TeachersFirst Edge

New web 2.0 tools appear each day. Many of these tools were not originally intended for classroom use, but they can be powerful learning tools for today's techno-savvy students and their more adventurous teachers. These sites appear (and frequently disappear) very quickly, launched by creative techno-geeks out there in the world.

Many of these tools require a higher-than-average set of teacher tech skills or some extra monitoring to assure student "safety." TeachersFirst Edge reviews these "tools on the Edge" carefully, and with specific ideas for using them safely and effectively in teaching and learning. Reviews point out any safety or policy concerns for the tool and offer links to management tips for each concern.

Especially popular is this subset of the Edge: BYOD Dream Tools: Free tools that work on any device. Look for the device agnostic tool tag in any review.

This is the world your students already know. Try teaching in their vernacular. A little adventurousness makes for powerful learning.

See General Tips for using Edge Tools - a must for first-time users

Browse the full listing of detailed safety/school policy tips or save time by reading them as needed from each tool review.

Learn about school web filtering, a critical issue with many "Edge" tools

If you try one of these tools and find it especially useful, be sure to leave a comment on it to share your students' successes with other teachers. If you know of another tool that teachers would find beneficial, please suggest it via our webmaster account, as a "suggested resource."

Here's the Edge:

 

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Google Drawings - Google

Grades
K to 12
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Google Drawings is a collaborative drawing tool included with your Google Drive account. To find it, select "new", "more", then choose Google Drawings. Use the tools found on the site...more
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Google Drawings is a collaborative drawing tool included with your Google Drive account. To find it, select "new", "more", then choose Google Drawings. Use the tools found on the site to add shapes, lines, text, and more. Import images from your drive or save Creative Commons images for use. Use the share option to send the links to other users to edit (be sure that your settings allow users with the link to edit the document). To view the revision history for any drawing select "file" and "see the revision history." Images automatically save to your Google Drive and can be downloaded to your computer by saving in a variety of formats including jpg, pdf, and png. Use the publish option to create an embed code and embed into your website.

tag(s): collaboration (51), drawing (73), images (269)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this easy to use tool for a variety of classroom uses. Upload images and use the text tool to add digital annotations. Ask students to add digital annotations to images, for example, different landforms or to share as an assessment. Use the shape tool to create quick and easy timelines. This is perfect for use as a quick activity on your interactive timeline to help students understand the sequence of a story or a timeline of historic events. Create graphic organizers and mind maps easily by using the shapes tools, drawing lines, and adding text with links to additional information. When working on group projects, suggest students collaborate together to create and annotate images to include with a final multimedia presentation. Use Google Drawings to easily create infographics to share information on any topic.

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Mt. Cleverest - James Villarrubia and Bernie Prat

Grades
5 to 12
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Mt. Cleverest uses AI technology to create quizzes based on any content you provide. Use videos, lesson plans, websites, and more and provide the URL for use. Mt. Cleverest's artificial...more
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Mt. Cleverest uses AI technology to create quizzes based on any content you provide. Use videos, lesson plans, websites, and more and provide the URL for use. Mt. Cleverest's artificial intelligence (they call it Andi) takes your information and turns it into quiz questions ranked and ordered by real-world performance based on research. Order and choose items based on your needs, then assign to students. Students can take variations of the quiz as many times as necessary until they pass. Mt. Cleverest grades student responses and emails scores to you on your selected due date.

tag(s): quiz (76), quizzes (92)

In the Classroom

Use Mt. Cleverest to create quizzes as pretests or final assessments. Use your documents stored in Google Drive or OneDrive to provide the URL for creating quizzes. Mt. Cleverest includes a search feature for finding previous quizzes, take advantage of this to add content for your classroom. Ask students to reflect on missed quiz questions and research the content further. Have them replace paper and pen and extend their learning by sharing their reflections on a simple webpage using Hashify, reviewed here. Hashify provides a simple tool for sharing texts and images without the distractions of multiple backgrounds and formatting options.

