Easy Innovations – AIMS 2011

Easy Innovations: Web Tech Tools in the Classroom – AIMS (Session 1)

AIMS Annual Conference October 31, 2011 10:15-11:15 am

Chip Chase
Technology Integration Specialist
Capital City Public Charter School
schase@ccpcs.org
@chipchase

About this Presentation:

In this first of two sessions, we will focus on how various types of web technology tools can be used to enhance instruction. The tools are organized by function, selected based upon their usability and appropriateness of addressing standards-based technology skills.

Watch the Presentation

Click on the link below to view the Prezi Presentation:

http://prezi.com/6pbyuek3jnh2/easy-innovations-web-tech-tools-in-the-classroom-part-1/

Read the Backchannel

During the presentation attendees were encouraged to share their thoughts, including their favorite tools not listed in this presentation.

Click here to view the transcript of the backchannel:

http://todaysmeet.com/aimseasy1

Discussion Prompts:

  • Have you used these tools in the classroom?
  • Did you have a positive or negative experience with these tools?
  • What types of skills are missing from this presentation?
  • What tools are missing from this presentation?
  •  What tool are you most interested in using?

Table of Resources:

In this presentation, the web tech tools that will be mentioned have been organized by the types of skills they address.  Click on the skills to see more details.

Students as Meaningful Contributors

Tools for Students and Teachers

1: Tools Focusing on the Process of Learning

2: Tools Focusing on Learning Products

Content Curation: Bookmarking
Personal Landing Pages
Note-Taking
• Social Web: Learning Management Systems
• Social Web: Polling
Content Curation: Readers
Task Management
File Management
• Citation
• Social Web: Backchannel
• Social Web: Video Conferencing
Presentation Tools
Writing: Documents
Writing: Blogs
Podcasting/Audio
• Screen Sharing
• Mind-Mapping
• Free Photos
• Free Video
PowerPoint Hosting
Website Tours
Create a Website
• Create a Wiki
• Video & Animation
• Infographics
• Free Audio
• File Conversion

Instructional Resources

Tools just for Teachers

• Learning Management Systems
• Flashcard & Study
• Personal Learning Network
• Online Quizzes
• Instructional Video
• Online Courseware
• Instructional Games
• Find & Evaluate Websites
• Online Textbooks
• Online Grading

Students as Meaningful Contributors

1: Tools for the Process of Learning

Content Curation: Bookmarking

Description: Bookmarking websites allow users to create customized collections of websites, available from multiple browsers, and with varying degrees of collaborative features.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3, 4

Best Practices: Teachers can provide their students with links to important resources, guiding instruction and research. Students can collaborate with others by creating lists for projects, or for their course as a whole.

Diigo (Also Listed in Note-taking)
With this cloud-based note-taking tool, you can collect bookmarks, annotate web pages like a textbook, and then share your resources and notes with others.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Accounts ($20 Annual)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available

Livebinders (Also Listed in Website Tours)
Collect and organize your online resources in tabbed “binders” for easy sharing and presentation.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

Pinterest
Share websites and images you find online on a virtual board. Invite others to share similar images on your board.

  • Collaborative
  • Free, Requires Invite
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Stickr
This bookmarking service lets you create and share sticky notes through your browser. More than other bookmarking cites, you can create a sticky note on any page to keep track of important information, then share it with others through Facebook or Twitter.

  • Collaborative (Links with Facebook)
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Zotero (Also Listed in Citation sites)
This all-in-one note-taking service is especially great for its citation creation feature. Download a Firefox plugin, or separate Zotero application to keep track of all your research and citations.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Downloadable Plugin for Firefox

Delicious
One of the most well known bookmarking sites, Delicious contains a collection of bookmarks from a variety of users. Search “tags” to find results of websites that users have bookmarked. This popular social networking site was recently sold, losing some of its initial functionality.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile-Accessible

Pinboard
Thought by many to be the next Delicious, this bookmarking site requires a one-time fee that mimics the functionality and simplicity of the old Delicious site.

