What is Cel.ly? Cel.ly creates mini social networks called cells that connect you with people and topics that matter most to you. A cell can contain anybody with a cellphone, people from your existing social networks, or any web feed. We let you define filters based on hashtags, location, time, and user identity so you can eliminate noise and get alerted only when relevant messages occur.
Group Polls: Cel.ly lets you instantly create group polls. You can setup a poll on any cell and have the members of that cell take the poll. Polls can be created on the go using your cellphone and sms text messaging or from the Celly website. I have also used PollEverywhere before, but one of the benefits I see to using Cel.ly for polls is that my students are already registered and familiar with using Cel.ly
Here are instructions on using Cel.ly for polling–> Click Here
Charts and graphs are a great tool because they communicate information visually. On ChartTool you can design and share your own graphs online and for free. They support a number of different chart types like: bar charts, pie charts, line charts, bubble charts and radar plots.
A short introduction per step:
- Design Graph. In this step you choose your Chart type. Choose for example a bar or line chart. If you made your choice you can personalize your chart with a number of different settings.
- Add Data. In this step you add the data of your graph. First choose how many items and/or groups you want to show. If you want to create a bar chart about the sale of apples in the months january till december 2007, choose 1 group (apples) and 12 items (months of the year). If you want also a show the sale of bananas during the same year, choose 2 groups.
- Labels and Fonts. In this step you determine the settings for the datalabels and you can set your font type and font size.
- Preview grafiek. If you have entered all your data and your settings you can click on ‘preview graph’ to show your chart and see if it is correct. You can always go back some steps to change your data and your settings.
- Save and Share In this step you can send your graph via email or save it as an image on your local computer. If you are registered and logged in on our site you can also save your graphs online for further editing at a later stage.
I learned about Audioboo from the Engaging Educators Blog. Audioboo is a simple website that allows users to record free of charge online. Students can even download the app to their Droid or iphone to turn their smartphones into a recording device. Audioboo seems very easy to use in the classroom. It could be used with storytelling, interviews, radio shows, foreign langage assessments, and personal messages for families. The ideas are endless!
How it works?
Students can record any audio and its turned into a podcast also called a “boo” You can share the podcast on a social networking website or email it to a friend. You can also play it directly from the web or embed it into your blog.
I learned about WebNotes from one of my AP Government seniors who was researching a project about federal mandates. I wish I had WebNotes in college it would have made my life so much easier. I am sharing this resource with my entire class when we start the next project. Check it out today!
Benefits of Using WebNotes
- WebNotes makes it easy to highlight and add notes to web pages from directly within your web browser. Notes are saved automatically and will reappear any time you visit the page.
- Zoom in and out, search for text, and use WebNotes’ highlighting, commenting, and note-taking tools with our ultra-high quality online PDF viewer.
- Organize your notes, bookmarks, and documents into folders, or tag them for easy reference. Search through your notes to find information instantly. WebNotes can be accessed from anywhere — either through our browser plug-in, or the WebNotes web site.
- Highlighted web pages and PDFs can be shared with others through email, permalink, or Twitter. Recipients will see your notes without having to download software or register for WebNotes.
- Share your notes and clippings with clients and colleagues by generating beautiful reports with WebNotes. Simply select one or more folders, choose a report template, and use our rich-text editor to make final changes. Then send your report by email, or export it to a PDF or HTML document.
Quizlet is the largest flash cards and study games website with over 6 million free sets of flashcards covering every possible subject. It’s the best place to play educational games, memorize vocabulary and study online.
Make or Find Flashcards
Create flashcard sets with your own terms and definitions
- Or choose from millions of flashcard sets created by other users
Use Powerful Study Tools
- Flashcard Mode lets you familiarize yourself with the material.
- Learn Mode is the most powerful study mode, keeping track of your scores, and retesting incorrect answers.
- Test Mode generates customizable tests with short-answer, matching, multiple choice and true/false options.
Share & Study with Your Friends
- Create a group to share or discuss flashcards with your friends or classmates.
- Edit and improve sets created by other group members.
