Your classroom is the best place to introduce technologies that connect us with more than 140 characters. It is time for our classrooms to serve as a gathering spot for more efficient communication which increases creativity and collaboration in everything our learners may do.
How does it look in your classroom? Well, the look depends on your classroom teaching style, purpose for teaching and your students.
Here are my five most favorite tools that promote engaging collaboration and creativity into our modern classrooms:
Owl Eyes’ mission is to help all classrooms—especially those that are economically disadvantaged—better understand literature. Students will have the power to read, annotate and collaborate!
On Owl Eyes, teachers and students have access to free, popular etexts (like Shakespeare, Poe, Chaucer, etc.) with pre-written, Common Core-aligned annotations.
Owl Eyes provides annotations that are aligned to Common Core ELA standards to help students work with themes, literary devices, and character analysis. You can control the visibility of the annotations too!
If you want to supplement the text for your students, switch them on. If you want your students to annotate and read independently, turn them off.
Teachers can assign reading, annotation, and quiz assignments directly within the texts, and also provide peer-to-peer and student-to-teacher digital collaboration.
Owl Eyes will help you meet this new generation of readers on their current ground.
From their personal devices, students will be able to ask questions about a particular word or quote, collaborate and discuss themes with classmates, and deeply understand important texts with insightful annotations.
What is Canva? Canva is a kick butt simple graphic design tool that is smooth to use!
Canva can be used as a quick reflection tool for collaborative opportunities such as think-pic-share which is just a twist on think pair share.
Easel.ly is Canva for infographics. Infographics are great visual tools that can get students to creatively understand abstract things like character comparisons, multi steps to solve equations, etc. The web based tool interface is super easy to use. Students can creatively understand complex concepts and communicate ideas.
Spiral.AC allows communication between students and teachers through an online platform, promoting whole class participation as teachers are able to share discussion topics, students can respond, and result are available immediately. It is formative assessment made easy!
There are three activity templates in Spiral:
Get your whole class involved in question and answer activities.
Create interactive presentations to spark collaboration in class.
Improve the process and outcomes of group work.
Storybird is a new literacy tool for the new generation, this collaborative storytelling site is definitely something your students will love. Work together to create artful stories to share, print and read.