  • Collaborative
  • $9.50 – One Time Fee
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile-Accessible

Xmarks
This bookmark-syncing service works as a downloadable plugin to your browser. Bookmark a page, and your information will sync between multiple computers.

  • Collaborative
  • Free Version / Premium Subscription ($12 Yearly)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available

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Personal Landing Pages

Description: These websites allow the user to create a personal homepage, with visual representations of their favorite sites.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3

Best Practices: Teachers can have students create personal landing pages at the beginning of the semester or unit, allowing students to create quick links to resources important to the classroom.

Symbaloo
Use Symbaloo to create a web presence filled with bookmarks of your own choosing. You can organize the bookmarks in the intuitive interface in any way you choose.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

iGoogle
Create a personal portal page with links to information as you need. You can also embed information from RSS feeds.

  • Collaborative – Share tabs with other Google Users
  • Free
  • Requires Google Account
  • LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Only 2 Clicks
Use this site to create an account and quickly access your favorite bookmarks in under 2 Clicks. Organize links in clickable folders.

  • Collaborative – Share Folders
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile Accessible 

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Note-Taking

Description: Make the research process easier for yourself by using these online note-taking tools. Collaborate with others, sharing your notes with a larger group.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3, 4

Best Practices: Teach proper note-taking skills with these online tools. Have students create personal accounts and share their notes with you. Students can use these services to easily manage research sources. The services with collaborative note-taking aspects, such as Diigo, are great for group projects.

Evernote
This popular online resource and downloadable app lets you create an account and add notes through a variety of options: forward emails, capture websites, take pictures, and record audio. Because Evernote is cloud-based, you can access your notes from anywhere online, and even share your notes on a personal website.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscription ($45 Annual)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available 

Diigo (Also Listed in Content Curation: Bookmarking)
With this cloud-based note-taking tool, you can collect bookmarks, annotate web pages like a textbook, and then share your resources and notes with others.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Accounts ($20 Annual)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available

Noodle Tools (Also Listed in Citation sites)
With a subscription to this online note-taking and citation service, students can create and share with teachers a project that collects their citations on online notes.

  • Collaborative
  • Subscription Based
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

iCyte
Create a free educational subscription to this web-capturing service. With an account you can copy and annotate entire websites for easy retrieval.

  • Collaborative – Share Folders
  • Subscription / $59 per year
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile Accessible 

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Asynchronous Social Web: Learning Management Systems

Description: More and more social-based, closed learning systems are coming on the market. Get the usability of Facebook with the security of more private, teacher-controlled systems.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3, 5

Best Practices: Teach proper use of social media by giving students a teacher-sanctioned social outlet. Keep track of everything your students post to the network, and share links and assignments.

Edmodo
Create a teacher Edmodo account and invite your students to join using a key. As a teacher, control the security settings for your students, fostering collaboration and discussion in a safe environment.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / School & District Accounts Available
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Schoolology
A site similar to Edmodo, with various add-ons and APIs that can expand the experience.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscription for Schools
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Ning
Create your own social networking site and invite your students to join

  • Collaborative
  • $24.95 Monthly Fee
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

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Synchronous Social Web: Polling Systems

Description: Like clicker systems, online polling sites let you get instantaneous feedback from your students. Easily create and conduct formative or summative assessments online. Many services let students reply to polls by text in case computers are limited.

Standards: NETS-S 2

Best Practices: Create polling sessions quickly for exit tickets or quick assessment of various topics. Also, create polling sessions for interactive test review.