Play Competitive Study Games
- Scatter is a fun matching game which lets you drag and drop questions and answers with your mouse while racing against the clock.
- Space Race is the ultimate video game study simulation. Racing the clock, you type in answers to questions flying overhead before they evade your grasp.
Study on the Go
- Never leave home without Quizlet!
- Choose from dozens of mobile apps on iPhone, Android, Palm, etc.
This week I tried my first back-channel with my AP class. I was impressed with the level of participation and discussion while we watched the video. What shocked me the most was that students asked and answered questions during the video. I posed a general question to the class that elicited responses but many students made comments about the video and even asked the class questions. We used Edmodo as the platform, which worked well. I was thinking of researching some other back-channeling options. Today’s Meet is blocked at my school so that option is out.
I recently discovered a back channeling option called Neat Chat. Neat Chat is the easiest and fastest way to have an online conversation with a group of friends or colleagues. The process of starting a chat session and inviting people is dead easy! Neat Chat provides you a clean, fast, and robust chat room.
I learned about Page Flip-Flap from Make Use Of.com Flipbooks, where you can flip the page instead of scrolling down, is quite the trend nowadays. PageFlipFlap lets you use this sleek format by helping you convert any Word orPDF document and even images into a flip book. All you have to do is upload the documents or images and provide an email address when you want to receive the link to your flip book.
Once the flipbook is created, you will receive an email with a unique URL. You can use that to view your flip book and share it with the world, for example on Facebook and Twitter. You can search your flipbook, zoom in and out, download it as a PDF and even email it to friends. The display can be customized by switching to a full screen view or a thumbnail view. The interface is cluttered with advertisements but the functionality is nevertheless quite awesome. Great resource for articles and interesting documents you want to flip.
September 11, 2001 was a defining moment in American history. It is so interesting that many of the children who were 8, 9, or 10 years old when the World Trade Center towers fell and the Pentagon burned are now in college. For many of our students they were just “babies” and remember bits and pieces. I am a strong advocate of teaching 9/11 every year and this year is no different being it’s the 10th anniversary of September 11th.
Like most of you, I can remember where I was on 9/11 and how I felt. I was sitting in my US government class in high school. I remember the silence of the halls. I remember my friends getting called out of class to go home because their family members were unaccounted for. This new generation of students are used to filtered news; many watched live television reports of the attacks in their living rooms and classrooms. I remember the overwhelming sense of pride and love for our nation. I wore red, white, and blue and felt an urgency to plant a tree in honor of the victims of 9/11. These feelings will never leave me.
I discovered a wonderful resource called The Internet Archive from Richard Bryne’s blog Free Technology 4 Teachers. I learned about this blog post from Richard’s blog post called Understanding 9/11: A Television News Archive. Richard says the “Internet Archive has assembled more than 3,000 hours of news footage from September 11, 2001 and the six days immediately following. You can explore the footage in a timeline grid format.”
I agree with Richard in that I just spent 20 minutes watching the footage from 9/11 and it took me back to the emotions I had on 9/11. I think this is one of the best resources I found (thanks to Richard) for teaching about 9/11.
Here is a link to a previous post about 9/11 lesson plans
Here is a link to a previous post about teaching post 9/11
Here is another link to Great resources from Larry Ferlazzo’s Website’s of the Day entitled “The Best Resources for Teaching about 9/11″
Here is a 100 Plus Google Tricks written by Amber Johnson from Teach Hub. Amber said that “From super-effective search tricks to Google tools specifically for education to tricks and tips for using Gmail, Google Docs, and Google Calendar, these tricks will surely save you some precious time.” Check it out today!
I could not agree more with the Edutopia article written by Sara Ring called Google for Educators: The Best Features for Busy Teachers. Sara said that “Google has made it easier by creating Google for Educators, which compiles some of the search engine’s most useful features in one place. Whether you’re teaching Spanish or social studies, mathematics or music, there’s a free Google feature that will make your lessons more dynamic and your projects more organized. The lively, informative Web site offers step-by-step visual tours and even videos to help you get set up.”
