Tech Tuesday

Finds and Thoughts about Tech Integration

Favorite Tool

March23

Last month, I read a post by a member of my PLN, Kyle Pace, on web productivity tools and trying to keep up with them. I enjoyed reading his honest reflection that he sometimes does not get beyond signing up for a tool because there are just so many out there. Even technology specialists find it all a bit overwhelming! How does one decide which tool is the best to use? It really is all subjective. The question is: does a tool that everyone is talking about meet your and/or your students’ needs?

Of course, the best way to find out is to give the tool a try. With all of the demands put on teachers, it can be very difficult to dedicate precious time to something new because usually it takes us twice as long the first outing. Sometimes, unfortunately, the tool is not a good match. That can be very discouraging. Perhaps, it makes us think twice before trying something else. Just remember: it’s a part of the learning process.

Dan McGuire, a member of my PLN, submitted a comment on another one of Kyle Pace’s posts that ‘The word educate comes from a Latin phrase that means “bring out from;” it doesn’t mean maintain the status quo or valiantly hang on to the way things were. If we’re not leading our students out of the past, we’re not educating them.’ His point makes me want to get over that initial hump with a tool and see what it can do for my teachers and students.

I’m wondering- is there a tool that you and/or your students have worked with and reaped its benefits? A tool that could be deemed your favorite?

If you couldn’t tell, my tool is Twitter. I have made so many connections with educators that I have not even met in person. Yet, they have shared resources and influenced my practices immensely through daily tweets and following links to blogs. I even have joined a blogging alliance created by educator and PLN member Kelly Tenkely. To date, I have set up several collaborations through this network. And if you read my inaugural post, you know my relationship with Twitter was not “love at first sight”.

In the spirit of this blog, please share. 🙂

6 Comments to

“Favorite Tool”

  1. March 23rd, 2010 at 7:54 am       Patti Says:

    I recently used a Web tool, Meeting Manager, to find times that were mutually convenient to schedule a meeting. This tool saves time because there is no going back and forth with alternate meeting times. I also used it when trying to schedule a family get together.So professionally and personally this Web tool has been a great resource for me, Hope you try it!

    Patti


  2. March 23rd, 2010 at 8:52 am       Suzanne Whitlow Says:

    My district uses Macs at the Elementary level, and we have some great software. I believe that Keynote is my favorite, because even primary age students can drag words, type words to finish a sentence, delete the wrong picture etc., and then have a multi-media presentation to watch when finished. Upper students format the transitions, builds and even voice over to complete the really cool presentations.


  3. March 23rd, 2010 at 2:45 pm       ktenkely Says:

    I have the problem of picking a favorite. I fall in love with them easily! My problem is not having enough hours with students to use them all. I can come up with great uses all day long, wish I could manufacture more time! I have to be picky and what usually sticks are those tools that my students fall in love with as well. Currently standing out in my mind for elementary students is Shidonni (www2.shidonni.com) There is so much creativity that happens when students use it!


  4. March 25th, 2010 at 7:55 pm       Nicholas Provenzano Says:

    Picking a favorite is very tough. The two that I’m using most would have to be Wallwisher and Prezi. My kids love using Prezi and it has changed their work in my class and other classes. Wallwisher os fun because it allows students to give instant feedback during presentations.


  5. March 26th, 2010 at 11:05 am       lsanderson Says:

    Thanks, guys! I now have some new things to check out! 🙂


  6. April 3rd, 2010 at 6:07 am       Pam Thompson Says:

    I can so identify with your comment in finding great tools but then not having time to use them. I feel like a magpie sometimes. I excitedly bookmark so many new web2.0 tools with great intentions of using them, but then find that it gets so frantic in the class that we don’t seem to have time to “play” with these new tools.

    As for my favourites, twitter has to be up there, as I’ve learned so much from my network on there. I also regularly use feedly as my blog reader. Without feedly I just wouldn’t read as many blogs as I do.

    My students really like having their blogs on edublogs, and they also love using glogster to present their learning. I’m still intending to have a go at using Voicethread – but I’ve been saying that for a wile now 🙂


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