YouTube is blocked. What does on do? Go to, type in the address at which you see YouTube (http://etc), save it as an .avi file and put on a PowerPoint page.
BE AWARE, though, that sites tha you get at home may be inaccessible at school.

How to use many, many web tools for teaching is at

Voice thread: Voices over slides. This is a voice thread about Ellis Island with students taking different roles. Britlit wiki. Examples of student responses and problem-based poetry project. Worth a look.

Voicethread is a site that allows you to upload pictures and documents. You can also put comments on the side. Using your voice, you can explain what someone is viewing in the picture.

Ideas for Using Voicethread

Making all kinds of things happen in your wiki:

Are you looking for Web 2.0 ideas? Check out Jim Burke's site with two hundred sites including sites that discuss the teaching of writing, the future of reading workshops and 100 essential Web 2.0 tools at:

Looking for resources for ELA, Social Studies, Arts, Critical Thinking, and thousands of free Internet resources: ****

From the NY Times Expository Writing connections in the Times:

The Learning Network - Teaching and Learning With The New York Times
The Learning Network - Teaching and Learning With The New York Times

July 9, 2010, 2:04 pm

Tech Tips For Teachers: Free, Easy and Useful Creation Tools

By [[author/holly-epstein-ojalvo/|HOLLY EPSTEIN OJALVO]] AND [[author/katherine-schulten/|KATHERINE SCHULTEN]]
students on computers
students on computers
Heidi Schumann for The New York Times In California, high school interns try out digital “flexbooks” created by the CK-12 Foundation. Go to related article »
You might be looking for ways to refresh or update your bag of tricks. Or maybe you’re trying to meet new technology requirements, such as using interactive whiteboards. Or perhaps you’re just curious to find out how technology tools can enhance your teaching and your students’ experience and engagement in your courses.
If you’ve hesitated to incorporate technology tools into your practice – due to either discomfort or limited time – we’re here to help.
Ryan Goble, who often coaches teachers in what he calls the “mindful” use of technology, has written today’s guest post on user-friendly tools that enable the creation of student projects. Ryan is an adjunct professor of education at Aurora University and Roosevelt University in Chicago, and the founder of the site Mindblue Productions and the social network Making Curriculum Pop.
All of the tools are free as of this writing. Some do ask you to enter your e-mail address, but don’t be spooked – usually it’s just to help the site protect and identify your work and communicate with you securely. (Remember, too, that of the great tools and other resources out there available for purchase, some may well be worth the cost.)
We hope you find these suggestions helpful. Please feel free to share your experiences with these tools and your recommendations for other sites and programs to add to Ryan’s list.

Tech Tips For Teachers: Free, Easy and Useful Creation Tools

New technologies are a powerful way for teachers to take their instruction to the next level. With so many choices, the trick is to locate user-friendly tools that allow you to craft differentiated learning experiences that engage students and help them develop 21st-century skills.
In that spirit, below are five ways to support student creation and “public displays of learning” using online technology tools.
If you’re a Luddite, not to worry: these tools are easy to understand and easy to use, and they can make your classroom more interesting, interactive and student-centered. And if you don’t have computer access in school, you can still use many of them by making handouts or assigning the sites to be used at home.

1. Visualize Texts

Tech Tools: Wordle, Tagxedo or The New York Times Visualization Lab
Wordle is a fun tool for playing with language and making meaning from texts. (And it’s quite safe for classroom use.)
This self-described “toy” allows students to analyze word frequency in any text, from a poem to a science book chapter, by simply copying and pasting “a bunch of text” into the box on the top of this page. Click on “go” and you’ll get a snapshot of the most common words in that text as shown by size. (The most frequently appearing words appear larger.)
For example, looking at a word cloud for Act 1, Scene 5 of Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” might illuminate the major characters, themes and issues of that part of the play, and/or the writer’s style and diction. And Wordle can be used for expository and nonfiction texts too (even crossword puzzles!).
Visualizations of New York Times articles can help highlight key vocabulary, content and concepts. For instance, students could create a Wordle using three articles on the recession to try to identify key terms they should learn more about.
Examining word clouds can not only provide new vantage points for literary and language scholars, but also help English-language learners, and others who have trouble with complex texts, to see patterns.
Students can play with the font and colors and make as well as save and reuse “Wordles” of their own, so the possibilities are endless. They can use their own writing to see what words they overuse, perhaps, or create Wordle versions of a famous poem, speech or song that visually reflects the way the text “feels” to them.
The Times has created some fascinating word clouds to help readers gain a visual understanding of current events. See, for example, the word cloud from the 2008 presidential election compares speeches made at the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, and the interactive “word train” that let people submit the words that best described their state of mind on Election Day.
The New York Times Visualization Lab – an offshoot of I.B.M.’s project Many Eyes – allows readers to explore visualize text, values, maps, data points and parts of a whole in any Times article as well as some public records, like the Consumer Price Index.
More adventurous users might explore Tagxedo, where you can create word clouds in the shape of an object.

