15 December 2009

0 What is all the Hype about Skype?

Webcamming and Skype are not new to the video conferencing world. Skype (as well as dimdim, iChat, oovoo, uStream) allow the user to make calls via the web to just about anyone. All that is really needed is a webcam, setting up an account and possibly downloading the program. Our district just recently unblocked Skype allowing us to move forward and spread the word to our teachers!

So…What exactly is Skype?
Skype is a free application that allows users to make free audio and video calls through their internet connection. Skype allows you to use your dial-up or broadband connection to make free calls over the internet. You can use Skype to connect with one person or a group. Additionally, the “free features” include instant messaging and group IMs, and conferences and video calls.

Why Use Skype in the Classroom?
Teachers are using Skype to connect their students with classrooms on the other side of the world or maybe just down the road, to collaborate on projects and to share materials.

“Skype opens the door to a wide range of activities that can improve student engagement and comprehension. Interacting with people from other states, countries, and continents helps students understand cultural differences, learn about history and social norms, and fine-tune foreign language skills.

Learning becomes increasingly authentic as it expands beyond the walls of the classroom, and being able to have a phone call or a video chat with someone on the other side of the world can make learning come alive. An inexpensive, widely accessible tool like Skype also encourages faculty and students to experiment with new techniques to facilitate engagement……” http://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/ELI7032.pdf
Check out this post by Silvia Tolisano. She outlines not only how she has used Skype but why Skype is such a great resource for teachers.

Possible Ideas to Use Skype in the Classroom
The possibilities are endless on ways to use Skype in the Classroom. Here are just a few:
  • During Read Across America – Share reading to another class in another county or state.
  • Connect to pen pals (epals)
  • Learn about geography from students living in an area you are studying
  • Learn about another culture by connecting students to a classroom from that culture
  • Collaborate with another class on a joint research project
  • Help students hear native speakers when learning a foreign language
  • Connect with a teacher buddy in another state or town
  • Connect with student’s grandparents during Grandparent’s Day
  • Connect with a student in your class who may be out for an extended period of time.
  • Conduct interviews (Q&A’s with authors, artists, meteorologists, veterans, mathematicians, scientists, etc).
  • Connect with lower or higher grade levels and have students present mini-teaches.
Please visit my delicious bookmark for more resources about Skype.

06 October 2009

0 Tagal - Interactive Word/Tag Cloud

I came across Tagul in my Google Reader and decided to give it a try. It was created by "Alex", 27 years old entrepreneur and tech geek from Moscow, Russia. It is a web based program designed to be used on blogs, web pages or any kind of sites as a replacement of ordinary tag clouds. Each tag in the Tagul cloud is linked with an URL and is “clickable” that enables visitors to use it for navigation. I created one for my Dovewhisper Computer Centers and had the "tag links" point to my Dovewhisper site instead of Google search. Pretty cool...huh?

28 September 2009

0 Fall Technology Staff Developments

GoAnimate.com: Fall Technology Professional Development by Dovewhisper

Like it? Create your own at GoAnimate.com. It's free and fun!

08 September 2009

0 TerraClues: The ULTIMATE Google Maps Scavenger hunt game!

TerraClues - the ULTIMATE Google Maps scavenger hunt game!

"TerraClues for Schools is an easy to use tool where teachers can create interactive “scavenger hunts” with Google maps. Teachers can access hundreds of already made TerraClues to use in conjunction with curriculum or create their own TerraClues to fit their classroom needs. Teachers can also create private classrooms where they assign students to specific hunts.
TerraClues hunts can also be shared with other teachers in your school, district, or anywhere in the world. This is a fun way to learn about using maps, curriculum content, and how to navigate the Internet. This site encourages students to learn and implement problem solving skills and learn about different cultures around the world." source

11 August 2009

1 Custom Handwriting Template Creator

I came across this site from one of the blogs I am following. The site, IDEAS has created an easy to use application designed especially for students who are working on their penmanship skills.

This online program allows you to create customized print, cursive, D’Nealian print, or D’Nealian cursive worksheets. All you do is type in the text you want your students to practice, click on the generate button and view the practice sheet in a pdf.

~Customized to your specifications~ How cool is that!

16 July 2009

5 Phenomenal Clip Art Site!

This clip art site by Philip Martin is phenomenal. What a talented artist and the clip art is so cute and best of all the clip art is FREE!

