Saturday, September 13, 2014

My Current Top Tech Tools

From Teaching and Technology 

I'm a huge fan of technology to change how we teach and learn but I always start with the 'Why' of using it.  I need to be able to clearly articulate how it impacts learning and teaching in a positive manner and why I'm using it.  I need my students to also be able to do this.  If one of us can't, then it's not a tool we need to be using.

We start with the learning and then look for the tool to support what we are doing or trying to achieve. We also focus on using the SAMR model of technology use so that it is changing our learning and teaching us skills for the future.

Over the years I've tried so many different tools.  Some I still use regularly while others have been exchanged for more effective tools.  The tools I've chosen are those which I've consistently been able to use with my students of all ages over the past few years and which can be adapted to meet changing needs - both for the students and myself.

My top tech tools that impact learning and teaching are:

This is still my favourite blogging tool.  I've used many others but love the simplicity and ease of use of this one.  Great for students and new bloggers.  Huge benefit that it links in with all things Google.  Blogging has been the single most powerful thing I've done with my students in recent years in terms of creating and sharing learning and giving and receiving feedback.  Blogging gives our students an authentic audience.

If you want to motivate writers - including the 'reluctant' ones, then you really can't go past this.  It's a wonderful tool for digital storytelling.  Beautiful artwork - all free to use so you don't have to worry about copyright - that stimulates the senses and the imagination.  Great for all ages.  Completed writing / books can be shared and / or embedded.  Easy to use.  Completed work becomes a virtual storybook.

I am such a fan of Google Apps for Education (GAFE), Google Classroom - just starting to explore this and everything else that can be linked to create anytime, anywhere learning for my students and also for me.
This has been one of the most powerful suites of tools I've used in my teaching career.  It's been a way of creating online communities where collaboration and creation of new knowledge is to the fore.

I love this application for sharing learning and giving and receiving feedback.  Feedback can be given by typing in your response or recording your response.  It incorporates images and text as well as sound.
Can be used on mobile devices too  - great for quick recording on the go and sharing learning.

This is software that my class and I had a part in designing.  It's a video tool which has so many different uses - only limited by our imaginations.  It's point of difference is that it incorporates a rolling teleprompt feature which is absolutely fantastic for building student confidence - great for students learning another language too.  The completed videos can be uploaded and embedded in a variety of places or, if under 1 minute, you can attach supporting documents for sharing through email.  Fantastic for assessment too!

Day 13 @TeachThought blogging challenge  #reflectiveteacher

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