The internet provides access to a wealth of information for teachers and their students to use in learning a variety of subjects. The Open Educational Resources (OER) movement seeks organize and provide these kinds of resources to help teachers take advantage of this treasure trove, and many private media organizations also provide free access to their content. In addition, there are many researchers, colleges and universities, fellow teachers and other education organizations that share great content to assist with instruction and learning. The high-quality resources below are but small fraction of what is available, and we will continue to add more as we come across them in the course of our work. With so much great content available to help students understand ideas and concepts, there has never been a better time to be a teacher. Be sure to take advantage of it to help your students thrive. The information below has been divided into subject matter sub-topics corresponding to the buttons below to make it easier to find the information you want. Don’t miss our other Online Resources pages that cover areas such as Teaching and Instruction, Childhood Health and Safety, Montessori, Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), the Prepared Environment, and Educational Technology.

We continue to add resources as we find and review them, so be sure and check the pages often. To see new sites as we add them, visit the ClassrooMechanics Facebook page or better yet, sign up for our newsletter where we feature the new web resources along with other content and information of use to your Montessori practice.

Science Resources

Google’s newest educational offering, ScienceJournal, is an amazing app that works on a variety of devices to capture all sorts of experimental data. Teach your students the scientific method by doing fun, hands-on experiments and gathering measurements using a smart device. Google has provided some pre-made lessons or existing lessons can be modified to include the apps capabilities. Transforming the common place mobile device into a science laboratory will encourage students to see everyday things in a new way, opening their eyes to the world around them through the power of science.

NASA for Educators is an education web site created by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and geared to teachers at all levels (Pre-K through college). It provides a huge number of resources for use in STEM education. In addition, there are links to the NASA Wavelength site, the NASA Education YouTube Channel and more. This robust digital collection of Earth and space science resources for educators has undergone a peer-review process by educators and scientists to ensure the content is accurate and useful in an educational setting.

The Smithsonian Science Education Center’s mission is to transform and improve the learning and teaching of science for preK-8 students. They are dedicated to the establishment of effective science programs for all students. To contribute to that goal, the SSEC builds awareness for P-12 science education reform among state and district leaders, conducts programs that support the professional growth of P-12 teachers and school leaders, and engages in research and curriculum development (including their comprehensive K-8, research-based science curriculum program: Science and Technology ConceptsTM (STC Elementary and Middle School)—all to help transform the teaching and learning of science in the United States and throughout the world.

Learning Science is a site developed by Temple University that gathers together a variety of online resources for teaching science, including videos, news, games, and more. The content is intended for use by all K-12 students and teachers of science for use in classrooms and beyond. The site is organized by grade level and subject matter making it easy to find materials relevant to specific age groups. It is also aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards, a comprehensive set of curriculum guidelines developed for science education.

This Common Sense Coding page offers lots of resources, practical tips, and advice to help teachers plan engaging and inclusive coding lessons in their classrooms. Coding can teach students skills that apply across the curriculum, beyond computer science. Learning to code also EMPOWERS students to become producers, not just consumers, of digital media.

Mathematics Resources

SNAP-Scaffolding for Numerical Synapses is the project of a former Montessori teacher who hopes to pique interest in and encourage a lifelong love of numbers, regardless of age. The resources here cover the numbers one through ten and provide lots of suggestions for exploring each digit with children in an early childhood learning context. Though it was created as a part of her earning her Montessori teaching certificate, the lessons can stand alone. This is a brilliant resource for helping children begin to see the important role that numbers play in our world and a great way to help them develop an interest in numeracy and mathematics. This is a great waypoint on the road to other STEM subjects.

The main goal of YouCubed.org is to inspire, educate and empower teachers of mathematics by transforming the latest research on math learning into accessible and practical forms. Mathematics is often the reason that students leave STEM, particularly girls and some students of color. YouCubed aims to change this by sharing the classroom methods that are needed for more successful mathematics instruction. Their site provides research based teaching methods, math tasks, videos, and ideas that can significantly reduce math failure and inequality in the United States and beyond.