2. Make Content Comic

Tech Tools: ReadWriteThink’s Comic Creator, Professor Garfield’s Comics Lab or MakeBeliefsComix
On any of these sites, students can pick from a wide range of story elements – characters, expressions, actions, settings and dialogue boxes – to create unique visual narratives. They can use these tools to illustrate any concept or curricular content, such as a scientific process, historical event, personal narrative or literary text. Suddenly every student can access his or her inner artist, and you’ll have material for a great display of student work.
The Learning Network graphic organizers Saying What’s Unsaid (PDF) and Telling a Times Story (PDF) guide students in developing their ideas for graphic narratives. They’re “writable,” so they can be used not only as paper handouts but also on individual computers or an interactive whiteboard.
For example, students might use Telling a Times Story to show their understanding of squirrel behavior or what happens when you lose your cool after reading the Science Times articles on these topics.
Students can also create comic strips as part of the learning process, not just as products. Try printing and distributing hard copies of the “Cartoon ‘Did You Read?’ Quiz” (PDF) at Making Curriculum Pop. It’s a learning assessment in which kids “storyboard” the major ideas they noted in assigned reading.

3. Create Interactive Timelines

Tech Tools: Xtimeline, Time Glider or Timetoast
Timelines, of course, organize information and events that have developed over time, often in historical eras, cultural movements or personal biographies. They display order and sequence as well as relationships and, sometimes, causality between events.
Why go online to create this traditional graphic organizer? Interactive versions are not only visually engaging, but also easily incorporate multimedia such as video and audio clips and link directly to source material.
There are several free online timeline creators. XTimeline, Time Glider and Timetoast are all multimedia-enabled, and they all do a nice job of creating interfaces that walk learners through steps as they build a chronology.
Students can build timelines using one or more Times articles. For example, they might use Times Topics to learn about a public figure like Chief Justice John Roberts and then create an interactive timeline about milestones and accomplishments in his life. Or they could make a timeline that illustrates the key moments in a sports event as reported in a “live blog,” such as the Goal post on the World Cup match between Germany and Spain.
Students can also explore the numerous New York Times interactive timelines, which chronicle biographies (like the life and career of Senator Robert C. Byrd), ongoing events (such as the Gulf oil spill) and political developments (such as the road to health care reform).
And for an interesting timeline-based alternative to an site search, Time Glider has an online application called The NYT Explorer, which automatically generates a timeline, with links to Times articles from 1981 and on, for any keyword.

4. Design Interactive Presentations

Tech Tools: and Museum Box
PowerPoint is not the only tool students can use to present concepts and ideas visually. Two classroom mainstays – the poster presentation and the diorama – have digital counterparts that students can use for class projects (and that you can use to present course material in engaging ways).
With students can create posters enhanced with multimedia. The interface walks you through the creation and gives students a wide range of scrapbook-inspired templates. The finished projects (such as this one on the causes of the American Revolution) can be presented with a projector or whiteboard, saved and/or printed. (Note: be sure you go to the .edu edition of Glogster. The regular site contains some content that is inappropriate for a classroom setting.)
Museum Box takes the old standbys – dioramas and presentation cubes – and kicks them up a notch by enabling the creation of 3-D dioramas with a series of interactive cubes.
You might want to give students one of The Learning Network’s graphic organizers to help them plan their Museum Cubes or Glogster posters. For example, students could read a Times article or The Learning Network’s 6 Q’s About the News feature and use The 5 W’S and an H (PDF) to plan a Museum Box cube in which each side answers a question from the article. Or the K/W/L Chart (PDF) can be used as a brainstorming sheet for students before they create their own visual K/W/L posters on Glogster.

