Apps I've used, things I've tried, stuff I've learned about, and sometimes stuff that is just plain cool.
These sites are amazing. I don't know why it took me so long to actually start using them. I thank @jcorippo for telling me about Zaption.
So, what do these sites do? Well, they allow you to take videos, either your own or from youTube (because who likes to recreate the wheel) and embed questions into the video that student (or faculty if at a meeting...) have to answer.
This helps with the formative assessment process in an amazing way:
1) Students like video, especially short and sweet ones.
2) Students like to interact with video
3) The teacher gets to check as students are going through the lesson how they answered and give immediate response and intervention if necessary
4) Teacher can use the data to see how to proceed
5) These videos <embed> in many different sites. I use Goformative.
OK, so the feedback here? Students loved it. I mean they loved it and responded better than with other tools I have used in the past. They stayed more engaged and payed attention. They had to pay attention to since if they didn't they'd have to go back, review, and then answer the question.
Right now I use the free Zaption service. The paid service is a little steep for me right now, but the paid service offers other features such as requiring students to answer a question before advancing on. There are workarounds to this, but still.
Which one is better? Check them both out and see what you like. They have different features and the interface is slightly different. Choose for yourself and make it happen! I like the idea of what these can do for faculty meetings before we do a sendoff!
Make a gif is an easy to use tool that allows you to create animated gifs quickly. These can be used for fun animations or for showing steps by step tutorials on how to do something. Take a look at an animated gif I created to show how to enable screen shot shortcuts on Mac OS:
How can this be used in a lesson? Have students create a slide show to describe the steps to do a task. They put all the images into make a gif, dowload the image, and turn it into the LMS, Google Classroom, or whatever the teacher has students using.
LMS or not, Google Classroom keeps getting better and better. The API addition has awesome potential. Today I logged in and got to work on my new classrooms and start exploring the new features!
No longer do we have only assignments and announcements, we have reusing posts, creating questions, and move posts to the top.
Reuse a post? Nice since we don't want to always 'cut and paste'.
Create a question - nice for entrance/exit tickets, check for understanding, and more! This addition may be my favorite update yet!
Move posts to the top:
Click on the dots by the announcement/assignment and move it to the top.
It stays at the top until the next post is created.
I love using Google Maps, especially in a language class. This awesome tool is great to help kids connect not only with the language, but with the country and places they are learning about.
My German 3 students do a project on a little island in the North Sea called Helgoland. I never learned about Helgoland and I'm thrilled they get to learn about this island, the culture, and the history. It's really tiny, but can be a great tourist visit if you want to go. My students had to retell a vacation they took to Helgoland and give me a day-by-day walkthrough of their three-day/two-night visit, all in German of course and using the narrative past.
This was only one part as they also had to do a screencast of their narration and tell me about their vacation as well. Click on the link to visit the map.
As a World Language teacher, I am always struggling to get my students to 'talk'. Despite my best efforts in encouraging them to share and speak up, they don't want to. Why? They are afraid of making mistakes and looking silly in front of their peers. I always emphasize throughout the year that mistakes HAVE TO HAPPEN and we will all learn from one anothers mistakes and will improve on how to use the language. But, how do we get students who still don't want to speak to find their voice and express themselves?
I'm always discovering new apps that help us in the classroom to new, exciting, and cool things. Each has a purpose or different angle, but in the end, these apps are there to help students find their voice and speak up when maybe that can't do it in a traditional manner. Honestly, I've received some clever and good projects from students using media tools who are otherwise ALWAYS QUIET.
Watch the following video to get an idea of what can happen:
So, this project took only a little bit of prep and this is for a jr. high student in 8th grade. This is the set up:
What are some other tools I use to get kids to talk:
Toontastic (great now that it is free)
Puppet Pals 2 (or the first one as well)
Touchcast - more on this awesome tool later!
Voice Record Pro 7
What are some of the tools you use to get your kids to talk?
There are way too many apps and tools to work with. Every week I experience a new tool for use in the classroom and begin thinking about how my students might use it. The problem is, though, I end up having a huge pile of tools and my kids and I can get confused or forget what tool we need for what purpose (or purposes.)
So, at the beginning of each year, I train my students on the 'core' set of apps and tools I want them to master. During the course of the year I will bring in other tools the we use - either for app smashing or for specific projects. In the end, the kids have mastery of specific tools for the classroom and their experience is expanded when we introduce other tools.
Here is the list of iPad apps we use in the German classroom that all kids are to have mastery of:
Here is the list of online tools and Websites we use that all are to have mastery of:
What tools do you use? Drop me a line and let me know.