TeachersFirst Edge - Collaboration

 

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Sembly - Sembly

Grades
6 to 12
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Sembly is an online classroom management tool. Sign up as a teacher or student to begin. The teacher version allows you to create and add classes. After adding students, they ...more
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Sembly is an online classroom management tool. Sign up as a teacher or student to begin. The teacher version allows you to create and add classes. After adding students, they receive a class code allowing them to enter the class. Create assignments with deadlines for students from your dashboard. The assignment option also provides the opportunity for collaboration and interaction between students and teachers. Upload files from your computer, Google Drive, DropBox, and Evernote to add to assignments or share with your class. Sembly is available online and for mobile devices with apps available for all operating systems.

tag(s): classroom management (134), DAT device agnostic tool (196), organizational skills (122)

In the Classroom

Use Sembly to manage and organize any classroom. Maintain a classroom calendar so students can easily find due dates and deadlines for homework and projects. Reminder notices will be automatically generated. Share information with parents to keep them up to date. Use the discussion feature as a resource for keeping students involved over long holidays or on a snow day. Sembly is an interactive and collaborative program. Challenge literature circles to complete write ups, discussions, and final presentations about the book they read using Sembly. Lab partners can present their findings, and math students can demonstrate how they solved a problem.

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Workflowy - Jesse Patel & Mike Turitzin

Grades
4 to 12
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Organize your brain and your life with Workflowy. This tool allows you to take notes, make lists and outlines, and use hashtags to create groups of items. Import lists from ...more
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Organize your brain and your life with Workflowy. This tool allows you to take notes, make lists and outlines, and use hashtags to create groups of items. Import lists from other documents directly into Workflowy. Share lists with others using the share button, use options to allow them to edit if desired. Quickly create an account using email and a password to begin. Once you create an account, be sure to take advantage of the many tutorial videos demonstrating Workflowy's features. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): calendars (44), DAT device agnostic tool (196), organizational skills (122)

In the Classroom

Any student would appreciate having an online time management account, but learning support students and disorganized gifted students need one. You may want to model using Workflowy to help middle and high school students learn better personal organization. Make a demo account for a mythical student and organize his/her Workflowy together so students can see how it works. Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector the first week of school to help students set up their own accounts. Parents may also appreciate learning about this site. Use this site professionally to keep yourself organized!

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Genius - Genius Media Group Inc

Grades
8 to 12
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Genius allows you to "Annotate the World." Begin with the music portion of the site to view lyrics and crowdsourced knowledge for thousands of songs. In addition to music, Genius ...more
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Genius allows you to "Annotate the World." Begin with the music portion of the site to view lyrics and crowdsourced knowledge for thousands of songs. In addition to music, Genius also offers annotations for literature, news, sports, TV shows, and movies. Search any section to find specific content or browse through the latest offerings. Install the Chrome extension to use Genius's Web Annotator and add your own notes to any web page or put genius.it in front of any URL to annotate and read other user's notes on any web page. If your district blocks YouTube, some portions may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube. Important: Content is not moderated, be sure to PREVIEW and check for inappropriate content before using with students.

tag(s): bookmarks (60), citations (34), note taking (32)

In the Classroom

After creating an account, type Teacher's Guide in the search box to find the link for a very complete guide. The guide has information for using Genius in the classroom and creating accounts. Use the information found with literature selections to build Common Core skills analyzing informational texts. Use the site to post and share discussion assignments on specific articles or even parts of articles. Find a relevant article to your subject. Highlight the part that you want students to read. For younger students, keep it short to reduce the intimidating reality of too much information for kids. Attach a note with a discussion question for the students. Have them comment on the link in a "class discussion" as an outside assignment.

