New & Noteworthy Apps and Websites - Feb 25

February 25, 2014
Ellen Holderman
Common Sense Education

CATEGORIES In the Classroom, Technology Integration, Tools

Every Tuesday, we spotlight newly reviewed products that received a 4 or 5 editorial rating. This week's list of apps, games, and sites include a creative tool for students to use to present information, a challenging game that helps kids learn to think like programmers, a website with high-quality tutorials on math and science, and lessons and activities on American history presented by the Smithsonian.

We invite you to add your voice to the conversation. Do you use one of these products in your classroom? Consider writing a Field Note to let other educators see how you integrate these tools into your lesson planning. For tips on writing a great Field Note, check out this step-by-step blog post.


Sample videos and tutorials help you see what formats and features are available with TouchCast. If you want to get started right away, you can simply choose a template and press record. Teachers in nearly every subject area can have students create a video to complement or, in some cases, replace a research paper or other project. Read full review.

Kids playing Cargo-Bot write programs to control a robotic arm, having the robot move crates into the configuration shown on the top of the screen. Kids can work through a six-level tutorial first to get familiar with the controls and features (even the tutorial is challenging!). Read full review.

Smithsonian's History Explorer
Smithsonian's History Explorer is a website developed by the National Museum of American History that offers online resources for teaching and learning American history. Aside from its great search function and excellent selection of lessons and activities, the site is beautifully designed and a pleasure to browse. Read full review.

Virtual Nerd
Virtual Nerd is a website featuring tutorials to supplement learning in middle and high school math and physics classes. Hundreds of tutorials are available for sixth- through eighth-grade math, Pre-Algebra, Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Geometry, and Introductory Physics. Read full review.