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ILLA Blogs

Commentary and reviews by classical Lutheran education commentators.

FreeDictionary.com - HTML Blocks for School

If your school has a website maintained by someone you know, you might enjoy adding some free content using FreeDictionary.com. Other educational widgets are also available with a bit of "Googling."

This link has examples of what the blocks can do on the left-hand side and the HTML code in the boxes on the right. You can easily use these, for example, to look up all the words which end in "-able" and all the words ending in "-ible" to make a comparison. There are vocabulary activities and this-day-in-history resources as well.

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The Fallacy Detective

Students in my classes have responded well to Nathaniel and Hans Bluedorn's The Fallacy Detective and The Thinking Toolbox.

The books are available at a discount to Christian schools -- and some of the web resources include a Short List of Fallacies and How to Use The Thinking Toolbox in a Classroom.

Catherine Duffy has a critical review here.


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4D National Geographic Puzzles!

"Wow! What's THAT?" I exlaimed to my wife (who teaches Grades 1-2). She was working on a jigsaw puzzle of a map of the Nile delta with 3D figurines of Egyptian architecture . . . and scanning them on her phone for multimedia connections!

National Geographic has produced a series of 4D cityscape puzzles (3D + time dimension) for Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome - as well as Paris and Chicago!

The 4D Cityscape puzzles are affordably-priced and might make a wonderful gift or activity for students during the summer or during the school year.

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. . . In-A-Sentence

Occasionally, when looking to give examples of vocabulary in context for SpellingCity lists (many of the example sentences there are poor) or Vocabulary.com or creating a quiz, I make use of two sites:




CAVEAT: Because these two sites have random ads on their pages, I do not recommend them for student use.

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The Writer's Handbook

I tend to take an eclectic approach to curriculum development rather than relying on any single series. I have enjoyed and grown in my teaching abilities by purchasing, working through, and adapting materials like Andrew Pudewa's Institute for the Excellence in Writing, Andrew Kern's The Lost Tools of Writing, and Classical Writing by Lene Mahler Jacqua and Tracy Gustillio.

There are also online resources such as The University of Wisconsin - Madison's Writer's Handbook and

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