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ZoteroBib - Corporation for Digital Scholarship

Grades
6 to 12
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Do you need help with creating bibliographies? ZoteroBib is here to help. Add any URL, book, title, or another identifier to begin. Choose from over 9,300 different style options to...more
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Do you need help with creating bibliographies? ZoteroBib is here to help. Add any URL, book, title, or another identifier to begin. Choose from over 9,300 different style options to create a citation. ZoteroBib also includes an option for manual entry of information. When complete, copy the citation to your device's clipboard or generate a link to view online.

tag(s): citations (32), expository writing (38), persuasive writing (53), plagiarism (35), Research (13)

In the Classroom

Include this tool on all classroom computers and as a link on your class website for student use. This bibliography tool help students properly format their Works Cited pages. Use this tool to help keep your students (or even yourself) organized! Make sure you teach plagiarism lessons about paraphrasing and proper citation of sources, so students use this tool properly! As teachers, we need to be aware that such a tool exists, since savvy students may compile a "paper" without a logical thought pattern simply by clicking to include suggestions from ZoteroBib or other citation creation tools. The best strategy for such a tool is to show students how to use it well. Take the drudgery out of writing formal papers by emphasizing thinking over mechanics. Whether teaching beginning research or seniors in high school, introduce them to ZoteroBib. For younger students, seeing all the formatting and citing done correctly, from the beginning, makes sense whether it is the body of the writing or the bibliography. With either age group, give lessons about each part of a paper or letter. Demonstrate on an interactive whiteboard and think out loud as a group to pull together ideas, sources, quotes, and more to support an argument and build a paper. You can use it, too, when you write for your graduate program. Since you can choose from MLA, APA, or Chicago Style, you do not have to worry about memorizing punctuation and double checking the format.

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Grammar Lookup - Kamran Khan

Grades
K to 12
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Check text for grammar and punctuation mistakes using Grammar Lookup. Type or paste any text then choose the Lookup button to view highlighted errors. Click on highlighted areas to...more
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Check text for grammar and punctuation mistakes using Grammar Lookup. Type or paste any text then choose the Lookup button to view highlighted errors. Click on highlighted areas to see an explanation of the error, change and replace writing, or link to a further description of the grammar mistake.

tag(s): editing (79), grammar (205), proofreading (24), spelling (165), writing (361)

In the Classroom

Include Grammar Lookup with other options for students to use when editing and revising work. Have students copy and paste writing projects into the text editor for a final check for spelling and grammar mistakes after making their last revisions. Continued use of this tool helps students correct writing on their own after seeing common errors in their writing. Never send out a newsletter or post to your web page with spelling or grammar errors again! Use Grammar Lookup to spell check and suggest corrections for any published writing projects. Reinforce learning by asking students to share before and after of written projects. Along with submitting a rough draft and final draft, ask students to take a screenshot of text copied into Grammar Lookup along with the highlighted errors. Insert this screenshot into the rough draft as an image using Google Docs or Microsoft Word. Modify learning and ask students to use their screenshot with highlighted errors to create a Thinglink image, reviewed here. Add text, image examples, and voice recordings to create a short presentation highlighting grammar mistakes and suggestions for corrections.
 

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Collabify - collabify.app

Grades
4 to 12
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Participate in an online meeting with one click using Collabify, no registration or download required. Click to begin your session, then share the URL with the other participant. Features...more
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Participate in an online meeting with one click using Collabify, no registration or download required. Click to begin your session, then share the URL with the other participant. Features include chat, webcam access, screen sharing, and file sharing. Using this site without registration allows you to participate in one-on-one meetings, register to invite up to four participants.

tag(s): chat (45), collaboration (51), parent conferences (22), parents (52)

In the Classroom

Use Collabify to set up virtual parent/teacher conferences with participants located anywhere in the world. Collabify 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.

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 on 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" but have students work from home for group projects. Make sure you are protecting the safety of student work and identity and are within your school's Acceptable Use Policy.

