Since it is President’s Day, we as educators have to focus on what accomplishments many Presidents’ have achieved. There are several ways to use Web 2.0 tools to bring these President’s to life. This thought crossed my mind when I asked my son this morning what his school day would be like for President’s Day. He spoke of creating a report on George Washington, by reading a book about him and then writing a report. With only being a second grader, I wondered how much of this learning will be retained?
There are so many tools available, which one to add to make this assignment exciting. Here are my top sites and they have been reliable!
Wouldn’t it be a learning experience to bring in images of George Washington from Discovery Education into a Glogster? He would have to type limited key information about him, then add a segmented video to prove his information and add links to websites . He would be able to design, create and think out of the box to make his point of why he was a great president from anywhere. This would be a poster creation in an interactive learning environment, which can be edited as needed, then published. It shows pride when student’s are able to publish their work for all to see.
Another idea is using Prezi as an alternative to PowerPoint. Students get excited about objects moving across the page. So, instead of a slide transition, the information darts from place to place. With student access to Discovery Education, they would be able to research and view videos to learn even more beyond the classroom. The students would need to make sure the information is readable, timing is key and the information is clear. The availability of Web 2.0 tools, the students would have access 24/7, and not have to “work” on their project entirely at school.
Students could create a wiki using Wikispaces or PBWorks. They are both user friendly for posting information collaboratively as a webpage. This could be the student’s or groups portfolio with all research information. The teacher can still have guidelines on how many pages or each page with a particular title but the student has creative range to what material is added. Wikis are open to adding text, documents, videos and images. This is a great way to teach organization, posting information that is clear, and copyright rules. If you have never had an wiki account, make sure that you are under the K-12 umbrella, more protection for students. Nice feature.
Many of you have used these tools before, but keep it simple with still teach valuable content in a creative 21st century student way. I chose these three for their value in education and they are some of the best tools for integration in the classroom, plus they are free. Teachers have enjoyed all of these tools as well, but bring the students in and see what they show you!