Poll Everywhere
Create a free account and allow up to 30 students to fill out online polls. Students can use personal cell phones to text answers.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscription ($15 monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email to create / no accounts required to complete a poll
  • LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Survey Monkey
With a free account, you can create multi-question, multi-page surveys, with robust reporting and filtering.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscription ($17 per month)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

Micropoll
This free service allows you to easily create and analyze polls, and quickly share them through Twitter or Facebook.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

Obsurvey
Another free service that lets you easily create a poll or multiple-question survey. Easily embed surveys on a blog.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

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Content Curation: Readers

Description: Readers allow you to subscribe to websites all over the Internet, bringing new content to you as asson as it is available. Many of these readers also have mobile components.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3, 4

Best Practices: Keep up to date with important topics pertinent to your field. Have students become information experts, continually gathering information on various subjects from multiple online sources.

Instapaper
Create an account with this service to easily bookmark articles to read them later. This service also formats articles with a clean background, removing flash ads for easy reading. The mobile integration Instapaper offers takes the experience to a new level.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile App Available

Google Reader
This Google service allows you to subscribe “feeds” of information across the web. Keep track of new blog posts, comment threads, and more, all in one place.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Google Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Accessible with Mobile Apps

Read It Later
Like Instapaper, you can create an account with this service to easily bookmark articles to read them later. This service also formats articles with a clean background, removing flash ads for easy reading. Read it Later also offers robust mobile integration.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available

Good Noows
This web-based reader has a sleek interface, allowing you to access your feed subscriptions in a unique way.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Google, Facebook or Twitter Account
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available

Scoop.It (in private beta)
This service, (currently available by invite only) allows you to create your personal online newspaper by collecting information from relevant streams of information you follow. Publish this newspaper to your favorite social media or to your blog to share with others.

  • Collaborative
  • Free, but requires Invite, Account & Email
  • Teachers
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

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Task Management Sites

Description: These websites offer services for users to manage their tasks efficiently. Many of these sites have robust notifications and mobile apps to accompany the online experience.

Standards: NETS-S 3, 4, 6

Best Practices: Use these websites to keep yourself on track. These sites would also greatly help students who struggle with organization.

Toodledo
Create robust, sortable to do lists with this program. Organize your lists in a variety of ways. This system also synchronizes well with other third party task management applications.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available 

ToDoist
This simple to use, web-based to do manager helps you easily manage your tasks in many ways, including downloadable apps for your computer or mobile device.

  • Free 
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available 

Remember the Milk
This simple, free website helps you manage your tasks with a variety of services and apps, including iPhone Siri as well as Gmail integration.

  • Free / Premium Subscription ($25 Annual)
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available 

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File Management

Description: If you forget to frequently backup files, and are sick of saving to email, consider creating an account to a File Management service so you can access your files from anywhere. Many of the services allow you to create personal accounts and store a variety of files online. This way you can easily work on projects both at home and at school.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3

Best Practices: Keep all of your active and important files in Dropbox so they are automatically backed up online every time you save them. Use a service like Drop It To Me to have students share documents with you easily.

Dropbox
With Dropbox, you can seamlessly create backups of all your important documents so you will never lose important files again! Download Dropbox software and a folder on your computer will automatically sync online, and with any other computer you setup your dropbox account on. Dropbox also makes accessing documents on mobile devices a breeze.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscription ($99 Annual)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Apps Available

Boxify.me
With Boxify.me, you can easily share files via a customized URL without having to create an account.

  • Collaborative – share files
  • Free 
  • No Account Required
  • LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Drop It To Me
With Drop it To Me, you can set up your Dropbox so that students can use a special password to upload their documents right to your account. Next time you access your files from your desktop, you can see all student files without having to manually download them from an online course system.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Dropbox Account
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

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Citation Sites

Description: Make the research process easier for your students by using these citation resources. No more memorizing formats, just add information to a form

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3, 5

Best Practices: Use these citation tools to teach students about proper research skills.

Bib Me
Easily create automated bibliographies from multiple sources. Search for materials by ISBN or title; no account needed.

  • Free (Forced Video Adds)
  • Account Available but not Needed
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

Noodle Tools (Also Listed in Note-Taking)
With a subscription to this online note-taking and citation service, students can create and share with teachers a project that collects their citations on online notes. Create citations by entering a form.