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Construct3 - Construct.net

Grades
K to 1
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Design and create games with Construct3. Choose from many different formats including puzzles, role-play, and storybooks along with a choice of beginner and intermediate level coding...more
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Design and create games with Construct3. Choose from many different formats including puzzles, role-play, and storybooks along with a choice of beginner and intermediate level coding ability options. Take advantage of the beginner's guide and tutorials to learn and practice the available features. All of the game options include drag and drop coding features. Free accounts offer you up to 25 events per game, two layers per layout, two effects per game, and one font choice. To share, publish your finished game to the site's arcade or download to your server.

tag(s): coding (76), game based learning (148), gamification (83), STEM (208)

In the Classroom

Include Construct3 with your other options for teaching coding to students. Take advantage of the included levels to differentiate learning based on knowledge of coding. If you are uncomfortable with coding, enlist students to become technology coaches in your classroom to teach and share their knowledge with others. Use and share Google Forms to create how-to guides for students to get started including images with tips and suggestions. Ask "in-the-know" students to enhance their learning and create one-page websites using Jimdo, reviewed here, sharing advice for individual games included in Construct3. As students become familiar with coding, have them use My Simpleshow, reviewed here to redefine what they learned by creating simple explainer videos detailing how to build and share personalized games.

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ZineLab Digital Zines - ZineLab

Grades
6 to 12
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Build, save, and share interactive magazines with ZineLab. Use the included templates to add many forms of content including images, video, maps, and text. After creating an account,...more
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Build, save, and share interactive magazines with ZineLab. Use the included templates to add many forms of content including images, video, maps, and text. After creating an account, select to begin creating your magazine. Watch the tutorial to get started or select items from the dashboard to upload and use. Uploaded images are limited to 2mb in size. When finished, publish your zine and share using the URL created. Free accounts allow you to access basic templates and create up to six zines.

tag(s): blogs (80), digital storytelling (143)

In the Classroom

Before using this site, share the tutorials and how-to information with students to get them started. Modify learning for your tech-savvy or gifted students to create a screen recording tutorial using Free Screen Recorder Online, reviewed here, or an explainer video using My Simpleshow, reviewed here, to share on your class website or blog for students who need additional help on any features. If image files are too large, reduce them using Web Resizer, reviewed here. Once students are familiar with the site, create magazines using student images to share class projects or use available images found in ZineLab to create and share research information.

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Mix - StumbleUpon

Grades
6 to 12
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Are you looking for some of the best content on the web? Use Mix to browse and search for information based on your interests and those of like-minded people. ...more
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Are you looking for some of the best content on the web? Use Mix to browse and search for information based on your interests and those of like-minded people. Mix imports content from news sources, popular blogs, and additional world-wide resources. The more you browse and save material, the more Mix will refine its understanding of what you like. Create collections by adding information found on the site or by keeping links to web content found as you browse the Internet. Use Mix's web browser extension to save URL's to collections with just one click. When ready to share your collection, use the share icon to copy the link, send via email, or share on social media.

tag(s): bookmarks (53), evaluating sources (16), social networking (92)

In the Classroom

Use Mix for your personal research and professional development. Visit Mix occasionally to find new ideas and new sites for teaching. Create and share collections of websites to share with students for use with research projects. For example, as you prepare to teach a science unit on plants, create a collection containing news articles, explainer sites, and online games for students to use as a virtual resource for supplementing classroom lessons. Include documents, slide presentations, and more from your Google Drive for student access from any device. Another use of Mix is to create collections when teaching students how to evaluate online resources. Create a collection from a variety of different resources based on the same topic and ask students to reflect upon the validity of the information and the source. Ask them to use a presentation tool like Sway, reviewed here to share their findings by including links to the information along with supporting evidence. Another idea for using Mix is for students to create collections to share as part of multimedia projects as a virtual bibliography. In addition to websites shared, ask them to add their written work, images, or other creations. Mix is an excellent tool for creating an online portfolio for students to use when applying to college. Show students how to easily create new collections using their work, but personalized to individual college applications.