Language Resources

The National Writing Project focuses the knowledge, expertise, and leadership of our nation’s educators on sustained efforts to improve writing and learning for all learners. The NWP is a network of web sites anchored at colleges and universities and serving teachers across disciplines and at all levels, early childhood through university. They provide professional development, develop resources, generate research, and act on knowledge to improve the teaching of writing and learning in schools and communities.

ReadWriteThink’s mission is to provide educators, parents, and afterschool professionals with access to the highest quality practices in reading and language arts instruction by offering the very best in free materials. All ReadWriteThink lesson plans are based on the NCTE/IRA Standards for the English Language Arts. The International Reading Association and the National Council of Teachers of English have a shared purpose to ensure that all students are knowledgeable and proficient users of language so that they may succeed in school, participate as informed citizens, find challenging and rewarding work, appreciate and contribute to our culture, and pursue their own goals and interests as independent learners throughout their life.

DOGObooks is where kids discover, review and rate books. Their goal is to provide a fun, safe and interactive environment for children to share their reactions, thoughts and opinions about books. All book selections and reviews are moderated prior to being published.

Social Studies Resources

Big History is a social studies course that spans 13.8 billion years. It weaves insights from many disciplines to form a single story that helps us better understand people, civilizations, and how we are connected to everything around us. The Big History Project is available online for free with just a registration. While it is primarily aimed at middle- and high-school students it can be taken by anyone. The lessons can be run over the course of a full year or semester, or it can be adapted to your school’s needs. Use the teacher-generated lessons or create your own using the content library. Everything is online, so content is always available, up to date, and easy to download. See also the wonderful DK companion book.

Recent Update: The History Channel (part of A+E Network) created a series of half hour episodes of Big History. They were available for free on Hoopla, on online streaming service available from many public libraries with a card.

Rick Steves Classroom Europe™️, is a FREE collection of teachable moments culled from all 120 full-length episodes of his successful Rick Steves’ Europe television program. This amazing Social Studies resource will give students a multimedia introduction to many of the famous historical and cultural sites throughout Europe. These multimodal additions to existing social studies lessons will make learning more memorable and spark children’s curiosity about other parts of the World. It is made to be intuitive and easy to use and includes tools for searching and collecting the clips most relevant to a lesson.

The National Geographic Education site offers a variety of resources and programs to educators to aid student learning, including a resource library, virtual expeditions, professional development and grants, and student competitions. The Resource Library offers high-quality, standards-based, educational resources and activities, including free maps, lesson plans, imagery, interactives, and reference materials that have been curated into collections that cover science, exploration and storytelling. The professional learning opportunities are aimed at educators engaging with students from pre-K to post-secondary and range from in-the-field projects to online networks to grant opportunities and courses. The virtual expeditions with National Geographic Explorers take classrooms to amazing destinations where they can discover more of our amazing world. Students can also participate in the Society’s innovative challenges and competitions, such as the Geo Bee and the Geo Challenge. Explore the world!

EDSITEment offers a treasure trove for teachers, students, and parents searching for high-quality material on the Internet in the subject areas of literature and language arts, foreign languages, art and culture, and history and social studies. All websites linked to EDSITEment have been reviewed for content, design, and educational impact in the classroom. They cover a wide range of humanities subjects, from American history to literature, world history and culture, language, art, and archaeology, and have been judged by humanities specialists to be of high intellectual quality. EDSITEment is a partnership between the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Trust for the Humanities.

Dollar Street was created by imagining the world as a street ordered by income. Everyone lives somewhere on the street. The poorest lives to the left and the richest to the right. Everybody else live somewhere in between. Visit all the homes on Dollar Street! In the news people in other cultures seem stranger than they are. This has to change. Displaying income on a graph does not make everyday life on different income levels understandable. Especially not in places far from home. Dollar Street visited 264 families in 50 countries and collected 30,000 photos to show how people really live so people can see for themselves what life looks like on different income levels. A great resource to use in planning lessons to help children understand basic needs and cultural differences.

Digital Literacy Resources

The News Literacy Project is a national education nonprofit offering nonpartisan, independent programs that teach students how to know what to believe in the digital age. The Project empowers educators to teach students the skills they need to become smart, active consumers of news and information and engaged, informed participants in our democracy. Students who complete the lessons in the program show significant changes in how they read and interact with the news; they also have a greater understanding of the role of a free press in a democracy. Most importantly, they can tell the difference among news, advertising and misinformation.