  • Collaborative
  • Subscription Based
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Zotero (Also Listed in Note-Taking)
This all-in-one note-taking service is especially great for its citation creation feature. Download a Firefox plugin, or separate Zotero application to keep track of all your research and citations.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Downloadable Plugin for Firefox

Citation Machine
Easily create automated bibliographies from multiple sources. Search for materials by ISBN or title; no account needed.

  • Free
  • No Account Needed
  • Teachers / MS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

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Asynchronous Social Web: Microblog / Backchannel / Instant Messaging

Description: With the advent of Mobile devices and Twitter, students need to be skilled in proper ways to share short bursts of information through texting and microblogging. Backchannels allow for online discussions to occur while presentations are going on, allowing for a more robust discussion.  In the appropriate setting, backchannels can be effective learning tools.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3, 5

Best Practices: Have students contribute to a backchannel while watching an instructional video. Students can share their thoughts and take a virtual series of collaborative notes that can be referred to later. (Source: Langwitches Blog).

Today’s Meet
Create a private and secure backchannel, unique to your class or school in case you do not want to have student comments open to the entire Twitterverse.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • No Account Required
  • MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

Twijector
Create a backchannel using a Twitter hashtag. In order for this to work, all users in the backchannel must have a Twitter account.

  • Collaborative
  •  Free
  •  No Account Required / Twitter Account(s) Needed
  •  Teachers / HS Students
  •  Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  •  Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

Meebo
With Meebo you can Instant Message with users with any instant messaging account.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account: Facebook, Google, AOL, or Yahoo
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

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Synchronous Social Web: Video Conferencing

Description: Go beyond the walls of your classroom by letting your students interact with others across the country or world. Use free video conferencing accounts and a computer with a built-in webcam to change your classroom.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 5

Best Practices: Easily get professionals to speak with your class by video conferencing with them. Authors, and subject-area experts are quite familiar with speaking to classes remotely. Also, consider partnering with a class from another country. Learn another language, or about another country, directly from the source.

Skype
The industry-standard of web-based communication, Skype allows for audio-only, or video chat. Create a free account and use a wireless connection to make phone and video calls for free.  Use sites like Skype in the Classroom to find other teachers across the world.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Accounts Available
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available

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Students as Meaningful Contributors

2: Tools for the Product of Learning

Presentation Tools

Description: Break the PowerPoint mold and consider using alternative presentation tools in the classroom. Either implement them yourself as part of your instruction, or have students create these presentations online.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 4, 6

Best Practices: Give students a choice in what presentation they turn in to you. Introduce students to a variety of tools and have them choose the final format.

Prezi
This unique presentation tool allows you to zoom in and out around a large canvas, creating meaning through spatial relation.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Available ($59.00 Annual)
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Capzles
Create multimedia-rich slideshow/timelines with images, video, audio and even downloadable documents.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Glogster EDU
Use this website to create a virtual online poster with moving graphics and embedded video. Create an educator’s account in order to assign projects for your students.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Educator Subscription ($29.95 Annual)
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Vuvox
Create unique interactive Flash-based video widgets incorporating text, images, and video.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3 

Museum Box
Use this unique interface to create a virtual “museum box” of collected online materials, adding text, video, and sound to your project.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account, Email, & School Registration
  • Teachers / MS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Dipity
Create a timeline with detailed notes and embedded multimedia features.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

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Writing Documents

Description: Have students write online to easily work on assignments; no more worries about lost USB drives or problems emailing documents.  Also, with online documents, students can easily collaborate on the same project, or contribute to a large classroom assignment.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 4, 5

Best Practices: asdf

Titan Pad
This web-based word processor that allows for simultaneous collaboration including a section devoted to instant messaging with other users.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • No Account Needed
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Google Docs
A Google Docs account is one of the easiest ways to keep track of documents, particularly if your school has Google Apps for Education. Keep track of your papers and presentations sharing them with others to view, add comments, or collaborate.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Google Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Quiet Write
Use this simple online writer for easily capturing text with minimal distractions through a browser.

