Recently I conducted a session at our Staff In-Service titled Social Studies 3.0. During the session I shared four tools that could potentially help enhance a student's learning experience in a particular subject area like social studies. Simply using an exit ticket to assess student's knowledge sometimes doesn't cut it. Asking students to just watch a video clip can only do so much as they try to make sense of the topic at hand. Reading a monthly magazine from your subject specific educational organization only challenges your thinking as an educator to a certain extent. Leveraging the power of web tools can transform learning experiences for students and teachers alike. Here are four of my favorite.....
VideoNot.es ~ http://www.videonot.es/
Watch a video and take notes on your device that automatically sync to Google Drive. This tool is available as an extension in the Chrome Store.
EdPuzzle ~ https://edpuzzle.com/
Insert questions throughout a particular video clip to help students comprehend what they are watching. This comes in handy as a way to flip instruction and/or gather data. Students can also insert their own questions. A library of video clips with embedded questions is also available.
Plickers ~ https://www.plickers.com/
Teachers can collect real time data without requiring students to use technology. Simply print cards, pass out to students, project questions, and scan students answers with mobile device device app.
Twitter ~ http://www.sschat.org/
Stay on top of best practices through your subject specific hashtag on your favorite social media feed. In this particular instance we focused on the #sschat hashtag on Twitter. Check out Cybraryman's webpage on all things hashtags.
The four tools I shared above are just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many innovative ways to make learning fun for students and teachers. Over the next few weeks take one of these tools and try it out. Better yet, do it along with your students to take some of the pressure off.
Brad Currie is the author of All Hands on Deck: Tools for Connecting Educators, Parents, and Communities. He is one of the founding partners of Evolving Educators LLC. Brad is an ASCD Emerging Leader, Bammy Award Finalist, ClassDojo Thought Leader and Google Certified Educator. He currently serves as a K-8 Supervisor of Instruction and Middle School Vice Principal for the Chester School District in Chester, NJ. Learn more about Brad by following him on Twitter @bradmcurrie or visiting his website at www.bradcurrie.net.