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Global Virtual Classroom - AT&T and Give Something Back International Foundation

Grades
1 to 12
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Join the Global Virtual Classroom (GVC) and bring students from other regions and countries into your classroom - virtually! Global Virtual Classroom has been around for a long time...more
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Join the Global Virtual Classroom (GVC) and bring students from other regions and countries into your classroom - virtually! Global Virtual Classroom has been around for a long time and has learned what is needed to create global citizens. They've done everything for you from Lessons, Resources, and a Web Design Contest, to directions for becoming part of the community, providing a list of other educators who would like to participate, and a Clubhouse for your students. Be sure to register by mid September each year!

tag(s): competitions (16), cross cultural understanding (115), cultures (105), wikis (19)

In the Classroom

Take students to another place, encourage them to understand other cultures and create global citizens by signing up to join GVC. After introducing GVC on an interactive whiteboard or projector, create a quick poll (with no membership required) using SurveyRock, reviewed here, to vote for which country or region to communicate with and share information. Begin a blog for each student to share reflections. Consider asking the partner teacher to have their students blog, too, and encourage students to respond to each others' blogs. Students' writing improves when they have an authentic audience. Haven't started blogging yet? Check out TeachersFirst's Blog Basics.

Another idea would be to use a projector and Lino, reviewed here, (no membership required) to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge about the culture with whom students will be working. Lino creates virtual sticky notes on a bulletin board. Once the project is underway, go back to Lino occasionally, and add what they learned and whether it coincides with the students' original ideas. Before culminating the project, ask the partner class if they will fill in the areas and ideas missed on your Lino. Consider starting a lunch time or after school club for students to have more time to participate in the Clubhouse.

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Comments4Kids - William Chamberlain

Grades
6 to 12
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We all know that having an audience for our writing makes us better writers. Comments4Kids provides that audience. There are four rules for commenting on others' blogs: be relevant,...more
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We all know that having an audience for our writing makes us better writers. Comments4Kids provides that audience. There are four rules for commenting on others' blogs: be relevant, be positive, comment only when you have something to say, and always use good conventions (grammar, spelling, punctuation). Explore 5 Smart Ways to get Comments4Kids on your blog, read the Rule of Return, and learn how one teacher manages his students' comments on others' blogs. Back on the main page, click the link to see how another teacher manages blogs and also testimonials from several different professionals about why creating an audience for writing is necessary. Then, start by adding your class blog or your blog to the registration area. Consider Tweeting the blog address under the comments4kids hashtag when you want your students to have a commenting audience. On Twitter, type in #comments4kids, to see the current activity.

tag(s): blogs (88), writing (358)

In the Classroom

If your students blog, you may want to consider using Comments4Kids to encourage them to do their best writing, proofread, and learn how to tactfully and meaningfully comment on others' writing. You might want to consider using the hashtag #comments4kids in your Tweets. Read the 5 Smart Ways To Get Comments4Kids page to learn more. If you are interested in blogging but never have, you might want to check out TeachersFirst's Blog Basics For the Classroom. You also may want to use prompts from Thought Questions, reviewed here, as an easy way to get kids writing blogs. There are many other ideas for your students to blog about such as having science students display photos and information about lab work or research findings of a famous scientist. Language arts students can write about the main character in a book. Have literature circle groups create one blog to present the book and its different characters. Create blogs for current events, biographies, or explanations about curriculum topics such as plants.

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Typewrite - Josh C.

Grades
5 to 12
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Typewrite.io is a collaborative writing tool that is in real-time so multiple editors can be working on the same document at the same time. It is distraction free, and you ...more
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Typewrite.io is a collaborative writing tool that is in real-time so multiple editors can be working on the same document at the same time. It is distraction free, and you can save versions and revert to previous versions. When viewing versions, changes will be highlighted. Sign up using email and get started right away. There is no waiting for approval. Share documents via email to have them edited.

tag(s): editing (60), proofreading (19), writing (358)

In the Classroom

Have your students set up collaborative groups for projects, lab data, and more. Anything students can do on a single computer; they can do collaboratively with this tool, accessing their work from any online computer. Be sure to test out this tool before using with your class. It may be a good idea to set up the groups with the teacher as a "member." Make sure you are protecting the safety of student work and identity and are within your school's Acceptable Use Policy.