  • Free
  • No Account Necessary
  • LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

Raw Scripts
Create film scripts with customized templates using a Google or Yahoo. Perfect for film units.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Google or Yahoo Account
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3 

Entri
Entri is a collaborative tool that lets you share articles before you post them on your blog. Invite others to collaborate, or just keep everything to yourself.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • No Account Necessary / Twitter for Collaboration
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

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Writing Blogs

Description: Blogs are ideal for continually updating content for your audience, meaning they are great for keeping your students up to date with important dates and assignments.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Best Practices: Create a course blog to make students aware of important articles and news stories. Encourage your students to comment on the blog, or have them write articles you can post, or have them create their own blogs. (Source: Moving at the Speed of Creativity Blog, Teachers First)

Posterous
Easily create a classroom blog through Posterous. Create an account with Posterous to create a special email address. Simply write up a blog post in email, then send it to this address to create your blog. Easy!

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available

Edublogs
This community contains blogs written by educators. Create your own edublog for use in the classroom, or just search for interesting blogs to follow.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscriptions (From $3.33 Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Instablogg
Create instant, one post only blogs without an account for quick projects.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • No account needed
  • LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

Tumblr
Bookmark interesting images and articles and add quick comments in this easy-to-use blogging format. Tumblr has a tendency to be more informal and has many Facebook-like social networking features.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Blogger
Easily create a blog using your google account with Google’s Blogger.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Google Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

WordPress.com
Wordpress is a popular software that lets you create both blogs and websites. This service allows you to host your own blog, and offers hosting through WordPress.com.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

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Audio Projects / Podcasting

Description: Have students create podcasts or audio projects in order to easily work with audio. Audio projects are great for auditory learners.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 3, 4

Best Practices: Audio is a relatively easy way to incorporate multimedia in the classroom. Use audio in assessments, for final projects, as well as to collaborate online. (Source: Fry, Wesley. Playing with Media.)

Voicethread
Voicethread is a great collaborative tool that lets students upload pictures and PowerPoint slides, personal commentary to each slide, and invite others to comment through voice, text, or video chat.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium ($15 Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Student Accounts)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

iPadio
Easily record and upload audio from a phonecall online. Register your phone, call a toll-free number and your call can be recorded online.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account, Email & Phone
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

Audioboo
This tool and mobile app allows you to record and share audio with an authentic audience online.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Fotobabble
Create “talking photos” by recording your voice to give more details about images online.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email (or Connect by Facebook)
  • Teachers / LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Cinch FM
This tool and mobile app allows you to record and share audio with an authentic audience online.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email (or Connect by Facebook/Twitter)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

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Screen Sharing

Description: Screen sharing services are ideal for emphasizing key concepts and using specific technology applications. With these incredibly easy-to-use screen casting tools, you can record and upload video in minutes.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Best Practices: In addition to creating your own instructional screencasts, consider using screencasts as a unique learning assessment. Have students create screencasts as final projects. (Source: Technology Without Borders, Screencast-O-Matic)

Screenr
This web-based screen recorder lets you easily record and share video of your screen, incorporating audio from your microphone.

  • Collaborative
  • Free (5 Minutes) / Premium Accounts ($19 Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

Screencast-O-Matic
Create screencasts of your desktop and access them online.

  • Collaborative
  • Free (Stores 1 Video, 15 Minutes Max) / Premium Accounts ($12 yearly)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

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Visualizing Information: Mind-Mapping

Description: Mind-mapping tools allow you to easily create flow-charts, word maps and more. These collaborative resources have interesting features.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3

Best Practices: Have students brainstorm collaboratively by allowing them to individually contribute to a class mindmap.