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4-Circle Venn Diagram Creator - Canva

Grades
K to 12
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Create your own 4-Circle Venn diagram with Canva's 5-step creator. After logging in to your free account, select a template from among several choices. Customize your design by adding...more
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Create your own 4-Circle Venn diagram with Canva's 5-step creator. After logging in to your free account, select a template from among several choices. Customize your design by adding text and images and personalizing additional elements, including colors. When finished, save your diagram and download to your computer or share using the many options provided, including publishing as a website.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (174), graphic design (41), images (269), venn diagrams (18)

In the Classroom

Work together as a class to complete a 4-Circle Venn Diagram on your interactive whiteboard (or with a projector) to represent an overlap of topics in any subject. For example, use this tool to compare and contrast students' involvement in four different sports, compare events or settings in four novels, or characteristics of four groups of animals. Once students become comfortable with Venn Diagrams, ask them to include them in a longer presentation created using a tool like Wakelet, reviewed here. Use Wakelet to modify classroom technology by having students include their writing, images, diagrams, videos, and more.

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Polyup: Mod with Math - Dr. Amir Zarkesh, Professor Yahya Tabesh, and Shaya Zarkesh

Grades
K to 12
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Polyup is a web-based math problem-solving app for grades K-12. Use Polyup in several different ways for students to explore and play with numbers. Choose Play to work with numbers...more
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Polyup is a web-based math problem-solving app for grades K-12. Use Polyup in several different ways for students to explore and play with numbers. Choose Play to work with numbers in the computational thinking playground or select from featured machines to work with specific math functions. Find options for your grade level by selecting from the lesson plans, with included learning modules, from those provided within the several different grade bands.

tag(s): addition (224), coding (76), decimals (125), division (157), equations (154), fractions (231), functions (70), game based learning (148), geometric shapes (170), logic (251), measurement (180), multiplication (210), operations (120), probability (135), problem solving (293), pythagorean theorem (34), ratios (66), square roots (21), statistics (130), subtraction (186)

In the Classroom

Polyup is perfect for use in math classrooms in a variety of ways. Become acquainted with the free lesson plans to incorporate Polyup activities based on specific math skills. Encourage problem-solving and math exploration by including a link to Polyup on classroom computers. Instead of assigning a worksheet or other math activity for homework, ask students to spend time exploring Polyup at home. Extend and assess student learning by using FlipGrid, reviewed here, for students to provide a short video reflection on their learning activity. Optional registration allows you or your students to save progress and create your own machines.

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Online Photo Editor - Online Photo Editor

Grades
K to 12
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Do you need a free, easy to use, no registration required basic photo editor? Online Photo Editor is just what you are looking for. Choose start editing and open a ...more
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Do you need a free, easy to use, no registration required basic photo editor? Online Photo Editor is just what you are looking for. Choose start editing and open a photo from your computer to begin. Select links at the top of your screen to use filters, add text, frames, shapes, and more. This photo editor also lets you add images on top of images. When finished, click save to download to your computer as a PNG file.

tag(s): editing (79), images (269), photography (144)

In the Classroom

Employ the Online Photo Editor for virtually all classroom photo editing needs and to enhance your classroom technology use. In primary grades, this tool could be useful for teachers to use to edit pictures from a field trip, science experiments, and more. Share the editing process with younger students using an interactive whiteboard or projector. Edit together! Encourage older students to use this tool on images for projects or presentations. Use this tool in photography or art classes. Try out the editor to edit pictures to fit styles of pictures when doing historical reports or to set a mood. Find text options for the photos themselves to tell the stories. Have students annotate or label Creative Commons online images of cells, structures of an animal, and much more.
 

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Microsoft Forms - Microsoft

Grades
K to 12
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Do you need a quick and easy way to create forms, quizzes, and polls? Microsoft Forms has you covered. Create surveys and collect data in real-time, assign quizzes with your ...more
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Do you need a quick and easy way to create forms, quizzes, and polls? Microsoft Forms has you covered. Create surveys and collect data in real-time, assign quizzes with your point values for automatic grading, and create polls on the fly to quickly receive responses for immediate use. Sign in to your Microsoft account to begin (or create a free account) and select either a new form or quiz. Click on the plus mark and follow prompts to add new items. Add an image to any part of the form using the search bar or upload your own. Forms also offer the option to add a YouTube video within questions. Forms works on all devices, use the preview to see your form as it appears on computers or mobile devices before sending. Share your form using the URL, QR code, or embed in a website or email. View responses through the response tab created with your form. Return to previous forms as needed to review the data collected or duplicate forms to create new polls or surveys.

