You Might Be a Geeky Teacher If You Like to Use Hoax Sites to Teach Website Evaluation.

website_evaluation.8-10.custom_structured_siteIn this day and age when anyone with access to the internet can create a website, it is critical that we as educators teach our students how to evaluate web content. There are some great resources available for educating students on this matter, such as RADCAB, CRAP (and CRAP Rubric) Kathy Schrock’s Five W’s of Website Evaluation, Joyce Valenza's CARRDS or the University of Southern Maine’s Checklist for Evaluating Websites.
Along with checklists and articles, you will also find wonderfully funny hoax websites, aimed at testing readers on their ability to evaluate websites. These hoax sites are a great way to bring humor and hands-on evaluation into your classroom, and test your students’ web resource evaluation IQ!
Check out these 11 example hoax sites for use in your own classrooms:

  1. All About Explorers
  1. Dihydrogen Monoxide Research Division
  1. California’s Velcro Crop Under Challenge
  1. Feline Reactions to Bearded Men
  1. Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus
  1. Aluminum Foil Deflector Beanie
  1. British Stick Insect Foundation
  1. The Jackalope Conspiracy
  1. Buy Dehydrated Water
  1. Republic of Molossia
  1. Dog Island

One of my favorites is always the Dihydrogen Monoxide website, which aims to ban dihydrogen monoxide and talks in detail about its dangers. Only after a few minutes did I catch that dihydrogen monoxide, is after all, H2O!

I am starting the Explorer Unit with my 4th and 5th Graders.  We are launching in edmodo and here is a tutorial for start the unit.  I actually have a substitute and love to use a screencast when I have a sub.  This time I used Screencastomatic.  I also like Screenr.  All About Explorers has lessons, lesson plans and websites with incorrect information.  The students completely fell for using the sites for researching their explorers.  They then have to learn to search the right way and evaluate websites and information sources that they can trust.  In the end, they email the webmaster and ask them to correct the incorrect information based on their research.  It is such an important conversation to have with students.  

Happy Hoax Hunting!

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