Thursday, July 29, 2010

Thing #3

Need an expert? Remember when you used to have a 'guest speaker' travel to your school? Now you can set them up using a teleconferencing application making it easier on your 'guest speaker.' Skype or other conferencing applications would be great to use in the classroom as either a whole class activity (classroom unit studies) or by individual students for individual research topics.

Thing #2

Lots of fun alternatives for students to use! Wordle - this application seems like it can be introduced in the early grades and work its way up through high school. How can it be used by an elementary student? Books? Maybe. Let's take the Cat In the Hat. A student as young as kindergarten or first grade could read that several times. Write about the book as a whole or just their favorite parts. Then take that written text and type it into Wordle creating a visual report.
Glogster - totally fun! I already knew about Glogster- but the classroom (edu) aspect is new to me. I think this really takes reports to a new level. Students definitely have to think differently to put something together here compared to the traditional paper posterboard. It allows for video, text, pop-up lables, audio, etc. How that all ties together to create a cohesive report is what can help to raise the level of thinking students need to use. The 'trick' is not to get carried away with the product - but rather delve into the learning of the material.
I've used Animoto before so I thought I'd look at Voki. Interesting. I'm thinking that Voki would make a greater impact in an email as opposed to text alone.
Bookr - a tool for all ages! Even our youngest students can generate books on any topic! As we move up the grade levels, students could create  concept books tied back into science or social studies themes.

Thing #1

The video portrays today's reality - students who seek information from various sources beneath their fingertips. There was a time when most families didn't have a home computer - let alone internet access. Today, that seems to be an obsolete concern with smart phones and netbooks - and more and more people of all ages accessing the internet at restuarants, coffee shops, malls, etc. Can a teacher in the real world play the role of the teacher in the video? Yes. I think it'll take some time, learning, and practice. But, it's possible. How that plays out across the grade levels - elementary, middle school, high school - becomes the bigger question.