tag(s): assessment (123), polls and surveys (48), spreadsheets (23)

In the Classroom

Discover the benefits of using Microsoft Forms in your classroom to create surveys for parents and students at the beginning of the year to learn about student interests, create parent volunteer lists, and much more. Create a sign in and sign out sheet for classroom library materials, including books and digital equipment. Use Microsoft Forms to set up and collaborate on lesson plans, include check boxes to standards, materials needed, and covered content. Microsoft Forms is perfect to use for assessment purposes - create online quizzes and exit tickets. Have students use Microsoft Forms to prepare and submit reading logs, brainstorm, and collaborate with fellow students, create "choose your own adventure" stories, or schedule reading and writing conference times. Use Microsoft Forms to set up and share rubrics for any project, have students complete the rubric and turn in with any completed assignment. The uses for Microsoft Forms are as unlimited as your imagination; this is a must-have tool for all classrooms!

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PhotoScissors Background Remover - teorex

Grades
K to 12
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Instantly change the look of your images by removing the background with PhotoScissors. Download the program onto your computer or upload a JPG or PNG image to begin. The site ...more
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Instantly change the look of your images by removing the background with PhotoScissors. Download the program onto your computer or upload a JPG or PNG image to begin. The site supports images up to 5Mb with 2.1Mpx resolution. Follow the directions to adjust areas to include or delete. After removing the background, continue designing your image by adding a colored background, uploading an image, or saving as transparent. When complete, download to your computer.

tag(s): editing (79), images (269), photography (144), preK (281)

In the Classroom

Share with students for use with projects to enhance classroom technology and create and combine images without busy backgrounds. For example, create pictures of presidents, castles, or plants for use with any report or on slides for a presentation. Take pictures of students; then remove the background. Save images for use throughout the year in hall displays, bulletin boards, on reward certificates, etc. Add a background to student images as a story starter on historic events, career presentations, or place them as a character within a novel. Modify classroom technology use by having students use an easy website creator like Carrd, reviewed here, where students can upload their image and share their finished story. Introduce a new unit by creating an image using PhotoScissors to place your class in a foreign land. Share that image on FlipGrid, reviewed here, to use as an anticipatory set and ask students to post a video response sharing their thoughts on where they are going and what they already know about the area.
 

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ZapWorks - Zappar Ltd.

Grades
8 to 12
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Create and publish augmented reality (AR) experiences with ZapWorks Studio and ZapWorks Designer. Sign up for a personal account to receive five free experiences. Use the studio tools...more
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Create and publish augmented reality (AR) experiences with ZapWorks Studio and ZapWorks Designer. Sign up for a personal account to receive five free experiences. Use the studio tools to add digital objects to your world or create portals into worlds developed using your imagination. For an easier introduction to the world of AR, try ZapWorks Designer. Designer uses drag-and-drop features for creating experiences using images, video, audio, and more. When finished, publish to the Zappar app.

tag(s): augmented reality (6), coding (76), graphic design (41)

In the Classroom

Get to know ZapWorks through the many robust tutorials and guides found on the site. Share ZapWorks with students interested in design, computer coding, and virtual and augmented reality. Redefine classroom technology by offering students the opportunity to create an augmented reality experience as an alternative to a book report, research project, or multimedia presentation. In science class ask students to create a project demonstrating the water cycle, for literature have students produce their vision of the setting of a book, or use the site to create an animated business card featuring a famous character from history. As students become proficient in using the site, modify classroom technology by asking them to share their expertise with others by creating explainer videos using Biteable, reviewed here. Post these videos on your class website for students to access both at home and at school.