5. Map and Brainstorm Ideas

Tech Tools:, and Cacoo
Mind Maps are idea-processing tools, made popular by the British IQ specialist Tony Buzan starting in the 1960s. Many schools have invested in popular mind-mapping software like Inspiration, but there are also many free online programs that help students develop colorful idea webs.
A basic program to start with is The “start brainstorming” button will get you underway, and a click on the “help” menu on the left hand side of the interface gives you all the general instructions you need to start “pinning” bubbles into a mind map. and Cacoo are collaborative programs (CoSketch has a particularly easy interface) that allow people on different computers to work together in real time – even from different locations, so students could collaborate on maps on their personal computers for a homework assignment.
Kids can find lots of inspiration in The Times for generating ideas on virtually any topic or in any curricular subject, from math to fine arts.

Getting students to respond to multiple books assignment example and ning:
Book It
10th Grade

You are getting ready to embark on a great journey that involves your learning, but more importantly, a bit of freedom. During our study of poetry, we will take one day a week to read in class. What you have to do is simple:

· Choose a book from the list below (previews are on the ning site)
· Secure it at the bookstore, or a store of your choice
· Join the for your group
· Come prepared to read on the day assigned
· Submit three blogs corresponding the sections identified by your moderator and respond to three of your colleagues in a discussion on the blog
· Follow the rubric below for success

Points Possible: 75

Book List:
The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
The Innocent Man by John Grisham
A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Feed by M.T. Anderson
An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
Gifted: A Novel by Nikita Lalwani
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
The Road by Cormac McCarthy
Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind by V.S. Ramachandran

Due Dates:
Tuesday, March 2nd First blog post due
Friday, March 5th First comment due
Tuesday, March 9th Second blog post due
Friday, March 12th Second comment due
Tuesday, April 6th Third blog post due
Friday, April 9th Third comment due


_ Response includes a passage from appropriate section of the text. In the response, the
student offers a reflection on the passage pointing out the passage’s
relevance to the reader or the text. Readers are encouraged to express like or dislike as
long as it is fully supported with direct quotations and references to the text.

_ Response to text is void of spelling and grammatical errors and exhibits
sophisticated sentence structure.

_ Response to classmate shows careful reading and thought while referring to the text.
Response to classmate adds something new to the discussion or point made by classmate
whether it is in agreement or disagreement.

_ Response to classmate clearly follows the etiquette of blogging showing respect for the
ideas expressed and politely debating when appropriate. Response also follows the rules
of spelling and grammar.

*Adapted from Andrew Churches Threaded Discussion Rubric - Bloom's Digital Taxonomy

Getting started and navigating the Ning:
1. Go to and join the group for your book. Consider book marking your group page directly and bypassing the main page in the future.
2. Make sure to go to your profile, upload an image and fill in your full name so your instructor can give you credit for your responses.
3. When responding to your prompts, make sure to go to the discussion started by your instructor; do not start your own discussion. Also avoid using the “quick add” feature on the main page and the “blog tab” on the main page. This will cause your response to be placed in the wrong place.
4. When responding to the instructor’s prompt, your original post should be 4-6 sentences including a quotation that supports your argument with a proper in-text citation.
5. When responding to a classmate, your response should be between 3-4 sentences with quotations as optional. This response must add something new to the point your classmate was making.
6. Make sure to not repeat quotations and points made earlier in the discussion by classmates.

Interesting Ways

The Interesting Ways to Use series has been really successful. I measure their success in how useful they are to teachers and other educators in helping with professional development.
They have been a great example of crowdsourcing good quality classroom ideas and it has been great fun connecting with all of the people who have taken time to add an idea. It is remarkable what can be achieved and created together if you give people the right way to do it. Thanks for all the help so far.
It all began with One Idea, One Slide and One Image as a premise for the IWB presentation and that has always remained. I hope we can all continue to create them – let me know if you have any other ideas for a presentation.
I wanted to keep the family together in one place and give you one page to see them all, as so many of you have requested. Don’t forget that if you want to contribute an idea just let me know and I will give you access to share your thoughts.
Interesting Ways to…
Use a Learning Platform in the Classroom
Support Spelling in the Classroom
Teach Reading Comprehension in the Classroom
Use Web Conferencing in the Classroom
Make Your Classroom a Sparkly Place to Learn
Use Audio in Your Classroom
Use Wallwisher in the Classroom
Support Writing in the Classroom
Use Google Wave in the Classroom
Use an iPod Touch in the Classroom
Nintendo Wii in the Classroom
Use a Wiki in the Classroom
Use a Visualizer in the Classroom
Use Twitter in the Classroom
Use Wordle in the Classroom
Use Your Pocket Video Camera in the Classroom
Use Google Docs in the Classroom
Use Google Earth in the Classroom
Use a Nintendo DS in the Classroom
Use Search Engines in the Classroom
Use Your Interactive Whiteboard in the Classroom
Prezi in the Classroom
Use Voicethread in the Classroom