Popplet
Create online mind-maps by easily dragging and dropping. Invite others to create accounts and contribute to your map.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • iPad App Available 

Wiki Mind Map

Bubbl.us

Mindmeister

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PowerPoint Hosting

Description: Share your PowerPoints online to gain a wider audience and encourage collaboration. Instead of forcing users to download files, online services allow you to upload PowerPoint files and add other features.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 4, 5

Best Practices: Flip your classroom by posting important PowerPoints on your Learning Management System. Have students create PowerPoints and share them with the larger public online using these sites. Embed student PowerPoints on school websites to share your information with an authentic audience.

Present.Me
With this service you can upload your PowerPoint and then record a video presentation to accompany the slides. On the website, your presentation appears on one side of the screen, while your face appears on the other.

  • Collaborative
  • Free 15 min. Limit / Premium Subscriptions ($29 Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

Slideshare
Share your PowerPoint presentations online by uploading them to Slideshare. You can embed Slideshares on other websites, including Learning Management Systems, just like you would with a Youtube video.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscriptions ($19 monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile Accessible 

Empressr
Import PowerPoint files and add unique 3D transitions for an online presentation. Embed these presentations on any website or blog.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

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Website Tours

Description: More than just a collection of links, create a guided tour of web content to provide greater contexts for your students.

Standards: NETS-S 2, 3, 4

Best Practices: Create website tours to introduce units or resources for research units. Also, have your students create guided web tours as the final project for a presentation.

Jog the Web
Create a virtual tour of websites, walking users from one site to another with your notes.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Sqworl
Collect, annotate and organize your online resources in this clean, visual bookmarking site.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Live Binders (Also Listed in Content Creation: Bookmarks)
Collect and organize your online resources in tabbed “binders” for easy sharing and presentation.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

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Making Websites

Description: Let your students share their learning with a wider, authentic audience outside of school by creating a website. Many of these sites now let you easily create a website without extensive coding experience.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 4, 5

Best Practices: Create your own website to curate content for your students, or have them create a website as the end product of a research project.

Google Sites
Use your personal or school Google apps account to easily create and publish websites. Incorporate Google documents easily, and use a What You See is What You Get Editor.

  • Collaborative
  • Free 
  • Requires Google Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Wix
Easily create a Flash-based website using the intuitive drag-and-drop interface.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Jotitt
Easily create a text-based webpage within seconds. No need for HTML, you can format your page with easy text-cues. Collaborative

  • Free
  • No Account Needed
  • LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3 

Wallwisher
Create online noticeboards, populated with text or video, that can be easily reorganized.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Doodlekit
Easily create a hosted website for free, choosing from multiple layouts.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium ($14 Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

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Create a Wiki

Description: Wikis allow you to create websites and then invite students to add content to the pages. Wikis can have various levels of control, but the idea is that students can collaborate together on one document, available on the web for a wider, authentic audience.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 3, 5

Best Practices: Consider these ideas for using wikis in the classroom: Teachers First: Wiki Ideas.

Wikispaces
Create a wiki for your students to allow them to collaborate on research assignments.

  • Collaborative
  • Free for Educators
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / MS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

PB Works – Educational
Another wiki-creation site with a variety of features and pricing options for educators. This website may require a more structured implementation, rather than Wikispaces which allows teachers to create and manage their own accounts.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3 

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Video & Animation Projects

Description: Students can create video or animation projects as unique final products. Video projects require students manage their time well, and be creative.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 4, 6

Best Practices: Consider creating no-edit videos in addition to more complicated video projects. Film and upload video for quick assessments of reading skills or other comprehensions. (Source: Fry, Wesley. Playing with Media.)

WeVideo
Upload and edit video online by creating an account to WeVideo. Easily share your videos with social media services such as Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or Vimeo.

  • Free / Premium Services Available ($4.99 Monthly for 10 GB monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email (or Connect by Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Xtranormal for Education
Create an educational account for Xtranormal and have your students create easy animations by choosing templates and typing in dialog.

  • Free / Premium Accounts ($10.00 + $0.50 per student Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email (or Connect by Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
  • For Teachers / LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Animoto
Create and share feature-rich video slideshows with unique transitions and music.

