Common Sense

TOP PICKS | 28 TOOLS

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.

 

Continue reading

Top Picks

RELATED

PrintPrint | Save as PDF

Digital Planners

Common Curriculum

Sleek lesson planner replaces bulky binders, promotes collaboration

Bottom line: Flexible and collaborative lesson planning, calendar design, and classroom site creator save teachers precious time.

Planboard

Handy one-stop digital lesson planner saves time

Bottom line: Simplifies lesson planning with an intuitive, easy-to-use interface.

Standards Planner

A step up from standard calendars but has room to grow

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

PlanbookEdu

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.

Teachers.io

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

Nearpod

Engage and assess students with media, videos, and interactive slides

Bottom line: This is a great tool with a vast content library and the teacher- or student-paced learning can unlock the potential of 1-to-1 environments.

Teacherly

Collaborative lesson planning software supports live and asynchronous instruction

Bottom line: This teacher-centric platform may win over some educators, but students might not be as impressed.

Wizer

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.

Spiral

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.

Edpuzzle

Crop, customize, and remix online video content with interactive tool

Bottom line: As a tool for the flipped classroom or for student-led creation, a cool tool for teachers to create and share engaging video content.

LessonUp

Flexible interactive presentation tool engages kids at school and home

Bottom line: LessonUp is for teachers who like designing unique lessons to reach every learner.

Blendspace

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

Bottom line: Allows you to incorporate lots of multimedia resources, but be discerning with content and assessments to avoid lazy teaching or learning.

ClassFlow

Robust lesson creation and delivery tool helps with assessment

Bottom line: In the hands of a determined teacher, this platform's useful suite of tools can support learning experiences that move from instruction to assessment and back.

Online Resources

BetterLesson

Exemplary lessons, strategies, and coaching from master teachers

Bottom line: Take advantage of the offerings of this professional community to improve the quality of your classroom instruction.

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.

ReadWriteThink

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.

Tailor-ED

Create differentiated math lessons and assessments in minutes

Bottom line: Easy differentiation and unique insights that can improve math instruction.

LearnZillion

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.

Gooru

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

Kiddom

LMS offers tangible options to differentiate learning

Bottom line: An excellent option for monitoring individual progress toward goals, but teachers will need to be deliberate when selecting and assigning content.

Otus

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 professional development to take full advantage.

Common Sense Selection

Google Classroom

Exceptional, simple communication, collaboration, and document sharing

Bottom line: Though it doesn't have it all, it's an incredible tool for managing and organizing learning.

Common Sense Selection

Schoology

Free LMS for digital classrooms packed with possibilities

Bottom line: This is an LMS that offers rich learning and collaboration experiences when matched with creative tasks and assessments.

PowerSchool

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

See related resources