Thursday, October 19, 2017

My Top Three Educational Sites for Middle School Social Studies by Mike Siekkinen

Brainpop.com- very reasonable pricing for a school license. Fun, fast and informative website for history, geography, economics and culture. I use the site to supplement my classroom instruction. Students receive a login and password and then go to the topic I assign. I have students view the video that is with each topic and then explore the area. There are games and activities associated with each of the topics as well as a quiz on the subject matter. I have my students email the results or take a screen shot of the final results. I place an 80% or higher requirement on students and they are allowed to retake the quizzes until passing grades are obtained. Site is fun and middle schoolers are not to “old” for cartoons!


Icivics.org- awesome free website on government and politics. Lots of games that are fun and educational. Also many levels, so this site can work for all ages. Games are interactive and are great to use when teaching government. Website has the endorsement and a founder of none other than Sandra Day O’Connor. Lots of fun and you sneak learning in. My students really enjoy this site.

Freedomflix.com- interactive online textbook that is great for teaching civics and history. Very reasonably priced for a site license. I design web quests for my students. Each lesson has a video, interactive text with vocabulary and includes maps, timelines and pictures. Really great site that I use weekly. My students are always on a web quest supplementing my classroom instruction. I assign students web quests in Google classroom where they have options for submission of my web quest information to allow for differentiation.


Dr. Mike Siekkinen, a retired U.S. Navy submariner, became a teacher as a second career. He teaches history at St Marys Middle School as well as Adult and Career Education at Valdosta State in Georgia.