These 15 sites, culled from the

Netwatch section of past issues of eSchool News, represent the editors’ picks for the best on the web. If you’re just beginning your online journey, they’re a great place to start.



Created by the Network for Instructional TV Inc., TeachersFirst is a free, one-stop site containing high-quality internet resources for the classroom, sorted by subject and grade level–plus discussion groups, professional resources, and a “Hot Topics” section to keep you abreast of current issues.

(Dec. 1998/Jan. 1999)

PBS TeacherSource

This site from one of America’s best-loved teacher resources features a constantly growing inventory of more than 1,000 free lesson plans, teacher guides, and online activities. Most are designed to complement PBS programming.

(Dec. 1998/Jan. 1999)

Ask Dr. Math

Now in its fifth year, this internet Q&A service sponsored by Swarthmore College’s Math Forum remains one of the best online sources for math help. The site lists frequently-asked elementary, middle, and high school math questions. If you can’t find the answer to the question you’re looking for, you can submit your own question online or via eMail.

(Nov. 1998)

The New York Times Learning Network

This site from the New York Times brings the news into classrooms in engaging ways. A daily feature story from the Times is accompanied by lesson plans developed in conjunction with New York’s Bank Street College of Education.

(Nov. 1998)

Discovery Channel School

This site serves as a bridge between the Discovery Channel’s educational programming and the K-12 classroom. Structured around the themes addressed by the channel’s programming, it includes lesson plans, teaching suggestions, and forums for discussion.

(Oct. 1998)

Federal Resources for Educational Excellence (FREE)

FREE is a collection of hundreds of federally supported online resources for education. Links grouped by subject area–like art, history, and science–lead to sites sponsored by such agencies as the National Endowment for the Arts (and Humanities), the National Science Foundation, NASA, the Peace Corps, and the Library of Congress.

(June/July 1998)


Sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities in conjunction with the Council of the Great City Schools, MCI, and the National Trust for the Humanities, EDSITEment is a valuable resource for humanities teachers of any grade level.

(March 1998)

Eisenhower National Clearinghouse (ENC)

This site links math and science teachers to useful curriculum resources. A page called Digital Dozen features 13 outstanding internet sites each month.

You can also find links to the latest math and science software and browse an archive of lesson ideas.

(March 1998)


Planet K-12

This free online resource provides a wealth of information to educators, including lesson plans, reference materials, and information about technology grants, technology planning, career planning, distance learning, using the internet in the classroom, and much more.

(Dec. 1998/Jan. 1999)


This site includes job listings, a “lesson bank” where teachers can deposit (and borrow) sample lesson plans, a calendar of upcoming workshops and conferences, a mentor support center, online discussions with well-known authors and educators, and several chatboards.

(Oct. 1998)

Searching the Web

This instructional guide to finding information on the web should give both novice and experienced users some valuable tips on how to broaden or narrow their web searches.

(Oct. 1998)

Web Site Advisor’s Guide

Co-written by a former high school principal and a deputy commissioner of education, this site takes you through a step-by-step process for developing a school web site.

(Oct. 1998)

Distance Learning Resource Network

This site should supply anything you need to know about distance learning. It includes research reports, articles, examples of successful K-12 distance education programs, resources for planning your own program, even information about distance learning grants.

(May 1998)


Created by Tech Corps along with the National Cable Television Association, this is a free, self-paced internet tutorial that offers both basic and in-depth information. Topics include eMail, video conferencing, chat rooms, web page design, internet safety, and curriculum material research.

(May 1998)


A division of the Educational Resources Information Center, a federally-funded national information system sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, Syracuse University, and the CASE Center, AskERIC is a personalized internet service providing information and assistance to educators.

(March 1998)