Resources for Grades 9–12

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Thank you for being my light!

Activity

Preschool–grade 12

Thank You Cards

Show you care by sending a thank you card. Choose to print, color, or send electronically.

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child writing a letter

Lesson

grades 4–12

Letters of Gratitude to Essential Workers

Write a meaningful letter of thanks to essential workers that returns their acts of service and kindness.

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food and climate change

Interactive

grades 9–12

Food and Climate Change

Find connections between what we grow, eat, and throw away and the impact of climate change.

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helping the environment and climate change

Article/Ebook

grades 9–12

What Can You Do About Climate Change?

Check out this teen's interview with an expert about climate change and learn what young people can actually do about it.

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how to write fiction that comes alive

Selected by

TKSST

Video

grades 6–12

How to Write Fiction That Comes Alive

Learn how writers use descriptive language to engage a reader's senses. Then try some of the techniques from the video in your own writing.

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Article/Ebook

grades 10–12

The Art of a Good Interview

Boost your citizen-journalist skills with this brief intro to interviewing. Then practice by interviewing a family member, either in person or by phone or video.

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evolution of the book

Selected by

TKSST

Video

grades 5–12

Evolution of the Book

What makes a book a book? Learn about the origins of bookmaking from design and fonts to paper and spines.

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book cover art

Audio

grades 1–12

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Listen to all two hours and 44 minutes of Scarlett Johansson reading this classic tale of madcap adventure.

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a hero's journey

Selected by

TKSST

Video

grades 6–12

A Hero's Journey

Learn about the story structure of the hero, from ancient warriors to modern-day Harry Potter. The variations come from the same template: the monomyth.

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podcast title picture

Audio

grades 11–12

Listen to Ulysses

Tune in to this dramatic, accessible reading and re-creation of James Joyce's daunting literary classic Ulysses.

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Lord of the Flies

Video

grades 7–12

Why You Should Read Lord of the Flies

Explore author William Golding's motivations for writing his most notable novel. Then read the novel and decide whether you agree with the novel's worldview.

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"Poetry" printed with an old typewriter

Article/Ebook

grades 9–12

What It Means to Teach

After you read this poem, think about the best teachers you've had, and whether or not you agree with what the poem says about the best teachers.

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Thank you for being my light!

Activity

Preschool–grade 12

Thank You Cards

Show you care by sending a thank you card. Choose to print, color, or send electronically.

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knowledge of self

Activity

grades 9–12

Knowledge of Self

Try out this self-paced writing and reflection activity to learn more about oral poetry, and take a stab at writing your own.

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Words Words Words

Activity

grades 9–12

Rhyme + Association + Poetry = Rap

Grow your familiarity with the mechanics of spoken word and rap, and reflect on what rap and poetry have in common.

Activity

grades 6–12

Family Newsletter

Make and send out a family newsletter. It can be digital or just stapled paper. Try including a variety of stuff: news, interviews, history, recipes, and more.

Wide Open School's logo
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great thanksgiving listen

Activity

grades 9–12

The Great Thanksgiving Listen

Interview an elder or loved one in person or virtually, and share your own unique oral history with the world.

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if i ruled the world

Activity

grades 9–12

If I Ruled the World

Reflect on your biggest concerns with the world today, and imagine how you would make change in your local community and beyond.

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where are you from

Activity

grades 9–12

Where Are You From?

Celebrate your identity and your community with this self-paced writing and reflection activity.

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similes and metaphors

Activity

grades 9–12

Similes and Metaphors

Practice the art of storytelling and learn ways to make your writing and rhyming stronger.

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story sparks

Activity

grades 7–12

18 Story Sparks to Get You Writing

Create your own short story inspired by photographs and illustrations.

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where would you live

Activity

grades 6–12

Where Would You Live?

Choose three cities to research, and use the Quick Facts website at the top to answer the questions. Which city is your "winner" and why?

Activity

grades 6–12

From Thought to Story

Get a pen and one sheet of paper. Find a quiet place and start writing whatever comes to mind without stopping. Now try to make that into a story with a clear start and end.

Wide Open School's logo

Activity

grades 6–12

Book Club

Create conversations with friends, family, or community members around books. Pick your reading list and schedule time for discussions.

Wide Open School's logo
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helping the environment and climate change

Article/Ebook

grades 9–12

What Can You Do About Climate Change?

Check out this teen's interview with an expert about climate change and learn what young people can actually do about it.

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Article/Ebook

grades 10–12

The Art of a Good Interview

Boost your citizen-journalist skills with this brief intro to interviewing. Then practice by interviewing a family member, either in person or by phone or video.

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"Poetry" printed with an old typewriter

Article/Ebook

grades 9–12

What It Means to Teach

After you read this poem, think about the best teachers you've had, and whether or not you agree with what the poem says about the best teachers.

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person writing in a journal

Article/Ebook

grades 6–12

Family Legends

After you read the poem, write about your own family legend or story with as much detail as you can.

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sonia sanchez

Article/Ebook

grades 6–12

How Big Is Your Voice?

Read this poem and consider the voice or perspective it represents. What voice might you describe? Use this poem as inspiration to write your own.

