Common Core Explorer

RI.7.4

These apps, games, and websites will help your students determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone.
Website
CommonLit
Feature-rich literacy resource offers superb support for readers
GRADES
5 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Newsela
Absorbing daily news stories offer kids just-right learning content
GRADES
2 - 12
PRICE
Free, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
Subtext
Collaborative, customizable digital reader for all subject areas
GRADES
4 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
BetterLesson
Exemplary Common Core-aligned lessons from rock star peers at large
GRADES
Pre-K - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Genius
Collaborative tool lets kids annotate songs, literature, news
GRADES
7 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
LearnZillion
Quality Common Core-aligned lessons with great modeling for teachers
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Mango Languages
User-friendly site with cool videos focuses on conversation, culture
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free to Try, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Game
Mayan Mysteries
Captivating archaeology adventure about ancient Mayan culture
GRADES
4 - 9
PRICE
Paid
PLATFORM
Linux, Mac, Windows
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
PBS LearningMedia
Impressive collection of classroom-ready, free digital resources
GRADES
Pre-K - 12
PRICE
Free, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Poets.org
Vast array of poets and poems; on the serious side
GRADES
6 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
ProCon.org
Comprehensive, nonpartisan resource navigates controversial issues
GRADES
6 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
ReadWorks Digital
Research-based site makes it easy to assign, differentiate readings
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Scratch
Jump-start future programmers with adaptive sandbox tool
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
The Learning Network
Process current events through engaging NYT-style lens
GRADES
7 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
World's Worst Pet - Vocabulary
Hip games help kids learn words they'll actually use
GRADES
4 - 8
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
8notes.com
Solid mix of free and paid music ed resources, plus sheet music
GRADES
3 - 12
PRICE
Free, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Awesome Stories
Explore dynamic, media-rich stories, bring news and history to life
GRADES
3 - 12
PRICE
Free, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
Brain Bran
Logic problems and puzzles abound
GRADES
5 - 12
PRICE
Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Channel One News
Kids' daily news site a solid starting point for nonfiction learning
GRADES
3 - 12
PRICE
Free, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
CliffsNotes
A decent support for understanding reading, but not a replacement
GRADES
7 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
NOT YET RATED
Game
Code Fred: Survival Mode
Fight or flight biology charmingly explored from the inside out
GRADES
6 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
Windows
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
Common Core Quest
Comprehensive CCSS-aligned resource for instruction and assessment
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
Dictionary - Merriam-Webster
No-frills reference isn't highly engaging but gets the job done
GRADES
6 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
Dictionary.com
Useful reference tool with voice recognition and daily updates
GRADES
6 - 12
PRICE
Free, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Game
DimensionU
ELA and math games alternate between play and practice
GRADES
2 - 10
PRICE
Free to Try
PLATFORM
Mac, Windows
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
NOT YET RATED
Website
Exploratorium
Science experiments and activities abound in this comprehensive resource
GRADES
6 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
Grade 6 Vocab Audios and Pics
Quirky cartoons, great audio features bring fun to vocab study
GRADES
5 - 7
PRICE
Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
NOT YET RATED
Website
InnerBody
Macro and micro anatomy lessons need updated multimedia
GRADES
6 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
JogNog
Full access to extensive library of standards-aligned quizzes can get pricey
GRADES
2 - 12
PRICE
Free, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Kids in the House
Detailed, age-appropriate intro to the U.S. Congress and its history
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
NOT YET RATED
Website
Kids.gov
Resource hub mostly links to other websites
GRADES
K - 8
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
NASA's Space Place
Stellar smorgasbord of space and technology materials
GRADES
3 - 8
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
NBC Learn
Video-centric resource good for discussion starters and research
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free to Try, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Game
Power Play
Useful but bite-sized intro to states’ rights vs. federal law
GRADES
6 - 8
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
Mac, Windows
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Q-files
Enormous illustrated encyclopedia offers kid-friendly history, science
GRADES
3 - 8
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
NOT YET RATED
Website
Qlovi
Virtual library, lesson platform could be more reader friendly
GRADES
4 - 8
PRICE
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Reading A-Z
Leveled texts with extensive teaching supports
GRADES
K - 6
PRICE
Free to Try, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
ReadTheory
Useful, adaptive tool for assessing, tracking reading ability
GRADES
K - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Science News for Students
Cool STEM articles make for fun, informative reading
GRADES
3 - 8
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
Simple English Wikipedia
Adapted resource can help some ELLs, with potential for other students
GRADES
5 - 12
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
App
The Sandbox
Kids build subject-area knowledge as they create their own worlds
GRADES
5 - 9
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
TimeEdge
Digital news source builds literacy and measures progress
GRADES
7 - 8
PRICE
Free to Try, Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
NOT YET RATED
Game
Word Raider: Quest
Good variety of vocab study but lacks inventive game design
GRADES
6 - 8
PRICE
Free to Try, Paid
PLATFORM
Linux, Mac, Windows
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
NOT YET RATED
App
Field Day: Project-Based Learning Think & Do Tool
Well-intentioned PBL tool shows promise, needs consistency, support
GRADES
4 - 12
PRICE
Paid
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
TEACHER RATING
Website
LearnZillion
Worthwhile, yet somewhat limited support for Common Core ELA skills
GRADES
7 - 8
PRICE
Free
PLATFORM
n/a
COMMON SENSE RATING
NOT YET RATED
TEACHER RATING