A few Web 2.0 Tools for the Classroom

 

A few new Web 2.0 tools which I have come across  which could be of great use in the classroom.

  1. Highlighter App

This simple app can be downloaded from the Chrome Store or the Apple store depending on which device you are using. There is many variations to this app but each have the simple understanding that when you are online or using a device you like to highlight key points or ideas which catch your attention as you are reading. Price depends on what you are looking for; however in general it seems to be free to download and use.

 

2. Second Life

I came across Second Life by chance. However, so far I have been very impressed by it’s concept and ideas. It allows people to create a free 3D virtual world.

When teaching history, it’s important to try and use visuals in the classroom. For example, when teaching the Romans, minecraft has a huge selection of visuals which can be used when teaching about the Roman villa or domus.

However, allowing students to create their own Roman Villa or Domus – or even Roman town would bring topics alive for students. Additionally, this will allow students to bring history alive and into the twenty-first century through this Web 2.0 tool.

3. Answer Garden

Answer Garden is a web 2.0 tool which I have yet to use – yet I have heard very positive things about it from those I know who have used it in a classroom setting.

Answer Garden allows for a teacher or student to a put a question in and press the submit button. The most frequent answers are shown. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Christmas – Animoto style

A web 2.0 educational resource I have yet to delve into yet (plans for the weekend is to curl up with a cup of strong coffee and delve into all these educational resources!) is Animoto!

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What is Animoto?

Animoto is a cloud-based video creation service that produces video from photos, video clips, and music into video slideshows. Animoto is based in New York City with an office in San Francisco. (All credit for TNW

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Sometimes it’s easier to demonstrate something that try and explain it thus keeping with the Christmas Theme let me show you an example of Animoto in action!

 

Want to know more?

http://thenextweb.com/insider/2013/01/14/animoto-celebrates-its-fifth-birthday-with-six-million-users-and-new-i-love-ny-video-style/. This article ran a great article on Animoto fifth birthday which summarised all the questions you may have about animoto!

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Web 2.0

What is web 2.0?

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Recently, I have been blogging and updating this blog press but I feel I may have lost track as to what is Web 2.o tools and how are they relevant to education?

Thus I am going to back to basics and going to see which Web 2.0 tools I have been using and how are the beneficial to education!


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Why are we using Web 2.0 in regards to a classroom setting?

Web 2.0 tools allows us to communicate with our students and encourages collaborative learning.

We can share and create new knowledge and information with students.


 

What are Web 2.0 tools I may already know and use without realising?

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Many educators use Web 2.0 tools without realising what they are. You are probably already using many Web 2.0 tools in the classroom already. For example – facebook, youtube, RSS feeds, Yahoo, Twitter, Reddit, Goggle, Skype, Flickr, Wordle, slideshare, etc. etc.

The list is never ending and exhausting! Which is great as an educator that you have so much choice and freedom to choose what suits you, your teaching style and method and your classes.


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One point which I feel must be made in regards to many Web 2.0 tools is that they are free for the majority! Yes you can upgrade for a fee but overall most Web 2.o tools are free and easy to use!

Even looking at the above ‘eco-system of Web 2.0 tools’ you can recognise the top Web 2.o Tools – how do they make their money – Advertisements!  Thus I do recommended if you are using your own laptop in the school – install ad blocker! (https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/adblock/gighmmpiobklfepjocnamgkkbiglidom?hl=en)


 

What leg does Web 2.0 have in a classroom? Why should we use Web 2.0 tools in the classroom?

This is a question that is constant considering the reports from the recent OCED report and Digital Strategy Scheme in Ireland. However, there has been a huge amount of academic journals published in regards to using Web 2.0 in the classroom!

These articles were picked by myself and fellow MA students in regards to looking at the varying opinions and verdicts of Web 2.0 Tools in Education!

