might also use the games in conjunction with some of the National Parks system's lesson plans.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Spree Games - Educational Games for All Ages

Spree Games is a site developed by Marc Prensky for the purpose of cataloging educational games that are available online. Spree Games currently lists 272 games. On the site you can search for educational games by grade level, age, and subject area. Spree Games provides a short overview of each game's purpose.

Applications for Education
Spree Games provides an option to register for an account that students can use to track which games they've played and their progress on those games. Or you can simply go directly to the site that hosts each of the games and play them there. That is what I did this evening when I discovered this President's Challenge Game and I think that's how much teachers will use Spree Games too. Spree Games makes it easy for teachers to quickly find some educational games for their students to play.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Individualized Technology Plan Helps Student with Autism Achieve Learning Goals

October 3, 2010:
“Michael, what is 2 plus 0?”
“O.”
“What is 2 plus 1?”
“1?” “2?”
“What is 1 plus 1?”
“1.”

January 10, 2011:
“Michael, what is 7 plus 8?”
“15.”
“5 plus 5?”
“10.”
“9 plus 3?”
“12.”

Michael is a third grade student with severe Autism Spectrum Disorder. At the beginning of the year, the extent of Michael’s math knowledge was filling out a number chart from 1 to 100 with 80% accuracy. He was not able to do simple addition, tell time, identify coins, put together puzzles, or identify shapes.
Michael’s parents were adamant that he attend a public school and be placed in a regular class and Michael enjoyed being with his classmates. However, Michael was not learning. He had a short attention span and the teacher covered new material very quickly. As Michael’s Dedicated Aide, I worked hard to keep him on track. I rarely had time to teach him fundamental skills.

Six weeks into the school year, Michael was still trying to learn addition, while the rest of the class was working on identifying quadrilaterals and solving word problems. I realized that if I did not take charge of Michael’s learning, he would continue to fall farther and farther behind. I knew he was capable of reaching his Individualized Education Program (IEP) goals; he just needed more individualized instruction and something to engage him in learning. I got permission from the Principal, his parents, and his teacher to pull him from the classroom for two hours every afternoon.

I brought my laptop and iPod Touch to school to see if technology would peak Michael’s interest in learning. I was amazed at how quickly Michael picked up the basics of using different technologies. Within minutes, Michael was using a mouse to navigate the computer and operating the touch screen on my iPod touch to find applications and play games.

Technology became the optimal learning tool for Michael. I used Michael’s IEP goals to create 3-4 smaller weekly goals. Then, I searched the Internet (and the FreeTech4Teachers blog!) to find online games, resources, and activities as well as iPod applications. I created a blended learning environment for Michael. He would spend 20-30 minutes on a computer game or iPod app, then I would give him a written quiz, and we would review his answers. Then, we would move on to the next skill set.

Here is an example of a typical 2-hour lesson plan:

Addition (0’s, 1’s, 2’s)
Time (Hours and Half Hours)
Motor Visual/Spatial Skills
Numbers to 1000
If we had time left over, I would let Michael play Angry Birds as a reward. He fell in love with this game and he worked extra hard every day just to play it for 5 minutes at the end of the learning block.

What Did Michael Learn?
Within two months, Michael achieved four out of five of his math IEP goals. He was able to add single digit numbers with 80% accuracy, tell time to the half hour, and write, count, and indentify numbers up to 1000 with 80% accuracy. He also solved 6 and 12-piece puzzles in less than 5 minutes and he was able to identify coins with 100% accuracy.

What Did I Learn?
I learned that it does not matter how far students are behind, if you engage them in learning and provide them with the right tools, they can achieve their academic goals. For Michael, technology was the ideal learning tool. The online games and iPod apps gave him instant feedback. He knew within seconds whether his answer was right or wrong. The games also provided Michael with a low-pressure learning atmosphere where he could try, fail, start over, and try again until he mastered the level or solved the problem. This kept him engaged and gave him the chance to succeed. While Michael was never able to put more than two physical puzzle pieces together without getting frustrated and giving up, he could solve a puzzle on the Let’s Tans iPod app in seconds. He would tap pieces to turn them, double-tap to flip them, and then slide them into the shape. His mind worked incredibly fast and Let’s Tans allowed him to try as many times as possible at a rapid pace. 