  • Collaborative
  • Free 30 Second Videos / Premium ($5 Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email (or Connect by Facebook)
  • For Teachers / MS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Zooburst
Create interactive 3-D popup books accessible via augmented reality. The premium teacher’s account allows teachers to manage student accounts.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium ($9.99 Monthly)
  • Requires Account & Email  
  • Teachers / LS Students & Up (Email not needed for Students).
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Accessible on Mobile Devices 

Go Animate
Create animation from animated templates, uploading your own voice or soundtrack.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium ($18.00 for 3 Months)
  • Requires Account & Email 
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

Dvolver
Easily create animated video by choosing from templates, adding text and choosing from specified animated scenarios.

  • Free
  • No Account Required
  • For Teachers / LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3

DoInk
Create flash-based animations from your own drawings.

  • Collaborative
  • Free
  • Requires Account & Email
  • For Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 3 of 3

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Visualizing Information: Infographics

Description:  Infographics are modern equivalents of charts, graphs, and maps in which large data sets are visually represented. It is important for 21st Century students to interact with visual information.

Standards: NETS-S 1, 2, 3, 4

Best Practices: Have your students create infographics as unique final products. Creating these charts requires students to think about good design concepts, as well as their audience. (Source:Infographics as a Creative Assessment) Infographics are also ideal as instructional tools to teach concepts to students. (Source: NYT Learning Blog)

Chartle.net
Create a variety of charts, including interactive charts based on large data sets that you import.

  • Free
  • No Account Required (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / LS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 1 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3

Wordle

Gapminder

Many Eyes

Gliffy

Visualizing.org

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Finding Free Multimedia for Learning Products

Creative Commons Search – Search various sites for copyright-free material

Free Photos

Description: Find free images and clip art from the Creative Commons to enhance your presentations and video projects.

Morgue File
Too lazy to cite your sources? This is the free photo search site for you; search this site for free high resolution digital stock photography and because of the Morgue File’s free license, you don’t have to attribute your sources.

Office.com Images

Flickr Creative Commons

Wylio

World Image Kiosk

Pics 4 Learning

Photos 8

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Free Video

Description: Save online videos to your computer so that you can edit remix them in new educational ways.

Save Youtube
Add the word “save” before “youtube” in a video URL to be taken to Save Youtube, where you can download a video in multiple formats.

Keep Vid

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Free Audio

Description: Find free audio and sound effects to punch up your video and audio projects.

Free Music Archive
Search for music based on genre and curator. Easily download files to your computer.

Freesound.org

Soundbible

Jamendo

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File Conversion

Description: Now that you’ve downloaded a video to your computer, how can you edit it when your editing software requires specific formats? Use these editing tools to convert your file into something you can edit.

Media Converter
Upload your files online, select what you would like the file converted to, and then download.

Zamzar

Youtube to Mp3 Converter

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Instructional Resources

Teacher Managed Learning Management Systems

Description: Key to classroom collaboration is the effective use of Learning Management Systems, or Personal Learning Networks. Learning Management Systems are top-down created learning environments such as Moodle or Blackboard, where students can interact with curricular information as organized by their teachers.

Standards: NETS-T 1, 2, 3, 4

Edmodo
Create a teacher Edmodo account and invite your students to join using a key. As a teacher, control the security settings for your students, fostering collaboration and discussion in a safe environment.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / School & District Accounts Available
  • Requires Account & Email (Email Optional for Students)
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Schoolology
A site similar to Edmodo, with various add-ons and APIs that can expand the experience.

  • Collaborative
  • Free / Premium Subscription for Schools
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / MS Students & Up
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available 

Ning
Create your own social networking site and invite your students to join.

  • Collaborative
  • $24.95 Monthly Fee
  • Requires Account & Email
  • Teachers / HS Students
  • Teacher Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Student Difficulty Scale: 2 of 3
  • Mobile App Available

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Online Courseware / Lesson Plans

Description: Find lesson plans, unit ideas and other great educational resources from these consortiums and social networks.

