Instructional Websites for Life Skills Classrooms
Thank you to our contributors. If you have anything that you would like to add (particularly more detailed reviews of some of these sites), please email that material to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Videos can use a lot of bandwidth, which concerns some of our host districts.
- General video sites (e.g., YouTube, Google) can link to material that is not appropriate for school.
- Lane ESD Life Skills does not support:
- unmonitored student online access, or
- access for entertainment.
- Do not access personally-owned subscriptions (e.g., do not use a personal Netflix account).
- Face-to-face instruction constitutes Fair Use for movies, music, and so on.
Subscriptions for All Life Skills Rooms (at no cost to their classroom budget)
Our families are allowed to access these from home as well. Write to email@example.com if you do not have the login information.
TumbleBook Library (Premium version: K-8)
These read-aloud books (somewhat animated) can be switch accessible with a partner. Non-fiction books have their own section. There are also graphic novels (especially at higher levels), videos, games, and some books in other languages.
Switch-accessible program site.
For these next two, each student has a separately tracked account in your classroom:
Leveled spelling and phonics lessons. If the usage statistics indicate that you do not actually access the accounts, they will be removed. (The phonics program is also available through an app installed on the classroom iPads.) There is an administrator login for each classroom, and each student will have their own login for their account.
This is the additional paid content for Starfall. (This one is not available from home.)
These next three are teacher and specialist resources in the main, and are not accessible by our families from home:
Every Life Skills classroom and specialist has access to this symbol-based grid creation site. Our subscription lasts until the end of the 2019 school year, and we are considering alternatives (such as Boardmaker Online).
Super Teacher Worksheets
Thousands of printable PDF worksheets: math, spelling, reading comprehension, board and card games, graphic organizers, handwriting, flashcards, and manipulatives.
Enchanted Learning (There is a Member Log-in link on this page.)
Tens of thousands of educational activities, games, printables, and so on.
Subscriptions Chosen by Specific Classrooms (at a cost to their budget)
The username/password for these sites will be specific to a given classroom.
Reading A-Z (and similar, such as Science A-Z, Writing A-Z, and Vocab A-Z)
Reading instruction: leveled readers, phonics, vocabulary, and so on.
The AT budget pays half.
Leveled, symbolated current events stories. Includes a large set of associated lessons and activities for each story. Includes access to the SymbolStix library. We also have the PDF archives available at no cost the classroom.
The AT budget pays half.
Very few classrooms subscribe to these:
BrainPop and BrainPop Jr
There are tons of educational flash videos organized by academic category: Science, Social Studies, English, Math, Engineering & Tech, Health, and Arts & Music. In any given category, you drill down to a specific video (e.g., Math à Numbers & Operations à Multiplication). At the level of the specific video, this is what you get: 1) the movie clip (with a zoom button to make it full screen); 2) lesson plans and teaching tools; 3) links to other videos on related topics; 4) quizzes; 5) activities (e.g., simple tests, graphic organizers, vocabulary); 6) Q&A (question sentences about the topic, click to see the answer); 7) "gameup" (flash games on the topic); 8) experiment; 9) FYI; and 10) buttons to other categories.
This site also has a "Brainpop Educators" section where you can find: a) state academic standards and their related BrainPOP videos; b) lesson plans; c) an educators blog, and d) training.
Leveled activities for area, shapes, counting, patterning, measuring, weight, volume, and so on.
K-6 leveled math program linked to state standards.
D-Pan: Deaf Professional Arts Network
This is a great place to go if you are looking for signed videos.
Internet Safety 101
The website as a whole has a lot of good general information about internet safety, and this link goes specifically to sets of age-based guidelines.
Academic (Mostly) Games and Videos
Multiple Subject Areas
Early learners, lots of topics
Infant, toddler, preschool
Big Brown Bear
Many literacy activities; program for constructing simple addition/subtraction problems
A great website with hip hop type songs and videos for every letter of the alphabet, plus math, science, writing worksheets and activities.