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Teleprompt.me - Corey Griffin

Grades
3 to 12
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Use your computer's microphone to create an easy to use teleprompter with Teleprompt.me. Copy and paste your script to start with this very easy to use tool. Be sure to ...more
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Use your computer's microphone to create an easy to use teleprompter with Teleprompt.me. Copy and paste your script to start with this very easy to use tool. Be sure to allow the site to access your microphone, and that's it! Start reading your script and the words you speak fade in real time. Change the color of the text to suit your needs and adjust font size. Make a mistake? No problem, click restart to return to the beginning. Another option is to click on any word in your text, all portions of your text before that word fade away.

tag(s): fluency (24), speech (86)

In the Classroom

Telepromt.me is a great addition to any classroom and, will enhance your classroom technology use. Ask students to use this tool for presentations to make speeches more audience-friendly than looking down and reading from a paper script. Help struggling readers practice fluency and focus on individual words using this tool with any reading material. Help students listen to their own speech by asking them to record their reading using Telepromt.me and using Vocaroo, reviewed here, or a screen recording tool like Free Screen Recorder Online, reviewed here. Do your students create podcasts? If so, use this teleprompter when reading from scripted material used in podcasts. Anchor, reviewed here, is an excellent tool for creating and sharing your podcasts.
 

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Tall Tweets - Digital Inspiration

Grades
K to 12
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Up your Twitter game with Tall Tweets! This free, easy to use tool creates animated GIFs from Google Slides. Sign in with your Google account to access your slides, then ...more
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Up your Twitter game with Tall Tweets! This free, easy to use tool creates animated GIFs from Google Slides. Sign in with your Google account to access your slides, then choose a slide presentation from your Google Drive. Tall Tweets process your presentation by creating an image for each slide. Once converted, use options to select the width of your GIF and length for each image to appear. Use the sequence of slide option to change the order of slides or choose images to include in the GIF. After making selections, create your GIF to download or share via Twitter. Be sure to watch the Getting Started Guide video for an explanation of how to use this site and options for customizing your GIF.

tag(s): animation (60), images (269), slides (53), twitter (38)

In the Classroom

If using Twitter, use Tall Tweets to enhance messages in a variety of ways. If not using Twitter, Tall Tweets is an excellent tool to help you start. Of course, even non-Twitter users will love this site to download images onto your computer. Pique student's interest in upcoming lessons using Tall Tweets to create an animated GIF of portions of your slide presentation. Encourage parent participation and collaboration by tweeting a GIF of classroom activities, including students involved in learning activities (of course, be sure to understand and adhere to your district's privacy policies). If you teach older students, ask them to tweet out a preview of their upcoming classroom presentations. Use Tall Tweets when working on professional development activities to share successes or upcoming professional development opportunities. Ask students to create Google Slides for any classroom purpose - create slides with different types of animals, share facts about states or countries, or demonstrate math problem-solving tips. Create your GIF from the slides and have students share them onto a Padlet, reviewed here, as a collaboration activity with their peers. Ask students to use Google Slides to organize information to explain an activity, for example, a science experiment, then create an animated GIF from the slides. After organizing their information, enhance classroom technology use and ask them to create an explainer video using My Simpleshow, reviewed here, featuring the steps and science learned in the experiment. Take student learning even further using Wakelet, reviewed here. Ask students to use Wakelet as part of their reflection on their learning experience by including text, images, the slide presentation, and animated GIFs created using Tall Tweets. If students used Twitter to share their GIF, use Wakelet's features to include their Tweet directly into the Wakelet presentation.
 

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CheckMark - EdTech Team

Grades
6 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
CheckMark is a Chrome extension for providing feedback on Google documents. Download and install the extension and enable it to work with your browser. Highlight text found in Google...more
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CheckMark is a Chrome extension for providing feedback on Google documents. Download and install the extension and enable it to work with your browser. Highlight text found in Google Docs or Slides then select from the frequently used comments or insert your own. Comments include mentions of passive voice, spelling, grammar, and more. Also, CheckMark tracks the repetition of each comment in the document. Be sure to watch the video tutorials to understand and use the included features.

tag(s): editing (79), rubrics (31)

In the Classroom

Install CheckMark on your Chrome browser as a time-saver and aid to providing feedback to students with a focus on improvement instead of providing a written grade. Have students use CheckMark to review their work before turning it in for a final grade. Ask them to take a screenshot of the initial findings and include it with their final draft. Enhance classroom technology use with an easy website creator like Hashify, reviewed here, and have students reflect on their work and changes made.