  1. Bennett, Sue and others, Implementing Web 2.0 Technologies in Higher Education: A Collective Case Study, 59 vols (2012) <http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=75168473&site=ehost-live>
  2. Boyd, Patricia, ‘Blogging in the Classroom: Using Technologies to Promote Learner-Centered Pedagogies’, Researcher: An Interdisciplinary Journal, 26 (2013), 85-113 <http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=94391334&site=ehost-live>
  3. Byrne, Richard, ‘The Effect of Web 2.0 on Teaching and Learning’, Teacher Librarian. Dec. 2009, Vol. 37 Issue 2, p50-53.<http://web.a.ebscohost.com.dcu.idm.oclc.org/ehost/detail/detail?sid=3b3da761-ddfd-4941-8351-c5130bc51e71%40sessionmgr4005&vid=0&hid=4114&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#AN=47500195&db=a9h>
  4. Capo, Berta Hayes, Orellana, Anymir, ‘Web 2.0 Technologies for Classroom Instruction: High School Teachers’ Perceptions and Adoption Factors’, Quarterly Review of Distance Education. Winter 2011, Vol. 12 Issue 4, p235-253<http://web.a.ebscohost.com.dcu.idm.oclc.org/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=5b9cd87b-71d7-4433-86aa-b24761415072%40sessionmgr4002&vid=0&hid=4114>#
  5. Ebner, Martin, Andreas Holzinger, and Hermann Maurer. “Web 2.0 technology: future interfaces for technology enhanced learning?.” Universal Access in Human-Computer Interaction. Applications and Services. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, (2007), 559-568. <http://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-540-73283-9_62>
  6. Killingsworth, E. ‘Use of technology in Classroom Testing.Nurse Educator,  (2015) Ktsis, Stacy M, “The Facebook Generation: Homework as Social Networking”, The English Journal 98 (2008), 30–36. <http://goo.gl/wXBBjo>
  7. Koh, Caroline, ‘Exploring the use of Web 2.0 Technology to Promote Moral and Psychosocial Development: Can You Tube Work?’, British Journal of Educational Technology,45 (2014), 619-635 <http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ofm&AN=96558443&site=ehost-live>
  8. Kovalik, Cindy and others, ‘Implementing Web 2.0 Tools in the Classroom: Four Teachers’ Accounts’, TechTrends: Linking Research & Practice to Improve Learning, 58 (2014), 90-94 <http://search.ebscohost.com.dcu.idm.oclc.org/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=97503703&site=ehost-live>
  9. Luther, Frances D. and Justin Pickering, ‘Using Web 2.0 Learning Environments to Address Diversity: A Diversity-Education Example’, Delta Kappa Gamma Bulletin, 81 (2015), 28-34 <http://search.ebscohost.com.dcu.idm.oclc.org/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=101823315&site=ehost-live>
  10. Newland, Barbara and Linda Byles, ‘Changing Academic Teaching with Web 2.0 Technologies’, Innovations in Education & Teaching International, 51 (2014), 315-325 <http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=95304671&site=ehost-live>

 

21classes

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Just finished a presentation on 21classes this week!

Will post our reaction and overall impression of 21classes!

For those curious what 21classes is and the suspense of an updated post is too much. Please feel free to check out the website: https://www.21classes.com/


Recently we were asked to do a presentation on the web 2.0 technology platform 21classes.com.

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Though over 40,000 users are using 21classes (which a huge percentile being for educational purposes) overall the research from our group and using of 21classes has prompted us to think it may be a good blogging platform but there is better out there.


 

That being said there were positives to 21classes.

  • One of the main reasons why people would use 21classes had to be the privacy settings and spam protection which is ideal.
  • Additionally, another huge benefit of 21classes is that your students do not need an email account to sign up. However, these features only become apparent after you have paid the monthly fee. Though it is a small amount at 8.95 a month per class and 33.98 for unlimited amount to one teacher – it does have huge drawbacks.

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  • From researching active 21classes blogs I noticed that I could access student’s works which was a huge benefit if I was a relative or friend who wanted to see what they are doing in class. Also, it would be a reflective way for students to engage with each other and possibly motivate students as to how much work they need to do.
  • Drawback as students can see each other’s work – which could lead to plagiarism – which would be distressing to students who put a huge amount of work into their work and will lose confidence if they feel their own work will not be private and at the scrutiny of their peers.
  • However, one huge benefit of 21classes for the students is that they can upload and personalise the 21classes page to their own liking. Though this is a great feature – this feature is available on other blogs and is more accessible to do.
  • Following the slides below you can see how difficult was to upload. If you have the time and resources 21classes was good.
  • Though 21classes says they offer a blogging community run and controlled by a teacher students can still change the security settings without the teacher noticing which we thought was a huge drawback.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mental Health Week

While in class today – I was trying to encourage Mental Health Week and positivity in the Classroom through simple ideas.

One such idea was simply asking students to rate their homework and then simply giving themselves a smiley face or a love heart beside their work and a huge tick on the margin of their copies for trying their best .  The idea worked well as the students responded very positively to the small change in the usual homework feedback.

However, the students shocked reactions and enthusiasm  to this simple tasks makes me wonder when correcting homework are we so focused on the answers and responses that we fail to see the amount of work that they put into the homework?

The students response to the positive feedback has sparked my interest in regards to what are the implications of positive feedback on homework. What have scholars said?

I’m hoping to research this throughout the week and update by the end of the week. Mini research project!

If anyone has ideas or thoughts on the topic or wants to add to please do!


Update currently trawling through peer reviewed journals and shocked by the amount of research and varying opinions!

Can’t wait to share these findings and research!


Funny mistakes

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On the topic of mistakes – here are some funny answers students have given when they did not know the answers to questions. All credit goes to https://goo.gl/MfBvgR. (Askreddit)

I taught history and showed a video clip of Ronald Reagan’s famous “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” In a later quiz I asked students to write down this quote with my favorite response starting “Mr. Gooberchuck…”

I had a student who would write things like “I don’t remember this, I’m sorry, but I drew you a picture of a dog instead”. Or “please don’t think that my wrong answer on this question means you’re a bad teacher, you’re awesome but I didn’t study”.

When my wife and I were TA’s in grad school, we proctored and then graded an essay exam. We had a student write, “I don’t know, so here’s a picture of a puppy”. He then drew a beautiful picture of a puppy, it took him nearly an hour to complete it. To this day when I ask my wife a question and she doesn’t know the answer, she just says, “puppy”.

In high school I was in a biology class with a buddy of mine. The class and the teacher were a complete joke and no one took it seriously. On an exam the teacher wanted an essay on something, and my buddy didn’t feel like writing it. Instead he drew a picture of Jesus and wrote “Jesus is always the answer” above it. He received full credit.