May 1997



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By Brad Ross

NetWatch is Professionally Speaking’s Internet column. I’ll be reviewing popular and lesser-known web sites, as well as the latest developments on the College’s own web site in each edition of the magazine.

Your feedback is important. I’d like to hear from you - whether it’s a solid site worth mentioning here, a site an Ontario teacher has developed, or the kinds of sites you’d like to see explored. Drop me an e-mail at .

As new and updated sites appear daily on the World Wide Web, it’s almost impossible - it is impossible - to hit them all. Using the keyword 'teacher' on the Excite search engine, for example, I found 366,839 sites that contain something - anything - to do with teachers.

Of course, only a handful would be relevant and I could always narrow my search to, say, 'teachers Ontario', but that search alone pulls up 166 sites. Certainly more manageable, but still a lot to visit.

The four sites reviewed below are potential resources for the practicing, or about-to-be-practicing, teacher. Some may be familiar, others less-known, but all have links to other sites, so the surfing potential is boundless.

The College web site

We’ve registered more than 78,000 visits to our web site since its creation last fall. Many hits were generated by the run-up to the election in February, but it’s still a web site worth checking out. Just add us to your Bookmarks.

The Professional Affairs Department’s page is now active - and interactive. The two units within Professional Affairs, Accreditation and Standards of Practice and Education, both pose questions on the site every two weeks soliciting feedback. In turn, the feedback received is being posted on the page. Your opinions about pre-service training, for example, are crucial to the College. Drop by and have your say.

The College web site also has a What’s New page. Links are there to news releases and updated or new pages. After two weeks, those links will revert to their original homepage. Another reason to visit often.



TVO PD Online for Teachers!

Ontario’s public broadcaster, TVOntario, has developed a wealth of material for teachers, ranging from something called 'TVO Technoteacher' which helps with technology-related issues, to 'CurricuLine,' a link with unlimited curriculum-related resources. Graphically rich, you can spend a lot of time here - well worth a Bookmark.

A Homepage For New Math Teachers

Terri Santi, a math teacher in Ithaca, N.Y., has developed this easy-to-use, content-driven web site for, as the title suggests, new mathematics teachers. Light on graphics, the site has nine subject areas: - How to Start Making Connections - A Clear Lesson - Multicultural Mathematics - Best Problem of the Month -Last Month’s Problem - Resources for New Math Teachers - Classroom Management - Other Professional Suggestions - Great Sites. The 'problems' posed by Santi are worth the trip alone.

Access Excellence Resource Center -
Web Resources For Science Teachers

Neuroscience for kids? Why not. Want to know about the 'functional divisions of the cerebral cortex' or 'compare the brains of nine different species'? This is the site.

The graphics load quickly, providing detailed photographs and illustrations. The site also contains a wide array of resources and links to other science-related web sites. Everything from astronomy to microscopy to ethical issues in science can be found here. It also has a list of links to 'teachers’ pages.'

Lesson Plans Using Internet Web Sites

Teacher Kathy Reeves offers some useful tips and solutions on how to use the Internet as a teaching aid. She offers some of her own plans, and those of others. Graphically heavy, you may find the site takes some time to load, but Reeves shares some useful tips and links. For example, on studying ants for Grades 3 and 5, Reeves lays out the objective of the lesson ('the students will be able to rank ants according to how much of an insect pest they are in a household') and activities the students are expected to carry out.

Brad Ross is Webmaster and Communications Officer at the Ontario College of Teachers. His e-mail address is .