This tool facilitates teacher comments on student essays by not having to wait until students turn in their papers. Have them share links with you to their works in progress. Check essays online, monitor progress, and even make suggestions for revisions to provide feedback along the way and drive successful evidence support, proofreading, and editing skills. Challenge gifted students on their drafts and push their thinking further, adding questions or responses. Since most of us do not have time to provide such individual challenge throughout the writing process, why not connect them with other gifted students to collaborate and debate beyond just your classroom? Obviously, this tool is also fabulous for collaboration among students or teachers creating a shared writing piece at any level. You could even use it for parent input into draft IEPs.

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Blab (Beta) - Shaan Puri & Furqan Rydhan

Grades
9 to 12
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Watch live conversations or create your own discussions with Blab. Sign in with your Twitter account to start your own Blab on Firefox or Chrome browsers. Click "Start a New ...more
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Watch live conversations or create your own discussions with Blab. Sign in with your Twitter account to start your own Blab on Firefox or Chrome browsers. Click "Start a New Blab" and send the URL for others to join you. Use the settings to record your Blab if desired. To get ideas for how Blab works, view Blabs created by other users by scrolling through the home page or use the search bar to find specific topics. Two to four people can participate in a Blab, and others can call in with comments and questions. Blabs shared on the site are not moderated, so use caution before sharing with students.

tag(s): chat (51), social media (16), video (253)

In the Classroom

Connect whole classrooms across the country for book clubs. Create connected learning experiences with other students, especially those in older grades. Connect world language classes to other countries. Students interested in graphic design can connect with an expert or artist far away and share current work in a virtual critique. Connect students with mentors or older students for help with homework. Students working together for a presentation or literature circles can practice, discuss, and communicate easily. Teachers can hold "office hours" for homework help and asking questions. Whole buildings can collaborate and share professional development with others in their own district and beyond!

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Dotstorming - Gareth Marland

Grades
2 to 12
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Create an online bulletin board (much like Padlet, reviewed here, or Lino, reviewed here) for brainstorming and...more
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Create an online bulletin board (much like Padlet, reviewed here, or Lino, reviewed here) for brainstorming and VOTING on any topic. The voting is what makes this tool different. Create an account. There is no waiting for email approval. Add a board, title, select how many votes the participants will have (up to 10), and start adding posts with text, images, and video. Add images and video via URL or upload from your computer. When participants join, they give their name. Participants can add posts. Names of participants using the board appear below the chat box. Participants name's appear when they make a comment in the chat. However, comments on posts don't have the participant name. Once the board is complete, the creator can finalize the board so no new ideas can be posted, but the voting feature is still open.

tag(s): bulletin boards (16), gamification (65), images (265)

In the Classroom

Share your board with a projector or interactive whiteboard. Put the URL link on your website for students to access. If you don't want to share the link that way, then use a tool such as Google URL Shortener, reviewed here, for students to type in (and reduce input mistakes). You may want to think about students using only their first name or their code to participate. Dotstorming does not show which posts belong to which student, so you may want to require that students identify their post and comment by putting their initials, their first name, or their code on their contributions to get credit. If you plan to allow all students to post to the wall or make comments, you may want to discuss Internet safety and etiquette and establish specific class rules and consequences.

Use Dotstorming to collect WebQuest links and information to share with students. Assign a student project. For example, have students create a board about an environmental issue. They can include pictures, video, links, and other information to display. Use as a new format for book reports. Do your students have favorites such as music or sports? Create a board around these favorites or hobbies. Use a wall for grammar or vocabulary words. Create walls for debates or viewpoints. The voting is perfect for that idea! Post assignments, reminders, or study skills on a board. Do you use student scribes or reporters? Use Dotstorming to create a board with class news and updates.

Use Dotstorming as an "idea bin" where students can collect ideas, images, quotes, and more for a project. Require them to share a brainstorming Dotstorming board to show you the ideas they considered before they launch into a project. Have them brainstorm (and rank by votes) the possibilities for a creative problem solving or a "Maker Faire" project. In writing or art classes, use Dotstorming as a virtual writer's journal or design notebook to collect ideas, images, and even video clips.