Multiple Subject Resources

Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching and learning materials that you may freely use and reuse at no cost, and without needing to ask permission. Unlike copyrighted resources, OER have been authored or created by an individual or organization that chooses to retain few, if any, ownership rights. From a single point of access, you can search, browse, and evaluate resources in OER Commons’ growing collection of over 50,000 high-quality holdings. OER Commons forges alliances between trusted content providers and creative users and re-users of OER. The worldwide OER movement is rooted in the human right to access high-quality education. This shift in educational practice is not just about cost savings and easy access to openly licensed content; it’s about participation and co-creation. Open Educational Resources (OER) offer opportunities for systemic change in teaching and learning content through engaging educators in new participatory processes and effective technologies for engaging with learning.

Open Culture brings together high-quality cultural and educational media for the worldwide lifelong learning community. The internet has given us great amounts of intelligent audio and video that is all free. It’s all enriching. However, it is also scattered across the web, and not easy to find. This organizations whole mission is to centralize this content, curate it, and give you access to this high quality content whenever and wherever you want it. There is access to books, movies, audiobooks, online courses, and best of all, a section just for kids. Whether you are a teacher looking for lesson materials, a family wanting something to watch, or a child trying to find cool content, Open Culture has great selections that are all FREE!

Life Lab is a national leader in the garden-based learning movement with over thirty-five years of work with young people in gardens. Their site provides a wealth of resources for teachers and parents interested in using gardening and food cultivation as a curriculum to teach children a variety of subjects. Through workshops and consultations, they provide tens of thousands of educators across the country with the inspiration and information necessary to engage young people in gardens and on farms to promote experiential learning for people of all ages. Their award-winning publications are the go-to resource for educators and families interested in engaging young people in gardens and gardening.

Annenberg Learner’s mission is to advance excellent teaching in American schools through the development and distribution of multimedia resources for teaching and learning. The site contains more than 100 multimedia courses and workshops to help teachers keep current on the content they teach. Professional development resources provide teachers with research on the most effective teaching strategies along with their connection to national education content standards, and examples of these principles applied in real classrooms. The video components are paired with extensive Web sites that include online texts, course and workshop guides, and extensive background information to enhance the learning experience. Using these resources, teachers can learn from experts, other teachers, and even students who reveal their unique interpretations of the content. Learner.org is a division of the Annenberg Foundation, which funds a wide range of programs in education and other areas.

PBS LearningMedia provides PreK-12 educators with access to free digital content and professional development opportunities designed to improve teacher effectiveness and student achievement. You can access thousands of innovative, standards-aligned digital resources, compelling student experiences, and professional development opportunities through this fantastic web site. With PBS LearningMedia for Students, learners of any age can create their own learning experiences by engaging directly with powerful, innovative content. PBS LearningMedia for teachers offers professional development opportunities for educators looking for tools and training that will help to support 21st century instruction, including free webinars about the latest tech trends to graduate-level courses from PBS TeacherLine.

Education World is a complete online resource that teachers, administrators and school staff can visit each day to find high-quality and in-depth original content. The site is updated daily and offers: carefully curated news briefs on topics that matter to educators; Lesson plans, printables, worksheets and thousands of other classroom-ready resources; EdTech tips and ideas as well as reviews of apps, websites and tech products; and a huge library of professional development articles and columns.

Wonderopolis® is a place where natural curiosity and imagination lead to exploration and discovery in learners of all ages. Each day, they pose an intriguing question—the Wonder of the Day®—and explore it in a variety of ways. Wonderopolis® was created by the National Center for Families Learning (NCFL) in 2010, and it has become one of the most popular education sites on the web. The excitement of learning that comes from curiosity and wonder is undeniable, and Wonderopolis® helps create learning moments in everyday life—ones that fit in with dinner preparations, carpool responsibilities, a stolen moment between breakfast and the bus, or within school curriculum and education programs. From the very beginning, Wonderopolis® has been lauded for our fresh approach to wonder and learning. Don’t miss their additional site aimed at educators: http://wg.wonderopolis.org/ .