A useful tool if you don’t know it already is a URL shortener – this takes a web address and shortens it for ease of use.
Here are a few sites that do this job:
- Copy your original web page link (the URL)
- Paste into the box on one of the above sites and click on the button to create a shortened URL
- Copy and use your shortened URL
This is particularly useful if you start using other web 2.0 tools such as Padlet – which will feature in the next post – as the web addresses are formed of a long series of numbers and letters which are hard to type in and easy to get wrong!
Shortened URLs are common on Twitter, where the number of characters is limited.
RECOMMENDED USES OF SHORTENED URLS:
- In class to guide students quickly to a site
- For parents to help with homework or particular pages of the school website
- To email links, particularly web 2.0 pages with long alpha-numerical addresses
WHAT IS WEB 2.0?:
It wasn’t that long ago that I had to look up what web 2.0 meant. Another term that has crept into the educational world often without basic explanation.
Simply put, web 2.0 refers to the interactivity that is now available online through apps such as Facebook. The 2.0 part relates to the evolution of the internet from web 1.0 where pages were read-only to web 2.0 where we can now interact.
So, web 2.0 tools in education are sites or apps that you can use with your class (you don’t have to be a 1:1 tablet school). There are 1000s out there, both paid and free. Many of the free ones are fine for long term use, others are a good way to try out what they do before you decide to buy. We’ll be showing some of the freely available web 2.0 tools.
Since finding out what it meant, I’ve looked at many engaging web 2.0 tools. Some of you may be using them already – and we’d love to hear from you (please use the comments box below), and many of you may not have tried them.
We hope to encourage a bit of exploration of these free tools , and suggest that you start with just one – hopefully over the coming weeks, there will be one that sparks your interest! Including ideas for classrooms that have one Interactive white board as well as classrooms that are 1:1 with a mobile device such as a Chromebook or iPad – and those in between!