Use Dotstorming as your virtual word wall for vocabulary development. Have students submit and share questions or comments about assignments and tasks they are working on.

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SRecorder - SRecorder Company

Grades
K to 12
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Record a PC desktop with or without sound using free software from SRecorder. This software works only with Windows Operating Systems. After downloading and installing the software,...more
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Record a PC desktop with or without sound using free software from SRecorder. This software works only with Windows Operating Systems. After downloading and installing the software, use the desktop shortcut to begin the recording. Choose to view the entire desktop or select a specific area using the crop box provided. Click the red button to record, then use the icons on the screen to save to your computer or share to social networking sites.

tag(s): video (253)

In the Classroom

Use SRecorder to record instructions for using websites. Share how to perform problems, step by step directions for any project, and much more. Leave a video message for your substitute teacher or even your class! Create a video message to share with parents about current projects, clips from field trips, and more. Share on your class website for students to view at home.

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TPS Teachers Network - Metropolitan State University of Denver

Grades
K to 12
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TPS Teachers Network is a social networking site for social studies and history teachers. The Library of Congress funded this as part of their Teaching With Primary Sources Program....more
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TPS Teachers Network is a social networking site for social studies and history teachers. The Library of Congress funded this as part of their Teaching With Primary Sources Program. Create an account to begin using features on the site (email and password required). Once enrolled, options include participating in a chat, adding friends, and searching using keywords. Use the tag cloud on the main page to find specific information by grade level or topics such as primary source sets. Create albums on the site, including primary and secondary sources, to easily share with students or fellow teachers. Be sure to check out the Help section at the bottom of the page when you first get started for Quick Tip Tutorials to make the most of the site. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): bookmarks (60), primary sources (86), professional development (123), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save TPS Teachers Network as an excellent professional development and social networking site. Share with your colleagues to create your own professional learning network on the site. Create albums with primary sources for use throughout the year in one easy to find location.

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GoConqr - ExamTime Ltd

Grades
6 to 12
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GoConqr (formerly ExamTime) is a crowdsourcing site for uploading and sharing class notes, flashcards, quizzes, and more. Free membership offers you access to 3 subjects and 20 public...more
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GoConqr (formerly ExamTime) is a crowdsourcing site for uploading and sharing class notes, flashcards, quizzes, and more. Free membership offers you access to 3 subjects and 20 public resources. Sign up using your email account to begin using GoConqr's features. Be sure to watch the video tutorials for creating resources for your personal page. Use the search feature to find and access resources already designed and shared on the site. If your district blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): classroom management (134), flash cards (46), homework (44), mind map (25), quizzes (97), social networking (112), test prep (96)

In the Classroom

Share GoConqr with students to build and use study skills. Although an individual can use the site on their own, it is best to use it as a sharing site for study information. Encourage students to sign up and build a network of friends for creating and sharing resources. Learning support teachers and teachers of gifted-but-disorganized students will want to share the tools and encourage their students to create groups and collaborate with their peers. Have students create review activities and swap them with peers. Use this tool with colleagues to co-create materials to use with content units or materials to use for flipping the classroom. Use this tool for professional development.

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Free Conference Call - freeconferencecall.com

Grades
K to 12
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Conduct virtual conferences with up to 25 people at one time with Free Conference Call. Instantly share your screen during online calls for participant viewing. Other features allow...more
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Conduct virtual conferences with up to 25 people at one time with Free Conference Call. Instantly share your screen during online calls for participant viewing. Other features allow for recording and sharing meetings when finished. After creating an account, follow instructions for inviting participants and setting up the conference call.

tag(s): chat (51), DAT device agnostic tool (196), parent conferences (22), parents (56)

In the Classroom

Use Free Conference Call to set up virtual parent/teacher conferences with participants located anywhere in the world. This is especially useful when multiple teachers are involved or when parents may not reside in the same location. Share your screen as needed to provide information on assessments and student work.

