Some of the best resources for information and inspiration come from US government agencies. Many of these agencies make that information available to teachers in the form of artifacts, background documents, and lesson plans in an effort to better inform the instruction going on across the country. You’ve already paid for it through your taxes, so take full advantage of these free teacher resources!
Library of Congress
Looking for primary sources? Why not go to the greatest library in the country? The Library of Congress not only makes a wealth of teacher resources available on its website, but it has also spent some time organizing its wares into thematic units and lessons and ready-made presentations and activities. The Library’s work is as close to turnkey as it gets in education.
Speaking of source materials, another great resource is the National Archives educator resources page. This is the home of DocsTeach, a comprehensive organizational tool that makes sources easy to find and use in the classroom.
Environmental Protection Agency
This should be an environment teacher’s homepage. The EPA, realizing just how important outreach is to its mission, might be the government’s best resource for science materials. There are games, quizzes, and great resources for science project ideas. No more “I can’t think of a project” moans from students!
National Park Service
Don’t have a national park nearby? You can still use their resources to teach a range of subjects (not just science). Lesson plans, sources, and educational opportunities like workshops and fellowships are made available to teachers every year.
School Specialty may not be affiliated with the government, but we also have a diverse set of classroom resources that are sure to give you some great lesson ideas. And just like the other free teacher resources we mentioned here, ours are free as well!
Looking for arts and crafts lesson plans and activities? You don’t even have to go far. We’ve got that for you right here at the Schoolyard!