Standards: NETS-T 2, 4

OER Commons
Find free-to-use, openly licensed teaching and learning content from around the world.

Curriki

Academic Commons

MIT Open Courseware

Teachers First

Open Courseware Consortium

Connexions

Folksemantic

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Flashcard and Study

Description: These online tools recreate the act of creating flashcards, but done digitally. These tools are ideal as study aids for your students.

Standards: NETS-T 2, 4

Quizlet
Create flashcards with your own terms and definitions, or search from a database of flashcards. Share your flashcards with classmates, or assign them to students.

Easy Notecards

Flashcard Machine

Study Blue

Studyboost

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Online Grading

Description: Online gradebooks are ideal for keeping track of your students accounts. Many online grade systems also allow you to easily make these grades public to your students.

Standards: NETS-T 2, 3

Jupiter Grades
Create a free account and keep track of all your grades. With a subscription, share your grading information with students and parents.

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Instructional Video (Flip the Classroom)

Description: More and more teachers are using online video in the classroom because it’s an easy, quick way to illustrate concepts to visual-based learners. Consider embedding videos on Moodle for easy access and organization.

Standards: NETS-T 2, 4

Khan Academy
Flip the classroom with these videos. Augment your instruction with videos of different instructional concepts. (Be sure to watch videos in advance and make sure they align to your instruction.)

Teacher Tube

Tube Chop

Teacher’s Domain

Watch Know Learn

Snag Learning

Next Vista for Learning

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Professional Learning Networks

Description: Many educators are arguing that students and educators should begin moving more towards Personal Learning Networks, through which students take charge of their own learning through existing social networks such as Facebook or Twitter. These resources are a great way for teachers to learn more about their field.

Standards: NETS-T 3, 5

Classroom 2.0
Classroom 2.0 is a free, community-supported network focusing on issues surrounding Web 2.0 and social media.

The Learning Network Blog – NYT

Educational Origami

Shmoop

Educator’s PLN

Edufy (Science)

Edcamp

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Online Textbooks

Description: Consider “remixing” your textbook, choosing free, online resources compiled together for your students. These sites help you collocate resources to make your own textbook, or contribute to free, open-source textbooks created by similar subject-teachers.

Standards: NETS-T 1, 2

CK12 Flexbooks
CK12 Flexbooks is an open content, web-based collaborative model of customizable, standards-aligned K-12 textbooks. Available online, or for Kindle or iPad

Flatworld Knowledge

Wikibooks

Free Books: Project Gutenberg

Librivox

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Creating Online Quizzes

Description: Create unique quizzes and test with these online resources. Online quizzes can automate grading, provide instantaneous feedback and make your job easier.

Standards: NETS-T 2, 4

Flubaroo
Create quizzes from Google Forms and automatically grade them with this system.

Class Marker

Quia

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Instructional Games

Description: Consider using specially designed games to emphasize course concepts. More and more designers are creating free online games created specifically for instruction.

Standards: NETS-T 1, 2, 4

Jeopardy Labs
Create your own online “Jeopardy” game, or choose from already created games.

Class Tools.net

National STEM Video Game Challenge

Games for Change

Epistemic Games

ABC YA

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Finding & Evaluating More Websites

Description: The Internet changes on a daily basis, so it helps to have resources that evaluate new sites. These resources compare existing websites and apps, or list ideal resources.

Catch Free
Compare free online web tools based by skill.

Free Tech 4 Teachers
A variety of free online resources, assessed and updated on a regular basis.

Moving at the Speed of Creativity
Wesley Fryer focuses on a variety of cool new tools as well as effective strategies for incorporating multimedia into the classroom.

Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…
On this blog, the prolific Mr. Ferlazzo creates a variety of lists on any given subject.  Make sure to check out his “Best Web 2.0 Applications” for the cream of the crop.

Make Use Of: “Cool Websites & Tools” Series

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