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Deekit - Asko Tamm, Erki Eskin, Kaili Kleemeier, & Kristo Magi

Grades
K to 12
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Deekit is an online collaborative whiteboard tool for use with any device. Sign-in using social networking accounts such as Google or Facebook to begin. Import images, draw, type, and...more
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Deekit is an online collaborative whiteboard tool for use with any device. Sign-in using social networking accounts such as Google or Facebook to begin. Import images, draw, type, and zoom in on content using the site's tools. Click the arrow next to the Current board to send an email to invite others to collaborate. Deekit also includes a small library of templates for import into your whiteboard. Watch Deekit's tutorial by clicking on YouTube at the bottom right of any page. View the tutorial to see how to use this site and take advantage of the tools included. If your district blocks YouTube, the video may not be viewable. You could always view the video at home and bring it to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (196), drawing (78), iwb (31)

In the Classroom

Deekit is an excellent tool to use for impromptu peer tutoring sessions or hosting online brainstorming sessions. Students can also use it on 1:1 or BYOD devices during class to collaborate on diagrams, brainstorms, or mind maps. This tool is perfect for snow days and school breaks. Use as a place to collect webquest links and information. Solicit input, discussions, or viewpoints from students. Use as a new format for book reports. Use for students to illustrate their personal definitions for vocabulary words. Need an open space for debates or viewpoints? Post assignments, reminders, or study skills. Do you use student scribes or reporters? Use this tool for them to record information from the class that you can share via a link on your class web page to review class explanations when completing homework, for absent students, and more.

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Simply Circle - Elena Krasnoperova

Grades
K to 12
2 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Simply Circle makes communicating with groups easy and productive. Create your account to send messages, share files or images, or set up events and tasks to members of your Circles....more
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Simply Circle makes communicating with groups easy and productive. Create your account to send messages, share files or images, or set up events and tasks to members of your Circles. Use links in your events to request volunteers, ask participants to bring items, or request RSVP's. Create Circles by adding email addresses; members of your circle do not need to be a member of Simply Circle to view the emails. Add additional Circle managers if desired to allow others to send information to your group.

tag(s): classroom management (134), DAT device agnostic tool (196), preK (279)

In the Classroom

Set up Circles for all of your different classroom and professional needs. Use this tool to find and sign up classroom volunteers, plan supplies for parties and events, and send parent/teacher conference reminders. Share with your school's parent/teacher organization as an excellent communication and scheduling tool. Keep research groups and literature circles organized. Create a circle for each group, send the code, via email. When sending the code to join use the manager section of the page to make them managers of the group. Students can then post files, images, schedule dates for you and the other group members. Students will not be able to see or add to other groups you have formed.

Comments

Great collaboration tool Shirley, CA, Grades: 6 - 12

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The Wonderment - Kidnected World

Grades
3 to 9
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Enjoy and challenge creativity and problem-solving skills in a world of wonder. Once you sign up for Wonderment, a social platform for kids, choose a bot or secret identity. Given ...more
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Enjoy and challenge creativity and problem-solving skills in a world of wonder. Once you sign up for Wonderment, a social platform for kids, choose a bot or secret identity. Given a choice to follow many different paths, kids determine the subject of interest. The paths are real-world problems from around the globe. View a video, story, or idea. Design a response using text, photos, or a video. Join a chat to allow comments or ask questions to make global connections. After each posting, special points are added to make the bot design more elaborate. A personal Wondermeter rises with each response. Through donations, this non-profit brings technology to children around the world. A call for adults to serve as mentors to respond to each child challenges adults to join in the fun and make the world a better place. Register with email. Children under 13 need parent or teacher approval to participate. Watch the two short videos to see an explanation for The Wonderment and How It Works.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (115), enrichment (13), gifted (96), listening (91), problem solving (272), social media (16), social networking (112), social skills (20), speaking (24)

In the Classroom

Wonderment is a problem based learning adventure for each student around the world to communicate and collaborate with other students. This venue allows great lesson ideas for digital citizenship and digital footprints. Begin by choosing a path for the entire class and feature on an interactive whiteboard. Have students work in small groups to choose their best response. Discussions after can focus on creativity, problem solving, and collaboration between the group and others from around the world. In a gifted class, use as a way to challenge kids to break through the "right answer" and find the "best answer." Use this as a model for finding authentic needs in your community. Be sure to share a link to this tool on your class blog, website, or Edmodo account. Use this tool as the answer for the parents who always want more challenge and enrichment for their students at home. Be sure to share at a staff meeting to spread the wonder for other students and adults.

