Websites of the month

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             starfallStarfall Starfall is a site that many of you may already know. Regularly rated among the top 10 educational websites, Starfall offers very distinct and in-depth interactive activities geared specifically towards helping children learn to read.The interactive activities
Starfall contains a multitude of interactive activities: Starting of with sound and touch screen activities for each letter of the alphabet, to interactively helping the on screen rat ‘Zac” write a letter to his grandparents and even working together to create and understand the calendar.
Starfall also offers a large range of digital books, where each word can be sounded out, with a variety of topics from Greek mythology, to Chinese fables and classic folk tails.

Name: Starfall
Purpose: Highly interactive site based around helping kids to learn the basics of reading.


Korero Maori (please excuse the lack of macrons due to html difficulties)

Set up by the Maori Language Commission, Korero Maori aims to “raise awareness about the Maori language by increasing opportunities for people to learn and use it”. Korero Maori introduces you to the basics of te Reo through interactive applications. The use of recordings and games immerses you in the Maori language and encourages users to listen and speak the language. The website also offers reasonably experienced users the chance to maintain and further their use of the language.

Korero Maori also offers insights into the Maori culture and how the people, and the language, developed. Protocols and the myths and legends of Maori culture are also examined.

Korero Maori has also focused on creating a positive online community for the learning of te Reo. Korero Maori users can sign up for the free language club where they can speak to and learn from fellow te Reo speakers – regardless of their learning level.

Name: Korero Maori
Purpose: Interactive site that opens up the world of te Reo online for both learners and advanced speakers.

International Children’s Digital Library

The International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL) is a free to use, online book site that references and stores children’s stories from all-around the globe. ICDL has been set up to provide an online resource that showcases the variety of language and stories that entertain and educate children worldwide. Their mission statement reads “support the world’s children in becoming effective members of the global community – who exhibit tolerance and respect for diverse cultures, languages and ideas”

ICDL offers users the chance to search for books via their (the books) country of origin, language, title, author, keywords, type and even colour of the book. Once found, the books can then be read in multiple different formats and adjusted for projected reading through a cunning spiral layout.

A New Zealand perspective
ICDL has collected a range of New Zealand stories available for you to read and display via a data projector. Although limited to around 50 books, there is a collection of both English and te Reo stories provided by the national library of New Zealand.

Name: International Children’s Digital Library
Purpose: Huge online children’s book site, offering digital books from all-around the globe.

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Username: ManzanaNZ