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A nurse at work

Article/Ebook

grades 6–12

It's a Fact: Nurses Are Amazing

Read this article about nurses in Albania, identify the main idea, and find three facts that support it.

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a tale of two alexanders

Article/Ebook

grades 10–12

A Tale of Two Alexanders

Read this article about two of the most influential writers in French and Russian literature, who many don't realize have African ancestry.

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a wild west legend

Article/Ebook

grades 10–12

A Wild West Legend

Saddle up for a first-person tale of the Wild West written by Nat Love, whose storied adventures took him from the plantation to the open range.

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Wilma Rudolph

Article/Ebook

grades 3–12

Essential Black History Texts

Browse, select, and read from this great collection of nonfiction and fiction texts written by Black writers, artists, and activists.

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sheet of paper with a heart-shaped coffee stain

Article/Ebook

grades 7–12

Importance of Love

After you read this poem, write one sentence that captures its theme. Then write about the role of love among our basic needs.

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Women dancing to celebrate Cinco de Mayo

Article/Ebook

grades 9–12

Celebrate, Not Appropriate

Read this article about what celebrating someone's culture can mean, and then do some research and write about a culture you'd like to celebrate.

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Mother and daughter hugging

Article/Ebook

grades 3–12

Appreciating the Small Things

Thinking about your mother or another caregiver, identify some of the everyday ways that person shows you love. Show your appreciation with a note or hug.

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book cover art

Audio

grades 1–12

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Listen to all two hours and 44 minutes of Scarlett Johansson reading this classic tale of madcap adventure.

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podcast title picture

Audio

grades 11–12

Listen to Ulysses

Tune in to this dramatic, accessible reading and re-creation of James Joyce's daunting literary classic Ulysses.

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drawing of a cougar

Audio

grades 9–12

The Most Dangerous Game

Gather around to listen to this classic one-hour story that's gruesome and creepy but sure to spark interesting conversations.

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native son

Audio

grades 10–12

Native Son

Listen to this classic novel by Richard Wright about race, violence, and being Black in America.

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drawing of wizard of oz

Audio

grades K–12

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Listen to the first volume of L. Frank Baum's classic story as you imagine yourself traipsing through a magical land. Free on iTunes.

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Kodak photos

Audio

grades 6–12

Anne Frank

Take some time to listen to this stirring story of a young girl hiding from the Nazis during WWII. Free on Hoopla with a library card.

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have trouble remembering when to use i.e. or e.g.?

Audio

grades 9–12

I.e. vs. E.g.

Ever wonder how these abbreviations differ? Better yet, ever wonder what they even mean? Find out in this short podcast.

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an exclamation point

Audio

grades 9–12

Exclamation Points!

Get excited about this most intense of punctuation marks! Where did it come from? Why do we use it? And are we using it too much?

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novel's cover art

Audio

grades 7–12

Solo

Listen to this novel in verse narrated by the author, Kwame Alexander, about the life of a troubled rock star.

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drawing of a cherry blossom tree

Audio

grades 7–9

Untwine

Listen to this poignant story of grief and resilience as a sister deals with the loss of her twin. Free on Hoopla with a library card.

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book cover art

Audio

grades 7–12

The Bone Witch

Listen to this dark, lyrical fantasy story about raising the dead. It's the first of a trilogy that parents and teens might enjoy together.

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Audio

grades 9–12

Yes, There Is a Baby

Gather around your speaker to hear the clever way a teen girl got around a strict mother's rules many years ago. Some mature themes.

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food and climate change

Interactive

grades 9–12

Food and Climate Change

Find connections between what we grow, eat, and throw away and the impact of climate change.

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an old theater

Interactive

grades 6–12

Visit a Famous Theater

Take a 360-degree online tour of the Globe Theatre in London, where Shakespeare's most famous plays were performed.

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Interactive

grades 7–12

BBC iReporter

Play this game, and then share what you learned with a family member or teacher. What'd you learn about newsrooms? What’s one way to be more critical and responsible online?

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child writing a letter

Lesson

grades 4–12

Letters of Gratitude to Essential Workers

Write a meaningful letter of thanks to essential workers that returns their acts of service and kindness.

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what is grammar

Lesson

grades 6–12

Grammar Groundwork

Ever wonder if your modifier is dangling? And how semicolons work? From parts of speech to proper punctuation, get all your grammar answers here.

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lyricism

Lesson

grades 7–12

Rap Lyricism 101

Work through these five lessons, full of creative activities that connect core writing skills to hip-hop history and technique.

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Lesson

grades 8–12

Dig Deeper Into Science News

Use this video and discussion guide to understand how headlines shape the way we interpret science–and health–related news.

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Lesson

grades 6–10

Your Social Identity

Read up on the concept of social identity, then apply it to your own life. What social identities do you have? Draw and describe them.

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Lesson

grades 6–12

The Great Depression, Ken Burns in the Classroom

Examine this gallery of photos taken during the Great Depression. Use the Photo Analysis Worksheet to guide your thinking.

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Lesson

grades 9–12

The Universe

Work through this 50-minute lesson on the universe's origins that kicks off Big History's multidisciplinary curriculum.