If you were going to do a.... then you students could use....
Technology Tip #22

If you were going to assign a…
…your students could do something similar at…
…and create a
moving presentation with video, audio and images and text

Google docs

PowerPoint that can be viewed online outside of class

slide show
narrated slide show
movie of images/words

narrated moving slide show
slide show of photos or images with text bubbles and decorations

cartoons or comic strips
Comic Creator (
cartoon or comic strip in black and white

full color online strip, book or cartoon
photos or images with text bubbles
animated cartoon

script formatted to look like a real screenplay

interactive poster with video, audio, images and text


website builder- easy to add images, video, etc.

MS Publisher*

full color brochures with text and images

oral report
a podcast, radio broadcast, eye witness report, or song
talking photo
Tip # 1
If you are looking for an easy way to add a piece of technology to something you are already doing, check out this presentation of 38 ways to use Wordle. If you don't know wordle, you will want to check it out at
Thirty-Eight Interesting Ways* to use Wordle in the Classroom
I know when you see me you will say, Hey, I loved wordle tip # 1!

Some helpful comparisons:

Blogs, Wikis, Docs: Which is right for your lesson?
A Comparison Table

A blog is a web log, a frequently updated website. More -
A wiki is a web page that visitors can quickly edit. More -
Google Docs provides an online office suite that allows you to access your documents from any computer via a web browser. It also facilitates collaboration and sharing. More -
Usually only one person or a small team can post. Each post is one author's voice. Others can only leave comments.
Many. Most wikis allow either anonymous editing or editing by a limited number of approved users.
Each document is created by an individual, who can then invite collaborators.
Usually visitors can comment. Sometimes a small team has the ability to post.
All visitors can be collaborators - or access to edit the wiki can be limited to approved users.
Docs can be shared with a small team of collaborators at one time (synchronously). A larger number of users can collaborate asynchronously.
Reverse chronological order. The newest post appears at the top of the page and older posts move down until archived (usually by month). Most blog systems also support creation of a few static pages, such as an about page or class expectations page.
A wiki site is a hyperlinked collection of individual pages.
Each document is separate. Users can view all docs that they create or collaborate on at their Google Docs home page, which allows organization in folders. A published document can be viewed as an individual website.
Frequency of updates varies, but blogs tend to be updated more often and more consistent than wikis and docs. Visitors return often to blogs that are updated frequently and consistently. RSS users can also subscribe to a feed so that new posts come to them automatically.
Wikis are updated as needed, usually when new information about the topic becomes available, information changes, or a mistake is found. RSS users can subscribe to a feed so that they are notified of changes automatically.
Docs are usually created and edited for a specific purpose, but they can be saved indefinitely for reuse at a later time.
Blogs are easily created and easily updated.

If you can email, you can blog! And adding images and files is as easy as adding attachments.

Some blog systems allow authors to embed media.

It's a Two-Way Technology - visitors can leave comments.

Most blogs allow teams of authors with various permissions.

Some blogging systems allow users to download a backup of their blog.
Wikis maintain a history of all revisions to each page, including who made what changes.

Most wikis also provide a discussion forum for each page, though this is not always a threaded discussion.

Most wikis allow different permissions for different users.

If you can word process, you use a wiki! And adding images and files is as easy as adding attachments to an email.

Most wikis allow users to download an html backup.
Google Docs are the best choice for synchronous collaboration on a single document - with some delay, users can see others changes as they occur! The system handles conflicting changes well.

A history of revisions is kept for all documents.

Each spreadsheet has a built in chat room for collaborators.

Each presentation has a built in chat room for viewers.

Upload and export most word processing and spreadsheet file types.
No multiple authors on a single post (usually).
No history of revisions on a single post (usually).

Though archives are searchable and can be organized by category, it can be difficult to find old content.

Some blogging systems do not allow users to download a backup of their blog.
Users can overwrite each others' changes if they are editing the same page at the same time. Wikis are best for asynchronous collaboration, not synchronous collaboration.

Though many wiki systems now have WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editors, some wikis require addional knowledge of wiki syntax that is different than HTML. This is helpful for troubleshooting problems with WYSIWYG editors, too. Wiki syntax can be different for different wiki systems.

Though a history of revisions is available, archives of old content are not easily accessible by category or searching.
The history of revisions can be difficult to navigate.