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Apricot - Just Apricot

Grades
2 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Apricot is not your average prompt generator. Use Apricot to have parents become collaborators in their child's education. With an Apricot account, create an online classroom or multiple...more
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Apricot is not your average prompt generator. Use Apricot to have parents become collaborators in their child's education. With an Apricot account, create an online classroom or multiple classrooms within the same account. Invite students to join using a code provided by Apricot for each class. Moreover, if you choose, invite parents to join and read their student's responses to the prompts you create. Send parents email alerts for only the response(s) you wish to share. Find an introduction Vimeo video on their blog (a link at the bottom of the landing page). This works on any browser based computer and on iPads. At the time of this review the site was planning to add an option to write a personal note to the parents when sending the prompt.

tag(s): parents (56), writing (358), writing prompts (92)

In the Classroom

What a great tool to get your students writing daily! Not only language arts teachers will benefit from using this tool. Any subject teacher can create prompts about the topics their students study. Use Apricot as an exit ticket to see where students have misconceptions about the lesson presented. For days when you need some help coming up with a prompt, look at Thought Questions, reviewed here, to get a few ideas. Send responses to parents easily by having them sign up for the code. Parents will not automatically get responses. You can select which responses to send them.

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ProjectWriter - BoomWriter

Grades
2 to 8
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Develop and manage group writing projects with ProjectWriter. Created by BoomWriter, reviewed here, this site specifically provides support for expository...more
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Develop and manage group writing projects with ProjectWriter. Created by BoomWriter, reviewed here, this site specifically provides support for expository writing across any content area including built-in vocabulary tools. Begin by creating a project and breaking content into smaller, manageable sections. Enter assignments stating requirements such as word count, due dates, and more. Receive submissions in real time as students submit work for your review. After receiving all submissions allow students to review anonymous submissions and vote for the best entry.
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tag(s): digital storytelling (142), essays (21), expository writing (44), interactive stories (32), vocabulary (324), vocabulary development (126), writing (358)

In the Classroom

ProjectWriter is perfect for use when incorporating Common Core Writing Standards into any content area. Encourage students to read other students' writing for ideas about what makes informational writing interesting. Create a friendly competition within your grade level by starting a project and choosing a winner. Create new projects throughout the school year for any and all subjects.

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Corkboard - Corkboard LLC

Grades
1 to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Tack up a digital corkboard and remember all of your lists, items to do, recipes, decorating, or share comments with others. This site offers a digital version of the corkboard ...more
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Tack up a digital corkboard and remember all of your lists, items to do, recipes, decorating, or share comments with others. This site offers a digital version of the corkboard from the "old days." Fill it with whatever you want! Even better than the traditional corkboard, you can create as many different digital corkboards as you want. Create the name, tags, and double click to add to your new corkboard. Keep it private or share with co-workers or friends. Go online to access, or use an iPhone app. Click on Corkboard Mobile to use with other mobile devices. Add the Corkboard bookmarklet to take a screen shot of a web page and save it.

tag(s): brainstorming (23), note taking (32)

In the Classroom

Think big and small when you use Corkboard! Use a Corkboard to communicate with each of your students' families. Add simple reminders, lists of spelling or vocabulary words, homework assignments, project directions, field trip dates, after school club dates, or general parent tips. Share the cork board(s) with all parents. There is also an easy way parents can go back and reference earlier Corkboards. When planning an event or field trip, make your list on Corkboard and let parents easily make their choice. Updates are immediate. Use this tool for brainstorming on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Post the link for the Corkboard and allow students to continue the brainstorm from home. Encourage collaboration between group members in a snap. Set up your parent conference schedule easily! Bring a bit of technology into language arts with class reflections, or even individual reflections. Have students create study guides together from home or even at centers. Reinforce concepts from any subject as a study guide. This tool makes it easy to conduct an author's chair. Document steps of a problem-based learning experience together. Watch current events come alive. No longer are you limited by wall space, digital corkboards are limitless!

