LearnZillion is wonderful and adaptable, and a great tool for classrooms everywhere.
LearnZillion has such a wide variety of resources for all ages of learners. The lessons are crafted with the Common Core standards in mind by teachers who were chosen as leaders in their field, so you can be sure that each lesson is student-centered and of a high quality. I like the way they lay out the lesson, the simple steps, and the flow from lesson to lesson. In some instances, particularly in English lessons, there are entire units where students are guided through a text and made to use high-level literary skills as they read, then are guided through a significant and meaningful writing prompt from drafting to editing. Each LearnZillion lesson comes with a powerpoint, a video with the teacher who created it giving a lesson that is 4-7 minutes long, an expert commentary on the text or concept being taught, a read-aloud of the text (ELA lessons), guided notes for students as they listen to the teaching video, and many come with further practice handouts. It is a lesson in a box, though I would definitely suggest going through the materials before using them in your classroom. Because of LearnZillion, teachers whose students have access to technology at home could easily flip their classrooms, where the introduction of the concept is done at home and the practice occurs in the classroom where the teacher can guide them properly. The website is easy to navigate, and you can look up lessons by topic, common core standard, text (ELA lessons), or grade level. Hopefully soon the website will have science and social studies lessons as well!
How I Use It
I love the LearnZillion lessons because they can be used in such a wide variety of ways. I use them to introduce a concept sometimes, and other times I pull them up for individual students who are either ahead of the class or who are struggling with what we are working on. For my ELA students who need extra concept help, I can set them up at a computer after class or when the other students are working and know that the lesson I pull up with explain that concept simply but clearly. The visuals used in the lessons also help struggling learners, as they can see what the teacher is talking about. Each lesson comes with clear steps that are easy for the student to replicate and use, and a clear goal that is communicated well. This way, the lesson is packaged neatly and is very simple for both students and teachers. Students are able to take away not only an understanding of the concept, but a set of steps that they can apply to other texts or problems, which is empowering and helpful to all learners. Don't fall into the lazy habit of simply pulling up a concept and hoping it works for your kids without checking it out first, as the lesson may take a slightly different direction than you wanted. This website has changed my classroom.