Technology changed the way that I taught. I learned how to mentor and guide rather than lecture. Instead of telling Michael how to solve a problem, I would let him try it on his own. When he couldn’t figure it out, I would teach him how to find the solution. Then he would try again. He would continue working until he needed my help again. Allowing Michael to control his learning pace and reducing the amount of new information he learned at one time helped Michael process the information better and retain it in his memory.

Finally, I realized that technology is only part of the learning experience. While technology engaged Michael in learning and provided him with feedback, I still guided and supported him. I spent time reviewing answers with him and helping him learn new material. I conducted ongoing assessments to determine how much time Michael should spend on each activity and whether he needed to learn additional skills. It was a combination of individualized instruction and new technologies that helped Michael achieve his learning goals.

My Advice to Teachers, Aides, and Educators
If you have students with disabilities or students that are below grade level in a certain subject, find technology tools that will help them achieve their academic goals and let them spend 20-30 minutes using those tools every day. Be available to answer questions, but wait until they come to you for help. Make sure to check in with these students when they finish to assess their progress toward their academic goals. You will be pleasantly surprised with how fast students learn to use new technology tools and how this opportunity will help the students become more self-sufficient and responsible learners. This will also allow the students to learn in a low-pressure, student-centered atmosphere.


Torrey Trust (http://www.torreytrust.com) has a Masters of Arts in Educational Technology from San Diego State University. As the Technology Coordinator at an elementary school in Washington, D.C., Trust designed a database of technology tools (K-12 Tech Tools) categorized by subject, grade level, and standard to connect teachers with technology resources and make it easier for them to integrate technology into their lesson plans. This fall, she will be pursuing a Ph.D. in Education (Teaching and Learning) with a specialization in Technology and Society at the University of California, Santa Barbara. 

Monday, March 30, 2009

Brain Training Games from Mind 360

Mind 360 is a fun website that I learned about over the weekend on the Recess Duty blog. Mind 360 features at least eighteen free brain training games. The games range in difficulty and in task from simple matching games to more difficult logic and reasoning games. Mind 360 allows you to play the games individually or challenge another Mind 360 user to a game. If you play often, you can track your game scores and progress in your Mind 360 profile.

Applications for Education
Mind 360 could be a good website for students to use during a downtime in your class or during a study hall period. The games themselves might be difficult to build a lesson plan around, but the skills that students could develop while playing the games do have value.

Some related resources that may be of interest to you are:
Help Kidz Learn
Find Country Geography Games
Games for the Brain

Save 20% on all books & DVDs from National Geographic!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Five Fun Spelling Games

In late November I wrote a blog post outlining five resources for free spelling games. That blog post was among the top twenty most read posts of 2008 therefore I am sharing some more online spelling games for elementary school, middle school, and high school students.

1. Spelling Wizard from Scholastic.com lets students, parents, and teachers create their own word search and word scramble games to play online. Each game can have up to ten words. To use Spelling Wizard simply enter ten words into the list field then select word search or word scramble. Spelling Wizard is probably best suited for students in Kindergarten through second grade. Scholastic also offers a free tool for creating online spelling flashcards.

2. Read Write Think has an online activity for young (K-2) students based on four childrens' books. Read Write Think's Word Wizard asks students to select one of four books that they have read or have had read to them. After selecting a book the Word Wizard creates a simple online spelling exercise based on the words in the book chosen by the child.

3. Spell Bee was developed at Brandeis University with funding from the National Science Foundation and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Spell Bee allows students to play spelling games in a head-to-head format. Spell Bee allows teachers to create accounts for students so that teachers can track student progress.

4. MSNBC has an interactive spelling bee based on the words from the Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee. There are three games to play and the words get progressively more difficult the longer you play. The words are read to students who then type the word into the spelling box. Just like in a real spelling bee, students can get the definition and or hear it used in a sentence. The difficulty of the words in the game make it best suited for middle school and high school students.

5. Spelling Bee The Game is an online spelling bee similar in style to the MSNBC game mentioned above. After selecting an avatar (game persona), students hear words read to them and have to type the correct spelling in the fields provided. If a student spells a word correctly, they move on to the next level. If a student does not spell a word correctly, they are given an easier word to try. If students need help spelling a word, they can hear the definition read as well as hear the word used in a sentence.