Best of the Best On-line Resources

  • Websites for Talent Development
    The index of Websites for Talent Development includes lesson plans, on-line projects, curriculum sites, and resource centers. We are indebted to Gil Dyrli, professor emeritus of the University of Connecticut, Curriculum Administrator magazine’s technology editor.
  • Resources With Sample Lesson/Unit Plans
    Six sample lessons/units follow. In each plan, we attempt to provide ideas for how to implement a Best-of-the-Best Resources. The plans are drawn from a variety of subject areas as well as grades.
  • Curriculum Resources for Talent Development
    This site is organized into three categories of Type II skills: creative thinking, critical thinking, and problem solving in math and science. Resources are designated at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. In addition, science teachers can access resources for selected topic areas such as biology and physics.
    Organizational Matrix for Curriculum Resources for Talent Development
  • Academic Competitions
    The WordMasters Challenge
    Two categories in this team competition: The challenge for elementary and middle-school encourages growth in vocabulary and verbal reasoning, and the high school challenge focuses on perceptive reading, sensitivity to language, and an appreciation of style.
    Contact information: tel. (201) 327-4201, www.wordmasterschallenge.com.The Rube Goldberg Machine Contest for high schoolers brings the ideas of Pulitzer Prize-winning artist Rube Goldberg’s “Invention” cartoons to life. Groups are given an elementary challenge: something as simple as peeling an apple, sharpening a pencil, or putting toothpaste on a toothbrush. But instead of just “solving” the problem, students have to make the solution as complicated and as convoluted as possible. See video and more information at www.rube-goldberg.com.The NASA Student Involvement Program offers several different competitions.
    See their website at www.nasa.gov/audience/foreducators/index.html for more information on:
    My Planet Earth for grades K-4
    Science & Technology Journalism for grades K-12
    Aerospace Technology Engineering Challenge for grades 5-8
    Design a Mission to Mars… and Beyond for grades 9-12
    Watching Earth Change for grades 9-12, and
    Space Flight Opportunities for grades 9-12The Kids Philosophy Slam National Championship
    Their mission is to give kids a voice and to inspire kids to think by unlocking their intellectual and creative potential through a unique and powerful philosophical forum.
    www.philosophyslam.orgArts Recognition and Talent Search
    Students in dance, film and video, jazz, music, photography, theater, visual arts, voice, and writing may apply for a variety of awards. Detailed instructions on their website at www.youngarts.org.

    National Science Bowl
    For teams of high school students
    Contact information: (202) 586-6702 or science.energy.gov/wdts/nsb

    National Federation of Press Women High School Communications Contest
    For students in grades 9-12
    Submit work in one of the following categories: cartooning, editorial, feature, feature photo, graphics, news, opinion, review, single page layout, sports, or sports photos.
    Early February annually
    Contact information: (800) 780-2715 or www.nfpw.org/competitions.php

    U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad (USNCO)
    Teachers nominate students who have taken high school chemistry.
    Local tests held in March
    National exam is in late April
    Contact information: (800) 227-5558 or www.acs.org

    Quill and Scroll International Writing and Photo Contest
    High schools may submit four entries in each of 12 categories.
    Early February
    Contact information: (319) 335-5795 or quillandscroll.org/contests/writing-photo-multimedia-contest

    Harvard-MIT Mathematics Tournament
    Schools register teams of eight students. Individuals and teams smaller than eight may request to be matched with other students to form a team.
    February
    Contact information: hmmt.mit.edu

    National French Contest
    French teachers register students in elementary through high school to take this exam offered at five levels.
    March. Exact dates on website.
    Contact information: www.frenchteachers.org/concours

    Davidson Fellows Award
    Students under the age of 18 apply for scholarships of $50,000 or $10,000 for their work in one of seven categories.
    Preliminary form due by March 15
    Final application due by March 26
    Contact information: (775) 852-3483 ext. 435 or www.davidsongifted.org

    Physics Bowl
    Schools register to administer this 45-minute exam to students in grades 9-12.
    Awards for students and teachers
    Contact information: (301) 209-3344 or www.aapt.org/programs/physicsbowl

  • Great Ideas! Resources for Enrichment Teaching
    Cricket Media

    Contact information:
    7926 Jones Branch Drive, Suite 870, McLean, VA 22102
    Tel. (703) 885-3400, Toll-free: (800) 821-0115
    www.cricketmedia.com
    Products:
    Theme packs to aid in integrating reading and writing skills into content areas. Each theme pack boxed set contains themed magazines and a teacher’s guide.
    Themes include: Civics, Africa, Ancient Civilizations, Art History Civil War, Black History, Industrialization, Ocean Life, World Religions, and many more. Use Archeology to teach about history: DIG magazine and a collection of books for your classroom library. Also a theme pack. Teaching with primary sources: Large collection of primary source materials and lesson plans.