Common Sense


Lesson Planning Apps and Websites

Looking to ditch your paper planners and go digital? With these apps and websites, you can bring lesson planning -- and design -- into the 21st century. Create custom calendars for each class, track standards across the curriculum, develop differentiated lesson templates, share schedules with parents, and find the best online resources with these top-notch tools.

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Digital Planners

Common Curriculum

Sleek lesson planner replaces bulky binders, promotes collaboration

Bottom line: Ditch pen-and-paper planning; embrace the flexibility of collaborative lesson planning and calendar design.

Metria Master Teacher Edition

All-in-one standards planning, assessment tool supports quality instruction

Bottom line: With adequate time and resources, the tool can be a fantastic organizational support to those transitioning to standards-aligned planning and assessment.


Handy one-stop digital lesson planner saves time in the long run

Bottom line: Although it requires a lot of setup time, this snappy tool centralizes the essential components of lesson planning.

Standards Planner

A step up from standard calendars but has room to grow

Bottom line: With proper maintanenance, good curation of relevant resources, and up-to-date classroom lessons, Standards Planner can give teachers and students a learning advantage.


Pretty basic online planner with a few teacher-friendly bonus features

Bottom line: Create and organize all your classes and then some on this glorified day planner, but it's not a whole lot better than the paper version.

Organizational tool helps teachers plan, communicate with students

Bottom line: Scheduling solution for teachers is at its best when used alongside student homework app.

Creation Tools


Interactive slide show tool engages students and promotes collaboration

Bottom line: This effective tool leverages the capabilities of 1-to-1 environments and brings slide shows into the 21st century.


Digital worksheet builder lets students show learning in multiple ways

Bottom line: Students will appreciate this 21st-century take on worksheets, and teachers will love all the different options for creation and assessment.


Provide instant feedback with collaborative, multimedia assessment tool

Bottom line: Engaging, easy-to-use tool that supports both formative and summative assessment while allowing for student collaboration.

TES Teach with Blendspace

Create multimedia lessons with engaging but not-so-interactive style

Bottom line: Blendspace allows you to incorporate lots of multimedia resources but can still be confusing for students.


Robust lesson-creation, presentation tool offers built-in assessment

Bottom line: This powerful tool supports connected and blended learning from instruction to assessment, though it's best used to enhance already great instruction.


Get beyond binders with digital, remixable lesson-planning tool

Bottom line: If you invest some serious time in preloading your content, this is an exceptional tool for building and using your lesson plans.

Online Resources


Exemplary Common Core-aligned lessons from rock star peers at large

Bottom line: Get a head start on the Common Core transition with this professional community for great classroom-ready lessons.

PowerMyLearning Connect

Create playlists and differentiate with quality third-party content

Bottom line: A curation of some of the best educational content on the web made easily accessible, both for students and teachers.


Excellent free resource for all things reading and writing

Bottom line: A language arts teacher's dream; lesson plans, professional development, and all-around quality support.


Quality Common Core-aligned lessons with great modeling for teachers

Bottom line: An innovative way to enhance lessons and tailor learning for individual needs.

OER Commons

Free, easy access to a wealth of resources

Bottom line: Impressive resource opens access to quality materials for all educators.

ReadWorks Digital

Research-based site makes it easy to assign, differentiate readings

Bottom line: An effective digital reinvention of the trusted ReadWorks platform that makes it simple to distribute and track high-quality reading assignments.


Personalized tool fosters exploration, teacher-led meaningful learning

Bottom line: A great portal for supplementing classroom instruction; supports independent and personalized learning.

Standards and Goals

Goalbook Toolkit

Set tailored targets with pricey but worth-it kit of tools, strategies

Bottom line: You pay for quality with Goalbook Toolkit, including access to clear, well-crafted learning goals and strategies that allow for far easier differentiation.

Common Core Standards

Complete Common Core State Standards in convenient, searchable, free resource

Bottom line: Love 'em or hate 'em, this resource puts them at your fingertips.

Next Generation Science Standards

Free resource puts Next Generation Science Standards at your fingertips

Bottom line: Super-handy resource makes science standards easy to access anytime, anywhere.

Learning Management Systems


Free LMS feels rich in offering data-driven differentiated instruction

Bottom line: This teacher-created site solves more problems than it causes, but it will take some up-front PD to take full advantage.


Top-tier LMS for digital classrooms

Bottom line: To make the most of Schoology, you'll need some ramp-up time and great tasks and assessments, but it can offer rich learning and collaboration experiences.


Elegant LMS tool keeps classroom conversation, collaboration going

Bottom line: The rare LMS designed for ease of use, and it doesn't sacrifice functionality with tons of opportunities to maximize learning, collaboration, and organization.

PowerSchool Learning

Full-featured LMS great for instructional design

Bottom line: With planning for content and design, and some restraint, teachers can create and manage relevant pages ideal for extending and transferring learning.

Get tips for using these tools in the classroom

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