Tech Toolkit:     Clicking ~ Commenting ~ Conversing ~ Creating ~ Connecting

How do you get students making their own online content?

IMG_7808Strategy #1: Helping Students Publish – Even if students don’t have a lot of technological expertise, you can help them create online content by taking pictures of their work, uploading their videos to YouTube, or publishing their writing on a blog. I even made a special website for showing off student work related to our world religion unit. If you are intimidated by video, challenge your students to try it, and see what they come up with (see video below).

Tools to Look Like a Pro:

  • Wikispaces – an easy way to publish a webpage, allowing multiple users to add content
  • BoomWriter – This free service helps kids write their own books, alone or collaboratively — and for a fee, they’ll even print you a paper copy to keep!
  • Prezi – Helps organize thoughts into attractive online presentations, much more engaging than PowerPoint!

Group WorkStrategy #2: Model Tech Options  Some people say that kids are great with technology. Really, they have a lot of comfort with technology, but they still need to be taught skills and tools, just like adults. However, if given room to be creative and introduced to new tools, you’ll be surprised at what they can do.

Tools to Look like a Pro:

  • Glogster – Helps students make online posters with interesting graphics and even video content embedded.
  • GoAnimate – Students can make cartoon videos with very little skill.
  • ComicMaster – Create your own Graphic Novel / Cartoon StripScreen Shot 2013-07-30 at 9.45.10 AM

Strategy #3: Allow Choice – Google offers employees 20% of their time to explore their passions. If students had the same space for open creativity, what would our schools look like?  I have been exploring more and more ways to allow students to choose. Some of my favorites have been the Global Citizenship Projects and Global Giving Projects.

Tools to Look like a Pro:

  • KidBlog and Edublogs are both set up for teachers to support student blogging.
  • Google Docs – Online word processing allows for several people to collaborate on a document, brainstorm projects, and more! Students can use it to share ideas with each other and with the teacher.
  • Doctopus – Want to be able to track student progress as they work? This Google Doc add-on has been instrumental for me to check in with student progress as students write. Watch the video to learn about what it does and how to set it up.

Move on to see the last step, Connecting.

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