This week’s Tech Talk is: ClassTools
ClassTools is a website that provides free flash based educational games, quizzes, and activities. You do not need to create an account to use the activities, but there is a premium account if you wish to use all of the features available. (Note: There are several ads on the site with the free version.) Unfortunately, there is not a way to save your progress so you will have to complete the activity in one class period. There are options to “Save As Webpage” or embed into a website, however.
Here are some of my ClassTools favorites (you will see all of their templates on the right hand side of their main website) –
· Fakebook – create a “fakebook” account for a literary character or historical figure
· Arcade Game Generator – quiz your students with your own custom questions
· Random Name Picker – another way to randomly choose students for questioning
· Post It – Label pictures; great for mapping or diagrams!
· Venn Diagram
If you have any questions about ClassTools, or need help integrating this into your curriculum, please let me know! Have a great day!
This week’s Tech Talk is: Thinkfinity
Thinkfinity is a site that offers free professional development and thousands of free web-based educational resources, created or reviewed by Content Partners, including lesson plans and student materials. It is a partnership between the Verizon Foundation and leading educational and literacy organizations who are often the standards setting organization for their discipline. It really is a fantastic resource!!!
When you get to the site, click on “In the Classroom” to do a search for specific lesson plans and student interactives. Here are some resources that may interest you-
· Customizable Maps
· Planet Size Comparison
· Math Concentration
Here is another great site with interactives – http://www.4kids.org/games/
Have a great week!
This week’s Tech Talk is: Screencast-o-matic
A screencast is a digital recording of a computer screen that often contains audio narration. Screencast-o-matic is a free online screen recorder that requires no installation. There are great tutorial videos on their website if you get stuck. (Start with this one.) When your video is complete, you can export it or upload it to YouTube or Screencast-o-matic.
How can you use screencasts in the classroom?
· Create video tutorials and upload them to your website/wiki/blog so students can watch them if they get stuck
· Record class activities for absent students
· Have students create screencasts and use them to check understanding/assess their work
· Create videos for a sub to use if you are going to be out
· Provide feedback on a student project with a screencast of your feedback/edits
DID YOU KNOW? Smart Notebook also has Smart Recorder! Go to Start/Smart Notebook/Smart Recorder to use it. (You must have the Smart software installed to use this tool.)
FYI – The end of the year is fast approaching!!! Are you interested in making an end of the year video for your class? PhotoStory provides a quick & easy way to create a unique video with photos that you’ve taken throughout the school year. You should have this program on your computer already, or you can download PhotoStory 3 online for free if you prefer to have it on your home computer.
This week’s Tech Talk is: Dipity
Dipity is a free digital timeline website that allows you to integrate video, audio, images, text, location and links into interactive timelines. There is not an educator version of the site, so the best way to get around this would be to create a generic username/password that your entire class can use. You can set your timelines to open or private, and you do have the ability to embed the timeline into another website if you wish. Dipity is a fast and easy way to bring history to life!
Here are some examples of what a final Dipity project looks like:
· The History of the Wheel
· Elizabeth Taylor’s Life
· Apollo Timeline
Here are some video tutorials that may help you in your Dipity adventure –
Please let me know if you have any additional questions or need help with the integration of this site!
QUICK TIP: Check out this Random Name Generator!!!