Lesson 3: Which Web 2.0 Tools Should I Use?

There are many different web 2.0 tools, and more being created every day. However, there are certain types of projects that web 2.0 tools do well, and of course there is no one tool that is best. Some project ideas include digital storytelling, problem based learning (PBL), and creating video.

Read

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1) Digital Storytelling

Digital storytelling is a great way to encourage students to be creative with their work, and it’s lots of fun! But wait – don’t you need special computer skills to do this kind of thing with students? Nope, it’s actually really easy to get started if you remember that digital storytelling simply means creating stories – of any kind – digitally! It can be a simple as creating a slide show that tells a story, or something more interactive created with free, easy to use software like Scratch.

Digital storytelling can be integrated into nearly any content area, and encompasses things like problem based learning and technology integration while encouraging deep learning and student engagement with the material they are learning. Digital storytelling can also be used as a way for students to teach other students, a highly engaging activity for learners.

While digital storytelling is a wide concept that includes various different types of projects, it is not hard to learn more about teaching digital storytelling.
Examples:

Tools:

2) Problem Based Learning

Web 2.0 tools are a natural fit for problem based learning (PBL), because they are designed to encourage collaboration, creation, and sharing. PBL can help students develop problem solving skills, develop self directed learning skills, become effective collaborators, and become intrinsically motivated to learn.

Examples:

Tools:

  • Glogster – interactive posters using video, music, and documents
  • VoiceThread – images, documents, and videos
  • Wordle – vocabulary cloud
  • Edublogs – education blogs for teachers, students and institutions
  • Kerpoof Studio – pictures, movies, and drawing
  • Wikispaces – Wikis for everyone

3) Video and Learning

Video can be a powerful tool in education, whether you are using videos you’ve created yourself or videos that can be found on free sites such as Youtube, TeacherTube, or WatchKnowLearn.

Examples:

Tools:

  • Stupeflix – Mix photos, video and music in seconds
  • Flixtime – Make a 60-second video
  • Screencast-O-Matic – One-click recording from your browser
  • Animoto – Turn your photos and music into video slideshows
  • The Khan Academy – Learn almost anything for free
  • Neok12 – Educational Videos and Games for Kids about Science, Math, Social Studies and English
  • Stem4Girls – Introduces teen girls to science, technology, mathematics, and engineering in an excitingly new way
  • EducationalMiniMovies – Free educational movies & videos online for a wide range of subjects
  • BrainPOP – Animated Educational Site for Kids
  • TheWildClassroom – EcoGeeks Video Podcasting
  • Is All About Math – Math Video Podcast Lectures
  • BookWink – Book review video podcasts

Do

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1) Brainstorm project ideas

Choose whether you want to create an assessment for your own students utilizing any of the tools we’ve discussed, or if you want to develop a project like the ones you read about above that can be used as a teaching tool in your classroom. Begin to brainstorm tools and projects that are appropriate for your respective content areas. Discuss your ideas with colleagues, especially if you are developing a project you would like other teachers to use.

2) Post your project

Write a justification of the project you’ve chosen, including an explanation of the tool you’re going to use and which level of Bloom’s taxonomy will be addressed, as well as the specific content involved. If you would like to share your ideas, post the justification and description of your project in the website you created in lesson 1. 

Optional: Create the project, based on your written description, and post a link to it in the website you created in lesson 1.