Fantastic Planning & Teaching Tool
As a teaching and planning tool, EDSITEment is a fantastic resource, especially for humanities teachers. The site is clean and easy to navigate, which I always tend to mention in a recommendation. Furthermore, and this is the largest reason I highly recommend it, is that the lesson plans are accessible and thorough. Often, teachers find they can't access a lesson because they have join or pay a monthly fee; where as of now, EDSITEment is free. Secondly, in online research for lesson planning, a teacher often finds old, short, or irrelevant lesson plans. I recommend this one because the lessons are actually thorough in giving background information, visual accompaniments, thoughtful activities/questions, and resources beyond. Also, it is very easy for teachers, in the humanities, to use the lessons for cross disciplinary courses or classes, as EDSITEment provides information to do so.
For students, as I noted above, this is not as an exciting tool, yet. However, there is a separate tab for "Student Resources" that students may use for further learning. As with any educational website, it would really depend on the student to utilize it for supplemental learning. Their "Launchpad" series though, in different areas for student resources, is just as thorough and researched in information. If a student were to use it, they would find much to supplement and test his or her comprehension. I would recommend it for advanced learners, on their own, because I anticipate many other learns becoming intimated and overwhelmed by the information on their own.
How I Use It
Teaching literature and humanities often means delving into cross disciplinary areas, and EDSITEment is easily set up for that. For example, our class read Jack London's "To Build a Fire" short story. Because I used the EDSITEment lesson plan, I was able to discuss and introduce the story with photographs, maps, and background of Jack London as well as the Yukon. The photographs caught the students' attention, and the background helped with their overall comprehension. After their initial reading, we were able to use some of the activities and handouts provided to further explore the symbolism and themes in the story. Using the EDSITEment website really helped to supplement a short story lesson into a discussion about geography, history as well as literary devices. Again, great for teachers and planning - highly recommend!