I have to admit that it’s been a busy week and I haven’t spent as much time as usual on this week’s topic.
Some of these tools are used quite successfully in school – Glogster, ToonDoo, Wordle – with a variety of classes from LOTE to VCE Health. Wordle is often used to start a new topic and/or revise a topic and teachers loved the idea of a ‘tag cloud with style’ which is how Tagxedo promotes itself. I tried putting in my own image (the school logo) but it doesn’t come out very well because of the design. The soccer ball is quite popular at the moment in German classes due to the World Cup and I’ve seen many students sharing their images – all in German of course!
ToonDoo has been used in Year 7 English as an extension activity for those who have finished their novel report. They get to put together a little animation (3 slides) explaining an aspect of the novel. It’s also great to engage a few reluctant students into producing work. Our VCE Health teacher liked the idea of using VoiceThread with her class when revising topics as well. Her classroom walls are full of ‘visual reminders’ regarding the various health topics they are studying. She thinks this would be great to use with them and also for them to be able to share with each other.
I’m presently using Wikispaces for Educators to create an ‘eLearning-MESC’ wiki highlighting many of the online tools that we have used in this program. It is very much a ‘work in progress’ at the moment and of course I am editing and adding to it all the time at the moment. It’s been a great way for me to learn about wikis and how they can be used, as well as get a few other staff involved in setting up their own. The Echuca College eLearning wiki showcased on Bright Ideas recently was certainly a catalyst for me in getting this one started as well – so thank you to them.
I’m going to explore issuu further as I think this would be a great ‘online school brochure’ to put on (or link – will need to investigate further) our website – looks alot better than a pdf document for sure! Some other staff are also interested in using it as a way of presenting their TPL Project instead of a ‘written report’ – will see how they go with this too.
Storybird would be great not only at school with some of our Year 7 reading classes, but also at home with children on a rainy day. I’m going to pass this one on to family and friends I know with younger children and I’ll try it out next time I’m babysitting my 4 year old niece who loves it when we make up our own stories.
Why ‘5 and a half’ – well I had to tell someone (everyone) about what a great week I’ve had – oh and what went wrong!
Firstly I got inspired by the ‘Echuca E-Learning Wiki’ as showcased in Bright Ideas last week and thought it was about time I made one for myself. I wanted to do something similar and incorporate all the links and resources that we have been using in this PLN, as well as others that I have been storing in ‘delicious‘, and share them with our staff. So I thought if ‘wiki’ means ‘quick’ in Hawaiian then how hard could it be! Well a few hours later and I now have my own wiki ‘eLearning-MESC’ well on it’s way – I’ll give you a sneak preview here as long as you promise to pass on comments both for and against – thank you.
Next it was on to helping a TPL group of staff set up their own ‘Ning’ for the work they are doing on ‘E5 – Engage’ – sorry can’t show you that one but they are very happy with it – let’s just hope that the fees Ning are about to charge doesn’t affect them. If not maybe we can change them to a wiki – if it’s quicki!!
Then all the work on ‘Digital Citizenship’ last week was fresh in my mind as I discovered yesterday that we are one of the pilot schools for the ‘Alannah and Madeleine Cybersafety and Wellbeing Initiative’ and we have a committee which I have put my hand up for – thank you Judith and fellow PLN-ers for all your links and resources.
Today I ran my fortnightly lunchtime ‘ICTuesday’ session and it was a WET one – Wallwisher, Essaymap, Tagxedo – about 30 minutes of fun as we played with these mindmap/brainstorm/revision tools and talked about how the teachers would use them in their health, LOTE, ESL classes.
So what went wrong – well does anyone use Edublogs? I’ve been trying to embed a video clip into posts for my other blog ‘Library Lynn’ over the past two weeks and it doesn’t appear to work anymore – Penny kindly tried to help me out late last Friday night (thanks again Penny) but still not happening. The code shows in the ‘HTML’ screen and the image shows in the ‘Visual’ screen, but as soon as I ‘save to draft’ or ‘publish’ it disappears! I have done this quite successfully in the past so am not sure what is going on – any clues welcome. It does work in this blog though and the difference is that this is via ‘globalteacher’ – maybe I need to close/move my other blog.
So it’s on to Week 6 of the PLN and more ‘Learning and Teaching Tools’ – bring it on I say!