Below are some of the most useful features the Gooogle has to offer:
Many of us have used Google Maps to find driving directions, but its usefulness goes way beyond getting from point A to point B. Before a field trip, your students can study the area they will visit through a variety of maps, including street, terrain, and satellite views. Then document your trip by creating personalized maps that include your route, as well as fact balloons, photos, and even videos.
Melissa Browning, a third-grade teacher at Brooklyn’s PS 8, had her students use Google Maps for their unit on mapping. “We used Google to locate our own street addresses and find different locations in the United States and in the world,” Browning explains. “My students love using the computers; it makes learning a lot more interactive.” She also used Google Earth in this unit, and she had students search onGoogle Image Search for photos of the animals they were studying. “I love using this technology in the classroom,” Browning says. “It makes it easier for teachers to have this information at their fingertips. It’s all there for us.”
Google Docs is particularly handy for teachers when revising students’ work. It allows you and your class to track what changes have been made, save each revision, and collaborate in real time. And it’s a great organizing tool: You can easily upload old documents in other applications to Google Docs so all your files are accessible in one place. Not only can your students create electronic documents and spreadsheets, they can also instantly access and edit each other’s essays, post their work to a blog, publish it as a Web page, and create eye-catching presentations — all within the same program.
Blogger allows you to create your own blog that contains important information about your class, assignments, and upcoming tests. It requires no HTML, and you can easily update and edit it from anywhere. Your students can create their own blogs to display writing and photos and to share information with each other. And you can set all blogs to “private” so only those users you approve may access them.
Google Book Search
Google Book Search, the electronic equivalent of browsing through a library, is a great way to find new books for your class to read or for your students to use as research tools. You can browse through specific categories, type in keywords, or search for particular titles. Each result includes the information you’d find about that book in a card catalog, plus a table of contents, links to book reviews and related works, and other resources. For instance, in the results for Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, you’ll find links to scholarly works about the novel.
For copyrighted books, the results may provide a few sample pages, but for books in the public domain, you may be able to read the entire work online. If you want to keep track of your searches, you can create an online library of books by clicking “Add to my library” for any book you’d like to include. You can review, rate, and do a full-text search on the books in your library, and you can share the link with others.
Google Book Search also lets you buy any book online or search for it at the nearest library.
That’s only a sampling of the features Google for Educators offers. So, try out a feature that’s new to you or use a familiar tool in a new way to see how Google can make your lessons more effective and more convenient.
I love finding articles like this article from eSchool News entitled Ten Common Myths about Teaching. eSchool News recently asked readers: “If you could clear up one misconception about teachers and/or teaching, what would it be?” Our goal was not only to help others understand these misconceptions, but also to learn how teachers feel they are perceived by others.
Here are 10 misconceptions about teachers and teaching that emerged from readers according to eSchool News:
1. Those who can’t do, teach.
Response: Teachers must be well educated in their field of study, of course, but that is only the beginning. Teachers need much pedagogical preparation on topics including educational psychology, classroom management, assessment, curriculum instruction, communication skills, and budgeting.
2. A teacher’s day ends at 3 p.m.
Response: The good teachers I know work before school starts and long after the students go home, and work all summer, too—taking classes and attending workshops to become a better teacher; working on developing activities, units, and lessons to help students learn better; and learning new skills to integrate technology into their classrooms.
3. Teachers get their summers off
Response: We spend them doing professional development and planning for the coming year—even more so if you are changing grade level or subject for the coming year.
4. If teachers are good at what they do, student grades and test scores will be good, too.
Response: The best teachers among us can never be identified by the performance of their students on tests. We should seek to find those teachers who instill in students a belief that they can and will be successful when they are confronted with challenges
5. Teaching is easy, and anyone can do it.
Response: We teachers must complete professional development and continuing education in order to maintain our licenses. Not only must we master pedagogical theory, but we also must put it into practice daily.
6. Teachers are solely responsible for learning.
Response: Parents need to play an active role [by] following up at home with study skills, health, nutrition, and reducing time spent watching TV and playing games!