Old data may be difficult to find because it is not easily accessible by category or searching.

Only a small number of users can collaborate synchronously. (About 10 in docs and presentations, but Google says 50 can join a spreadsheet at one time.)

Docs only allow two levels of permissions: viewers & collaborators (plus owners).

Importing and exporting files is limited to only a few formats (but Microsoft Office formats are included: .doc, .xls, .ppt)

Spectrum of Uses:

Subject Specific Examples:

More Examples:

More On Educational Wikis:


Edit this page (if you have permission) | Google Docs -- Web word processing, presentations and spreadsheets.

What do students need in the classroom? Visit for grades K-4 for 5-8 MS and HS 9-10 technology tips

PUBLISHED ARTICLES AND OTHER resources that discuss how using the internet to improve teaching. This site includes links to published articles about how, for example, writing on line, improves student's revision habits.


PUBLISHED ARTICLE ABOUT WRITING IN THE 21ST CENTURY tells the story about how Twitter resulted in
Two examples from AP history exam:As the country slid deeper into the Depression, it became clear that drastic change was needed in order to save the American banking system. Fortunately, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, after taking office, immediately declared “THIS IS MADNESS!” and established a four-day banking holidayAfter the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, John Wilkes Booth cried, “THIS IS SPARTA” before jumping fromthe balcony.
A teacher describes her surprise about how using the internet improved her students' understanding of Hamlet: A link to her "school-facebook" blog.

USING A WIKI TO ORGANIZE COURSES: This well-designed site shows you how to organize multiple classes and multiple sources of information.

USING A WIKI FOR STUDENTS TO PRESENT COLLABORATIVE WORK: An excellent example of a wiki that an ELA class developed on Shakespeare.
Resources for teachingideas:**//ReadWriteThink!//** The mission of ReadWriteThink,is to provide educators, parents, and afterschool professionals with access to the highest quality practices in reading and language arts instruction by offering the very best in free materials. Every lesson plan on ReadWriteThink has been aligned not only to the IRA/NCTE Standards for the English Language Arts but to individual state standards as well.

Writing Fix Since 2001, the **Northern Nevada Writing Project** has proudly sponsored this free-to-use website, which aims to "fix" those teachers who don't believe that writing instruction can be both the most enjoyable part of their teaching day. If you explore the website's pages, you will find prompts, lessons, and resources that were created and shared--and then posted --during workshops and in-service classes sponsored by the NNWP. The Nevada teachers who participate in these professional development opportunities discover ways to be passionate about teaching writing, and share the very best, hoping that their passion is contagious to the teachers across the globe who have discovered what they've proudly posted here. The Mentor Text Bibliography can help you directly link to lessons and prompts based on books you might already own.

iWrite Great Source iwrite is a collection of writing resources and support for educators, students in grades 5-12, and parents. For Educators — Quick access to powerful writing lessons and assessments; For Students — Step-by-step support for completing writing assignments; For Parents — Tips for helping your child become a better writer, thinker, and learner

EDSITEment EDSITEment is a partnership among the National Endowment for the Humanities, Verizon Foundation, and the National Trust for the Humanities.EDSITEment offers a treasure trove for teachers, students, and parents searching for high-quality material on the Internet in the subject areas of literature and language arts, foreign languages, art and culture, and history and social studies.All websites linked to EDSITEment have been reviewed for content, design, and educational impact in the classroom. They cover a wide range of humanities subjects, from American history to literature, world history and culture, language, art, and archaeology, and have been judged by humanities specialists to be of high intellectual quality.

Wordnik Wordnik is a place for all the words, and everything known about them. Their goal is to show you as much information as possible, as fast as they can find it, for every word in English, and to give you a place where you can make your own opinions about words known.Traditional dictionaries make you wait until they've found what they consider to be "enough" information about a word before they will show it to you. Wordnik knows you don't want to wait—if you're interested in a word, they're interested too! Examples of information they provide may include: example sentences, related words (those that show up in the same type of sentences), related images from places like Flickr, statistics about the word, audio pronunciations, and links and comments provided by users like you.

Fun With Words is dedicated to amusing quirks, peculiarities, and oddities of the English language: wordplay. Playing with words and language is both entertaining and educational. Here you can have plenty of fun with words with over 500 pages of word puzzles, games, amazing lists, and fun facts.The site is divided into topical sections. Use the menu on the left to access them. Recommended pages: Books on Etymology (Origins of Words/Phrases), words that end in gry (puzzle) and Anagram Generator.