Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Independence Day and Learning

Happy Independence Day of the Still Greatest Nation on Earth!  Without education, we can never be free; therefore, we share with mentors and parents some websites that will teach, inspire, and entertain all year whether from a computer at a mentoring site or an iPhone or iPad. 

Having Fun with History

The Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence partners with the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and Mount Vernon to strengthen early American history education in Oklahoma.  Here are some links that might be fun to share with young people in your life:

Colonial Williamsburg Kids Zone – Meet Colonial people, take a virtual tour of Williamsburg and enjoy fun games about America’s past.    

George Washington’s World for Kids –  Explore Mount Vernon’s children’s website featuring a 3-D Washington’s treasures game, Harpsichord Hero, archaeology memory game and other fun activities.       

Having Fun with Civics

Quoting from the website:

iCivics prepares young Americans to become knowledgeable, engaged 21st century citizens by creating free and innovative educational materials.
In 2009, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor founded iCivics to reverse Americans’ declining civic knowledge and participation. Securing our democracy, she realized, requires teaching the next generation to understand and respect our system of governance. Today iCivics comprises not just our board and staff, but also a national leadership team of state supreme court justices, secretaries of state, and educational leaders and a network of committed volunteers. Together, we are committed to passing along our legacy of democracy to the next generation. 
In just two years, iCivics has produced 16 educational video games as well as vibrant teaching materials that have been used in classrooms in all 50 states. Today we offer the nation’s most comprehensive, standards-aligned civics curriculum that is available freely on the Web. You can see all that we've been up to in our latest annual report! Ret. 6-26-12

You may have heard or read about this site when retired United States Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor visited Oklahoma in April 2012.  Oklahoma Supreme Court Justice Noma D. Gurich has applauded this site and its mission many times so here it is for all of you.   

Fun and Information about Virtually Anything 
This is a well-designed learning and teaching opportunity for kids, teens, and grown-ups (teachers/parents) with interactive “Learn Things” such as jobs, music, history, government, math, and other topics by grade levels, grades K-5, 6-8, and adult along with games, videos, and so much more.  Imagine a fun game about estuaries!  The jobs’ section ranging from CIA agents and botanists to agricultural scientists and loan officers is particularly interesting for mentors of elementary and middle school mentors or just for the children themselves.  Job explanations and interactive activities are age-appropriately worded.   

May your Fourth of July and other patriotic celebrations be stuffed with memories made with friends and family, from cooking out to watching fireworks to playing outdoor games. These holidays reminds us to talk about our nation's history, what independence means, and what are our responsibilities as citizens--all year.

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