I have been invited to attend the 20th Annual National Conference on Family Literacy. I am very excited about attending this conference. One of the things they have asked me to do was to send digital images of blogs, wikis, etc. to share at the panel presentation I will be a part of. This reminded me that I hadn't written a blog post about Wonderopolis™. I wrote a blog post about Thinkfinity resources for Black History Month, one for Smithsonian's History Explorer, and Thinkfinity from Verizon.
Wonderopolis™ is a brought to us from the National Center for Family Literacy. According to their website; "Wonderopolis™ engages and inspires families in the pursuit of education and learning together." I really love the use of engages and inspires families. As I go through the daily Wonders, I see lots of things that I have wondered about. Some of my favorites have been #20 What Makes Popcorn Pop; #21 What Fairy Tale Ending Would You Change; and #149 How Many Peanuts are in a Jar of Peanut Butter. I like #20 and #149 because I like eating popcorn and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (separately, not at the same time). #21 I like because I have shared with teachers the ReadWriteThink lesson plan resources on Fractured Fairy Tales and this fits right into those resources.
Some other things that I like about the wonders of the day:
There is always an introductory video. This is always a good lead into a lesson or activity.
Questions are listed of what people have wondered about. These would be good "Essential Questions" to start out with.
The "Did You Know" section and "Try it Out" section gives you an explanation of the wonder and some extension activities to try.
The two that I like the best are: vocabulary words and lesson plans attached to the wonder. These are huge! We are always trying to get our students and children to build their vocabulary. If a teacher has an interactive white board, they could take these vocabulary words and make activities for students. Then, they could create extension activities using the lesson plan attached.
One of the past wonders (on dictionary's I think) had a great idea for vocabulary. It said to go to a daily word website, write the word down on an index card, write the definition, draw a picture to illustrate the word, and then share it with someone. Instead of writing the word down on paper, another idea would be to create a Glog (using EDU Glogster). The students could do the same thing on a Glog as on an index card, but it would be digital and could be shared with other classes.
Why don't you go and check out Wonderopolis™ and view the wonders of this website.