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Bloomz - Chaks Appalabattula

Grades
K to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Bloomz is a tool that has more than six free features that teachers need to communicate with their classroom community: share photos, schedule conferences, send reminders, and more....more
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Bloomz is a tool that has more than six free features that teachers need to communicate with their classroom community: share photos, schedule conferences, send reminders, and more. These features are all in one place. So don't use one program to share photos, one to send reminders, one to share calendar updates, and another to schedule volunteers and conferences. Just use Bloomz and do all of the work from the same site. Once you have signed up with your email, watch the introduction video and view the demo class to see how easy Bloomz is to use. This tool works with all mobile devices and computers.

tag(s): calendars (44), DAT device agnostic tool (196), images (265), parent conferences (22), parents (56)

In the Classroom

Use Bloomz for all your communications with your classroom community. Not only that, but share important documents (field trip permission slips, a syllabus, etc.) for others to access. Post photos of special projects in class or from field trips. P.E. teachers and coaches can use this tool to post what skills students are learning and action pictures of student involvement in games and activities. Parents can download the free app or receive updates via email. Currently, there are three ways to invite parents and other class members. Email, enter the information manually, or upload an Excel spreadsheet and send a bulk invitation. Create groups within your Bloomz class and invite members. These groups might be volunteers in the classroom, volunteers for driving on a field trip, and more. Then you can communicate just to that group when necessary. Introduce Bloomz to parents at Back to School Night in the fall, Open House in the spring, or during parent conferences. Encourage resource teachers and others to join your class community to see what your class is doing. Update Bloomz on the go with your mobile device!

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NationStates - Max Barry

Grades
6 to 12
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There are plenty of simulation interactives for major life events such as pandemics, but what happens in everyday life? NationStates brings to life daily decisions. This multiplayer...more
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There are plenty of simulation interactives for major life events such as pandemics, but what happens in everyday life? NationStates brings to life daily decisions. This multiplayer online interactive features you as the head of your nation to create and shape how you see fit. To get started, create your nation by giving it a name. Customize various aspects, such as the flag, history, and national animal. Then get into the heart of your nation: political, social, and economic issues. These choices determine the initial status of your nation. As you play, these problems will change with your choices. Every day an issue is presented and the choices you make affect the outcome of your nation. Your choices become the national law in your nation. Warning: There is one problem a day, but you can change that to two in your account settings. As you play, various aspects of your nation change and the type of government shifts (maybe even including anarchy). Choose to stay an independent nation or join others to create a region. Participate in the World Assembly (the pretend U.N.). View debates in the forum that actually touch on current events in the game and in real life. One thing to note: If you are not attentive to the issues that come up each day, the game ends quickly. The good news is that it takes very little time to view the issue, act, and see the result. Note: This interactive is loosely based on the novel Jennifer Government by Max Barry.
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tag(s): foreign policy (16), money (193), politics (99), sociology (22)

In the Classroom

Students can use this interactive individually, making connections to their choice, results, and connections to actual world events, present and past. Additionally, students can join a region and see how their decisions affect other nations. A great lesson is to allow students to run their nation according to their political views and see the results as they unfold through play. Be sure to treat this seriously as the issues presented here are actual issues that governments must deal with daily. Even making a decision within your political viewpoint can lead to results that are not anticipated. Require students to discuss their viewpoint, why they believe they are right, the resulting consequence, and how it has changed what they believe. Following the play, give time for students to research an initiative or action a country made and the resulting consequences that have resulted. Present, discuss, or debate these with the class. Allow every student in class to have a voice by using a student response system such as Infuse Learning, reviewed here, or GoSoapBox, reviewed here.

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