Ages 3-6, 6-9, and 9-12; also keyboard use and games
National Library of Virtual Manipulatives
More advanced math learners; activities for money, time telling, graph reading
The Ruler Game
A simple game to read rulers, you can set it for timed or not and by increments.
Lots of different games, some focus on money, measurement, coin flipping, and some good fun stuff. Requires a plugin download.
Literacy / Reading / Writing / Typing
Interactive reading site with stories, games, themes; early/mid reading-related activities
Internet Picture Dictionary
Online stories, rhymes, and games that cover literacy; early sound-recognition games
Dance Mat Typing
Leveled keyboarding/typing program, good for our population, no timer
Early learner; shapes, numbers, letters, CVC spelling words
Scholastic Kids Page
A variety of games, interviews, and video clips. Good for all ages.
Literacy/phonics activities and video clips, great for older students as well.
Author of James and the Giant Peach, Matilda, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and so on
He reads Hungry Caterpillar, and the site contains lots of printable activities.
Skippy Jon Jones
Author reading her stories and fun games
Mercer Mayer reading his stories, plus cool interactive games, printables, and songs
Shows you the night sky based on your location
World Almanac for Kids
Great source for facts, ideas about the world
National Geographic for Kids
Great science games and videos
Human body systems with good info, highlights different parts of the body/systems and defines them.
Leveled activities for chemistry, space, cellular biology, and plant growth. Excellent for all grade levels.
Museum of Online Museums (MoOm)
A list of online and interactive museums. Covers lots of different topics and areas, excellent for upper grade levels and students with very specific interest areas.
Books (See also Online Subscriptions)
Magic Keys books
Books are not read aloud, but can be switch accessible
Various interactive/powerpoint books online or downloadable. Review before showing to students! Can be switch accessible and/or voice enabled.
Streaming video of popular books read by famous actors, e.g., James Earl Jones reads To be a Drum. Comes with activities and lesson plans.
The Best Children's Books
A list of books sorted by subject area, great way to find a book for themes
Recipes, science experiments, silly jokes
See also the HelpKidzLearn subscription.
Shiny Learning Games
Simple mouse games to play online (with variable reliability, however)
An excellent resource for leveled readers and math worksheets/activities for preschool to 5th grade.
Making Learning Fun
Early childhood; printables, coloring pages, and early-learning themed activities
Early childhood; includes file folder printables by theme, many of which are free
Math and writing worksheets leveled by grade and activity, where you can design your own
Special Needs Teacher Materials
Worksheets, links to free software, and so on
The Teacher's Guide
Lesson plans, materials, technology resources
Phonics and letter sound cards in Word format
A file folder site with lots of items to download
More pre-made file folder activities
Tons of customizable math worksheets for all levels
Free Loops (sound files)
Free sound files
Internet Archive (of Media)
There are tons of open media files here. You will need to preview some of this, but there are areas that have just animal clips, and so on.
Other (Not-necessarily-Academic) Games and Videos
Video clips for nearly everything you can think of. NOTE: Preview everything before letting students watch. Lane ESD Life Skills does not support unmonitored student access.
Make a word cloud
Great science videos, games, runs through the Discovery Channel
Really cool countdown timers you can use and set for the whole group
Apples for the Teacher
Various resources: games, materials, activities, and so on
LESD Instructional Technology Support
Services and resources for teachers
Public transportation planner
Students using tech to make music
SpEd Tech British Columbia
While this site is designed for BC schools, it contains a whole lot of information about AT.
Oregon Technology Access Program. Consult with your AT provider before borrowing materials from their equipment library.
This is a therapeutic equestrian center.
General AT and Special Needs Sites
"A resource of fun ideas and 'assistive technology' aimed at moderate to severely learning/physically disabled people."
"Using Assistive Technology to Empower Apple Users with Disabilities."
SimplyNoise (Requires Flash Player)
This site plays white noise (or you can choose pink or brown noise instead), which can be good for sensory work. Some folks use this while trying to blanket distractions, or to help relax (and even fall asleep).