7. If you went to school, you know what teaching is.
Response: We have policies and procedures made by people every day without any input from educational professionals, which just don’t make sense
8. Teachers are well-compensated for what they do.
Response: People do not realize that many hours of preparation are required, not only to do our jobs but also to do them well. In fact, those hours take place [on] weekdays, weekends, and even during vacations.
9. Teachers aren’t as good as they used to be.
Response: We still have young teachers eager to work and who will give their all. My great worry is that because of the cutbacks in state and federal budgets, many of these teachers don’t have the opportunity to even begin their careers.
10. Teachers are all the same.
That a statement about one teacher (or a select group of teachers) is a statement about all teachers.”
Check out the article for more information.
Channel is web based software to surf the web together, add notes, and chat on the same webpage in real-time. Channel Me is an easy and useful way to share a website with another person. It is a web-based software that allows you to surf the web, write notes, and chat in REAL time. I can see this site being really useful when teaching someone about a new product or program. Check it out today!
Teaching AP Government, I try my best to stay up to date on the lastest current events. I find it very challneging looking at a number of websites, google reader, blogs, and favorite links. I just discovered Google Fast Flip, which solves all of my problems. Google Fast Flip is a web application that lets users discover and share news articles. It combines qualities of print and the Web, with the ability to “flip” through pages online as quickly as flipping through a magazine. It also enables users to follow friends and topics, discover new content and create their own custom magazines around searches
How does it work?
We capture images of the articles on our partners’ websites and then display them in an easy-to-read way. The stories are grouped by categories, such as Entertainment, Business, Opinion, Politics and Most Viewed. Readers can flip through stories quickly by simply pressing the left- and right-arrow keys until they find one that catches their interest. Clicking on the story takes them directly to the publisher’s website.
How are the Topics selected? Can I choose my own?
The Topics are generated automatically by rising stories in the news. Users can also search for any subjects they want and basically create their own topics, almost like a custom magazine, on the fly.
I learned about Soshiku from Technology Tidbits. Soshiku is a simple but powerful tool that manages your high school or college assignments. Soshiku keeps track of when your assignments are due and can even notify you via email or SMS. And it’s totally free. I wish I had this program when I was in college. It would have been extremely helpful.
I am looking for interesting ways to bring technology into my classroom. One of my goals this year is to incorporate back-channeling into my classroom. This year I am going to try back-channeling using Edmodo while my class is watching a video. I think students will be excited to share their information. I plan on posing a series of questions on Edmodo and having students reply to the questions and other students comments. I just read a Great post from Richard Bryne at Free Technology for Teachers about Back-Channeling. He created the following slideshare post about back-channeling in the classroom.
Here is another Post called five platforms for classroom back-channels from Richard Bryne at Free Technology for Teachers. Richard Posts mentioned 5 platforms. He posts:
“Chatzy is a neat little website that I learned about from Wes Fryer. Chatzy provides a free platform for hosting your private chat area. To use it, simply name your chat area, select your privacy settings (you can password protect it), then send out invitations. Instead of sending out invitations you could just post the link to your chat area.”
TodaysMeet is completely free to use. Setting up a chat area in TodaysMeet is very simple. To set up your chat area just select a name for your room (that name becomes the url for your chat area), how long you want your room to exist, and select an optional Twitter hashtag for your chat area.
Edmodo is a microblogging service designed specifically for educational use. Using Edmodo teachers can create a microblogging network for their classes. The latest version of Edmodo updates in real-time so that members of group can quickly respond to each other. Edmodo also provides teachers with a place to post assignment reminders, build an event calendar, and post messages to the group.
Present.ly provides a platform for creating your own private micro-blogging community. The free version of Present.ly lets you create a community based on your email domain. For example, if I had other people using freetech4teachers.com as their email domain, I could establish a Present.ly community just for people with that email domain.
Although it could be difficult to get enough invites for all of your students to use it now, in the futureGoogle Wave could be a great platform for back-channel discussions. Google Wave allows users to thread conversations, invite people into a conversation at any point, and see the text that others are typing as they’re typing it. Wave also allows you to post links, embed maps, and a myriad of gadgets. Watch the video below for a concise introduction toGoogle Wave.