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Golden - Sam Fankuchen

Grades
K to 12
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Are you looking for a way to share, organize, and document volunteer opportunities? Golden is your answer. Sign up with Golden and begin importing and creating lists of volunteers....more
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Are you looking for a way to share, organize, and document volunteer opportunities? Golden is your answer. Sign up with Golden and begin importing and creating lists of volunteers. Share opportunities to any group and collect registrations within the site. Use the messaging features to send updates and relevant information to volunteer groups. The free school account offers 3 user logins to manage your account.

tag(s): classroom management (146), organizational skills (106)

In the Classroom

Many schools require students to volunteer, use Golden to help manage your school's volunteer program. Be sure to use the sharing features to place volunteering opportunities on your district, school, and class websites. Help students understand the value of volunteering by taking their work beyond just time spent. Use an online bulletin board like Corkboard, reviewed here, to share and brainstorm areas of student interest with the understanding that volunteering will be more meaningful if it is something chosen by the student and not viewed as a required assignment. Encourage students to document their volunteering by taking photos and videos throughout the experience. Consider extending classroom technology by asking students to create a podcast using Buzzsprout, reviewed here, to encourage others to volunteer by sharing their personal stories and reflections upon their own experience. As a reflection activity, and to modify classroom technology use, ask students to create and share a presentation using Sway, reviewed here. Use Sway to include images, text, and more to tell their volunteering story.

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Suan - Shlomo Kraus, Eyal Datz, and Avi Schneebaum

Grades
K to 12
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Create and share mixtapes using content from YouTube and SoundCloud with Suan. This entertaining site makes it easy to decorate, build, and share music without ads or messages. Type...more
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Create and share mixtapes using content from YouTube and SoundCloud with Suan. This entertaining site makes it easy to decorate, build, and share music without ads or messages. Type in the name of your first song to search and choose your source from YouTube or SoundCloud and click to add to your list. Add as many songs as you like and rearrange as you please. Use the icons under the cassette to change the cassette's appearance, and add doodles, stickers, and text. Save your mixtape to your account then share using social media links or copy the URL to share.

tag(s): songs (52)

In the Classroom

Use Suan to create mixtapes for classroom use in many situations. Create a mixtape with soothing music to play during quiet times or to calm students after active periods. Use this site in music class to put together mixes of genres, composers, or instruments being studied. Find music from different eras or podcasts to create a mix to introduce the period to students. Ask students to create music mixes from their own material shared on SoundCloud as part of a course portfolio. Enhance students' technology use in class by including the URL to their mixtape in a presentation created using Wakelet, reviewed here; ask them to include video, images, and original student work.

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Blockly - Google

Grades
4 to 12
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Blockly is an open source library of drag and drop blocks to use for generating computer codes. Use each block to stack and add information to create code in an ...more
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Blockly is an open source library of drag and drop blocks to use for generating computer codes. Use each block to stack and add information to create code in an infinite number of ways. After creating your work using Blockly, use the drop-down box to view and copy the code in JavaScript, Python, and other coding formats. For full instructions on using Blockly, be sure to follow the link for Guides at the top of the Blockly home page.

Blockly is an open source library of drag and drop blocks to use for generating computer codes. Use each block to stack and add information to create code in an infinite number of ways. After creating your work using Blockly, use the drop-down box to view and copy the code in JavaScript, Python, and other coding formats. For full instructions on using Blockly, be sure to follow the link for Guides at the top of the Blockly home page.

tag(s): coding (76), computers (101), game based learning (148), STEM (208)

In the Classroom

Use Blockly as an interesting way to introduce coding to your class for beginners and experienced coders. Display Blockly on your interactive whiteboard or projector as you explore the different features of the site, then have students create and explore on their own. To generate ideas on how to use Blockly, have students practice using Blockly at Blockly Games, reviewed here. After school clubs and activities can use Blockly to learn to code. Use this tool with gifted students for a great challenge. Set up a coding activity center for interested students when they finish class work or for rainy days and snow days. Share this link on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom.
 

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