Posts Tagged internet

Wallwisher in the Classroom

I started to title this blog post – A New Way to Brainstorm – but then I realized that Wall Wisher offers so much more than that.

Wallwisher is a free internet application that allows you to build a wall that then you or you and others can post notes on.   To build a wall you will need to log in with an email account but an email account is not needed to post notes on that wall.  Good news for those of us working with students under the age of 14.    Privacy levels can be set for each wall and posts can be moderated.

Once a wall is built there are a number of ways to distribute or share your wall.  Walls can be embedded into a webpage, blog or wiki.  You can link directly to the wall for users to go straight there.  It also provides an RSS feed so walls can be monitored through your RSS readers, such as iGoogle.

As I started looking for how others were using this tool I found the ideas fit into a few categories.  (This was easy to do as I took the ideas that were posted on the wall and started moving them around to create the groups!)

  • Brainstorming/ Idea Gathering
  • Homepages – a place to gather resources, post announcements, leave messages, provide homework help, etc.
  • Skill building – note-taking, vocabulary, sorting and summarization work wonderfully on this.
  • Portfolios of Student Work – either as a class or an individual.

I created a wall with all the ideas of classroom use I have found by searching the web and have embedded the wall below.  Please feel free to add to it!

Get Started:

The best way to learn to use this tool is to jump in and get started!

Go to my wallwisher sandbox and make your first post: http://www.wallwisher.com/wall/RobinySandbox

Or go to: http://www.wallwisher.com – log in and build your first wall.

Please share your ideas for wallwisher or the walls you build!

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Collaboration Beyond the School Walls

I was reading a friend’s blog recently, explaining how to make good use of your summer.  One of the ideas was to explore projects with other schools in other areas.  That started me thinking – telecollaboration has been around for a while, but not until recently has it been made so easy.  Connecting with other schools is easy with the aide of wikis, blogs, email, skype, etc.  Our students are already linking with all sorts of people around the globe through facebook, myspace, gaming sites, etc.  Some of this is good and some not so good.  But the idea of linking and working with other groups is an irristeable hook  for our already connected students.

So how do you do it and where do you begin?  Start with asking yourself a few questions:

  • What do you hope to gain through the project? 
  • What learning is going to take place? 
  • Is approaching the subject matter this way going to add to what students need to learn or just distract from it?
  • Do you have the time, support, and equipment needed to make it happen?

Here are a few good links to get you started. 

  • About Telecollaborative Projects –  a basic overview of telecollaboration
  • Telecollaborate! -step by step details on how to plan, create and implement a project
  • Links to Current Projects – lists various running projects.  Some are closed for the year, but a good place when looking for ideas.
  • 2Learn – Requires a registration to gain access to project resources and tools.
  • ePals– Emailing another classroom through epals is a good starting point

Do you have any ideas?  Anything holding you back? 

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Web Wandering Wednesdays – May 7 -Math

Math Web Sites:

Math Tips – They have taken the most missed TAKS questions from last year’s 8th grade test and created teaching videos to show how to work those type of problems.

Decatur Intermediate Math Videos – Decatur teachers took the 5th and 6th grade released math TAKS and posted short videos on how to complete each problem.  These videos are available for anyone to use free of charge.

 Math Solutions – This web site contains math lessons broken into grade areas.  Each lesson contains step by step directions and student samples.  Good ideas when looking for a different way to teach.  Not all lessons are for all grade levels so be sure to verify this info.

Tulyn – Math Video Help – you have to create a free account to see the videos uninterrupted, but the site does contain short video clips on all sorts of math problems at all levels.  Might be a great resource for kids working at home to include a link to a similar problem.

 Math Interactives – lessons for 6-12 grade

Just for Fun:  Don’t you wish all students took math this seriously:

 

 

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Web Wandering Wednesdays – April 30

Inspiration is a wonderful tool to have students map out ideas, stories, events, etc.  The downside is that Inspiration software is tied to a computer that it is loaded on and students cannot continue their work at home, and it is nearly impossible to work on it as a team.  This week’s WWW are online mapping sites that are free and easy to use:

Bubbl.ushttp://bubbl.us/edit.php – online webbing tool – Create an account and the program will save your webs and allow you to go between your saved files.  You can also share out your online webs so other can just view them, or so everyone has a right to edit them.  Can you see the possibilities of a class web on something that students could add to or learn from at any time and anywhere?

MindMeisterhttp://www.mindmeister.com/ – another online mapping tool – From their web site: “Users can create, manage and share mind maps online and access them anytime, from anywhere. In brainstorming mode, fellow MindMeisters from around the world (or just in different rooms) can simultaneously work on the same mind map – and see each other’s changes as they happen.”

 

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Web Wandering Wednesdays – April 23

It is that time of the year, when we all need to take a mental break from time to time. Here are a list of sites that can help take your mind off of the testing season and onto something completely different.

Digg.com
http://digg.com/ – Digg.com is a collection of web sites/stories/postings that other people have found interesting.  if you like something you can “digg” it and the more votes or diggs something gets the higher on the list it becomes.  Search by category or by most recent “dugg stories.”  Very interesting stuff can be
found here.

Stumble Upon
http://www.stumbleupon.com/ – “StumbleUpon discovers web sites based on your interests, learns what you like and brings you more. Discover your web with StumbleUpon.”  Organized more visually than Digg, but also has categories to break down what type of information you want.

LinkedIn
http://www.linkedin.com/ – Connect with people from your past.  The object of the game is to make as many connections as possible.  Actually the point of this website is to help you network with those you went to high school or  college with or worked with in the past.   I actually found my old college roommate here and found out what she is up to now.

Symmetry Lab
http://symmetrylab.com/machine/ – build machines and change what they do by adjusting friction, gravity, etc.  Okay – so maybe this is a little educational, but it is kinda fun as well.

Bonus:
Ellen and the Hula Chair – Need a laugh?  Watch and enjoy!

 

 

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