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Lesson

grades 6–12

Letters, Undelivered

Write a letter to someone important that you'll never actually send. Afterward, reflect on the experience.

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portrait of frederick douglass

Lesson

grades 6–12

Important Activist: Frederick Douglass

Visit this online exhibition to read about Frederick Douglass and see the actual documents he wrote.

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how to write fiction that comes alive

Selected by

TKSST

Video

grades 6–12

How to Write Fiction That Comes Alive

Learn how writers use descriptive language to engage a reader's senses. Then try some of the techniques from the video in your own writing.

Play button
evolution of the book

Selected by

TKSST

Video

grades 5–12

Evolution of the Book

What makes a book a book? Learn about the origins of bookmaking from design and fonts to paper and spines.

Play button
a hero's journey

Selected by

TKSST

Video

grades 6–12

A Hero's Journey

Learn about the story structure of the hero, from ancient warriors to modern-day Harry Potter. The variations come from the same template: the monomyth.

New tab
Lord of the Flies

Video

grades 7–12

Why You Should Read Lord of the Flies

Explore author William Golding's motivations for writing his most notable novel. Then read the novel and decide whether you agree with the novel's worldview.

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hip-hop artist Nas

Video

grades 9–12

Leaves of Grass

Celebrate Walt Whitman's life by reading Leaves of Grass with Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, hip-hop artist Nas, and an array of contemporary poets.

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Picture of Langston Hughes

Video

grades 6–10

Langston Hughes' "Harlem"

Introduce yourself to Hughes' most famous poem and his use of figurative language. Then write your own "Harlem"-inspired poem.

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making sense of spelling

Selected by

TKSST

Video

grades 7–12

Making Sense of Spelling

Ever wonder why "two" sounds like "to" even with the "w" added? Watch and discover the relationship between words and spelling.

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Alain Locke

Video

grades 8–12

Locke's Legacy

Learn about the life and point of view of Alain Locke, whose work set the stage for the Harlem Renaissance and who battled against racism.

Video

grades 8–12

Whatever it Takes to Speak Your Mind

Watch the Virtual Cipher where youth perform through spoken word, rap, and poetry.

Video

grades 6–12

A Young Poet's Perspective

Listen to this 12-year-old's poem and identify the images and repetition that get his message across. Then create something that shares your perspective.

Video

grades 6–12

What Makes Something a Poem?

Watch this video to learn if your favorite song or an especially poignant post or tweet could be considered poetry.

Video

grades 3–12

Writers Speak to Kids: Nick Bruel

Nick Bruel, author and illustrator of the "Bad Kitty" series, discusses how he knew he wanted to be a writer and what he likes best about writing picture books.

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latinx, hispanic, and chicano geniuses

Website/App

grades 6–12

Latinx, Hispanic, and Chicano Genius

Browse and read—or learn about—the work of Latinx, Hispanic, and Chicano artists, activists, and more. (Note: Some texts require sign-in.)

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Website/App

Preschool–grade 12

Libby

Check out ebooks and audiobooks from public libraries for free. Read and listen to your selections directly within the app.

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discover her story

Website/App

grades 6–12

Discover Her Story

Choose a theme to explore behind-the-scenes videos, stories, and objects featuring women who have shaped America as we know it.

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funny studying

Website/App

grades 6–12

Studying Has Never Been Funnier

Check out the "free stuff" for math, English, and more. As you learn, enjoy the sometimes sarcastic commentary about studying.

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math in various languages

Website/App

grades 3–12

Math in Three Languages

Choose a language -- English, Spanish, or Portuguese -- then click on a math concept to get some information. Explore other topics, too!

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Boy working on problem - Knowledge on the Go

Website/App

Preschool–grade 12

Great Minds: Knowledge on the Go

Build knowledge with these high-quality, daily instructional video lessons for ELA (grades K–8), math (grades K–12), and science (grades 3–5).

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illustration of people in a classroom lab

Website/App

grades 4–10

Frontiers for Young Minds

Read and discuss articles on cutting-edge science discoveries written by scientists and reviewed by kids and teens.

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Website/App

grades 1–9

Personalized Writing and Grammar Help

Flex your grammar muscles with this interactive tool. Take the diagnostic quiz, then try some writing activities that are just right for your level.

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Website/App

grades 8–12

Share Your Knowledge

Think of something you know and read a lot about. Use Hypothes.is' annotation tool to add your insight to something you've read.

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Website/App

grades 6–12

Grammarly

Compose clear, mistake-free writing that makes the right impression with Grammarly’s writing assistant.

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Worksheet

grades 6–12

No Writer's Block Here!

Print this packet and use it to break through writer's block. Along the way you'll practice writing, develop your skills, and create cool stuff.

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being smart about the coronavirus

Worksheet

grades 6–12

Thinking Critically About COVID-19

Complete these three thinking and writing activities to get a handle on some of the key terms and concepts associated with the coronavirus pandemic.

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Worksheet

grades 3–12

Creative Quick-Writes

Choose (at random) one of the prompts and spend some time writing. If it goes well, carve out some time each day to do more.