The site is categorized by topics. Click on the topic of choice then click on the thumbnail for a larger view. To save the image, right click>click Save Picture As and save it to your files.

He also teamed up with the people of Mr. Donn's. org, (another FABULOUS site) and illustrated the pages of PPPST.COM. If you want to find PowerPoint presentations on just about any subject, PPPST.COM is the place to go. And, just like with the clip art site, it is completely FREE!


07 July 2009

4 Online Personal Signature Maker

Well, this is a neat little toy. Donita shared this, My Live Signature, and I wanted to share it in case you did not get a chance to visit her blog. My Live Signature is a free online personal signature maker.

It is easy to to use! You can create a signature using their wizard, drawing your signature, or using a scanned image. I used their wizard and once you type in the signature, you will have the opportunity to select from 110 font styles!! From there, you specify the font size, color, and slope for signature. Once created, click on the "What to use this signature?" then click on Generate HTML and add it to your blog post!

Here is my signature. (I think the colored background made it kinda of fuzzy looking.)

29 June 2009

1 Jing - Add Visuals to Your Online Conversation

What is Jing? Jing is a free download application that allows you to take quick screenshots or still pictures of anything on your desktop computer. You can also take screencasts with audio, and then share both your screenshots and screencasts with the world.

Download it today and begin "playing" with this fabulous and useful Web 2.0 tool! Click here to read more about this application!

19 June 2009

0 Visuwords

"A visual dictionary, Visuwords shows a graphical representation of words and word relationships. Students can view word meanings and associations. Search for any word and immediately get word connections, find out which words are similar, an instance of, a substance of, a part of, a member of, a verb group, an opposite, a causes, entails, and offers suggestions for other words to see. Parts of speech are color coordinated so students can tell at a glance which part of speech the word is. When students hover the mouse over a word the definition pops up on the word." http://ilearntechnology.com/default

Check it out!!!!

30 May 2009

6 Word Mosaic

Word Mosaic

Like Wordle, the mosaic tool found on imagechef.com allows one to generate words in a specific shape or initials, color and font. The possibilities are limitless with this application!

06 May 2009

0 Summer Book Study Blurb!

GoAnimate.com: Books Study: Blogs, Wikis, and Podcasting by Dovewhisper

Like it? Create your own at GoAnimate.com. It's free and fun!

23 April 2009

2 GoAnimate

This fun site "GoAnimate" that was introduced to me by one of my book study participants. I created an "Info commerical" for our Technology Summer Workshops. Hope you like it!

GoAnimate.com: Technology Summer Workshops by Dovewhisper

Like it? Create your own at GoAnimate.com. It's free and fun!

08 April 2009

0 Adding a RSS Gadget to Blogger

01 April 2009

1 Voki.com

Visit Voki.com

Also check out this link on classroom applications using a Voki.

24 February 2009

1 Jeopardy Lab This is...not Powerpoint

I came across this site, JeopardyLabs. It allows you to create a customized jeopardy game template without using PowerPoint. The games you create may then be played online from anywhere in the world. They have a simple editor to assist in building your own jeopardy template too. If you are not interested in building your own, you can check out the templates created by other folks. Best of all it's Free, no registration, and no PowerPoint needed!

05 January 2009

0 SlideShare

What is SlideShare?
SlideShare is the world's largest community for sharing presentations.

  • Individuals & organizations upload presentations to share their ideas, connect with others, and generate leads for their businesses.
  • Anyone can find presentations on topics that interest them. They can tag, download, or embed presentations into their own blogs & websites.
SlideShare is the best way to get your slides out there on the web, so your ideas can be found and shared by a wide audience. Do you want to get the word out about your product or service? Do you want your slides to reach people who could not make it to your talk? Are you a teacher looking to share your lesson plans? It only takes a moment - start uploading now, and let your slides do the talking!
Some of the things you can do on SlideShare:

  • Embed slideshows into your own blog or website.
  • Share slideshows publicly or privately. There are several ways to share privately.
  • Synch audio to your slides.
  • Join groups to connect with SlideShare members who share your interests
  • Download the original file
For example: Type in the word "podcasting" in the search feature and you will locate dozens of ready-made presentations. See some of the examples below found on SlideShare!