Posts Tagged ‘Educational Technology’

I was recently asked for a list of free and cheap instructional technology resources that I have found productive for use on computers. Here is a list in no particular order. I will share an app list (iOS & Android) later…

Hot Potatoes (FREE quiz maker) https://hotpot.uvic.ca/

Quia (Subscription quiz maker) http://quia.com

Kahoot (Online quiz maker) https://getkahoot.com/

WordPress (FREE Web space creator) https://wordpress.com/

Wikispaces (FREE Wiki maker) https://www.wikispaces.com/

PBWorks (FREE Wiki maker) http://www.pbworks.com/

Delicious (FREE bookarkmarking service) http://delicious.com/

Diigo (FREE bookarkmarking service) https://www.diigo.com/

MOODLE (Open Source Learning/Content Management System) https://moodle.org/

GIMP (Open Source Image Editor) https://www.gimp.org/

Inkscape (Open Source graphics software) https://inkscape.org/en/

Open Office (FREE Productivity Suite) https://www.openoffice.org/

Audacity (FREE Audio Editor) http://www.audacityteam.org/

Kompozer (FREE Webpage Creator) http://www.kompozer.net/

Ubuntu (FREE Operating System) http://www.ubuntu.com/

VLC (FREE Media Player) http://www.videolan.org/vlc/index.html

Blender (FREE Digital Rendering Software) https://www.blender.org/features/

Scratch (FREE Programming Software) https://scratch.mit.edu/

InfranView (FREE Image Graphic Editor) http://www.irfanview.com/

PDFSAM (FREE PDF Manipulator) http://www.pdfsam.org/

Jing (FREE Screenshot/Screencast Software) https://www.techsmith.com/jing.html

 

Great article at hackeducation.com on the history of the Speak & Spell

TI_SpeakSpell_no_shadow

How Android is Transforming Learning & Playing Infographic
Find more education infographics on e-Learning Infographics

k2-_ba2833fd-2248-4cc1-a555-49e4013aea34.v3This is an update to my low end stab at furnishing my classroom with devices for student use (see other post here – Low end tech:  a solution?).

Along with several old laptops I have been utilizing some DOPO Android tablets that have served very well.  I was able to restore one device that was out of commision and that enabled me to utilize 8 of these tablets for a few months.  After a tragic drop of one of the devices a couple of weeks ago (an accident), I was back to 7 DOPO tablets.  Walmart had a good deal on these devices (upgraded versions for $39.99 each); so, I used some birthday money to order 5 more.  These devices have been stellar in meeting the needs of my students.  I have added cases for each and that has been a good investment in protecting the devices from day to day wear and tear.

I have had to adjust some of the tutorials (QUIA and ExamView activities – see weekly Agendas) that I create on a regular basis in order to bypass the lack of Flash availability on the Android devices.  The old laptops are holding up well, and Ubuntu has been a refreshing answer to the old Windows machines.  The Macs run well with OS 10.4+ and meet the needs of everything that is required for learning.  The Android devices, particularly the DOPO tablets, in addition to students being able to use their own phones and a few other devices via a BYOD network is allowing access for all students on a daily basis.

I have set up a separate Gmail account to manage the Android devices that I will begin using once the new tablets arrive this week.  I load each droid with the minimal browser and a few apps that enhance the classroom experience.  Power management is achieved via several power strips, and I am looking for an improved storage system, but we are making do with what we have.  Each of my students have a Google account via the school district that they can utilize as needed; so, my students are equipped with all the tools they need to be productive and to create on a regular basis (See our recent infographics projects).

The better solution would be if I didn’t have to pay for and support it all myself, but I have found a way for my students to be engaged, to learn, to remediate, and to be enriched on a regular basis.  If you are looking for a low cost device that is sturdy, reliable, and engaging I highly recommend DOPO tablets as a positive addition to your learning environment.

In my continued quest to discover ready made, valuable, computing tutorials for teachers and students, especially FREE resources, I came across Tech Ease in iTunes (I now have a couple of iPods full of these tutorials and will be watching them over the coming days!).  The Florida Center for Instructional Technology, USF College of Education, at the University of South Florida has produced several how to video tutorials for Mac and Windows applications with printable .pdf files and instructions.

The products range form iPhoto, Garageband, Audacity, Windows Movie Maker, Flickr, Delicious, Google docs and so much more!!!  Links to the sites follow:

Tech-Ease Windows

Tech-Ease Mac

Links to Tech-Ease screencasts from iTunes:

PDF (Printable Instructions)

OS X

Podcasting

Digital Video

iPod

Inspiration

Web 2.0

GIS

Blackboard

iLife/iWork

Second Life

Our district does have a subscription to Atomic Learning that meets many of our tutorial needs; however, when programs and applications change it is nice to have resources such as these, produced at the University of South Florida, that prove to be very beneficial especially to teachers and students.

Another wonderful resource I have used for computer basics is Harvard’s Computer Science E-1 (It has graced my iPod since the Fall of 2007).

Harvard Computer Science E-1 Website

Harvard Computer Science E-1 iTunes

Enjoy!

If you haven’t tried creating a PowerPoint Jeopardy game, it is time to get started.  The following link takes you to a great resource for accomplishing this task:  PowerPoint Jeopardy!  There are other sites with templates, instructions, etc.; so, please pass along any that you have used along the way.

With the new WordPress this past spring it was time to find some basic video tutorials for my workshops. Unfortunately I did not have much luck; so, I have thrown together some of my own.

I used the FREE program Jing to create the tutorials, and they are .swf (Shockwave Flash) files. The tutorials are for beginning bloggers; so, have a look and listen and let me know what you think!

H I T WordPress Tutorials: The Basics

WordPress- Sign Up

WordPress- Logging In

WordPress- The Dashboard

WordPress- Design and Theme

WordPress- Design and Widgets

WordPress- Write a Post

WordPress- Write a Page

WordPress- Comments

WordPress- Settings (Change Title)

WordPress- Other Ways to Sign In or Log In

*Not bad for an old cowboy!  😉