Thursday, February 20, 2014

Week 5: Web 2.0 Tools in the Classroom

Well, this week was a welcome change in that I was actually familiar with 4 of the 13 tools we were tasked with working with this week. I was starting to fear I was just too old (gasp!) to try to jump into a new career.

Our list of tools to explore included: Flickr, Big Huge Labs, Dumpr, Glogster, Google Drive, Zamzar, Survey Monkey, Doodle, StumbleUpon, BubblUs, Voki, Jing and Animoto.

Of this list, I had prior experience with Flickr, Doodle, Survey Monkey, and Google Drive (all in either my personal life, or my prior corporate life, but all in which I can see applications in education as well). I hadn't used Flickr personally, only on behalf of one of my clients, so it was fun to set up my Photostream and map my pictures (I intentionally only chose travel photos so my map would look more exotic!). It also made me very envious of some of our pre-kid travel!

A few other results of my exploration:

Animoto- Birthday wishes for my mom
BubblUs - Brainstorm on what the heck I'm going to do when I grow up
Voki - See my previous post...

In short, I could see applications in education to nearly all of these. I must confess that it was a stretch for Dumpr (plus the name is awfully unfortunate) - while I had some fun on this site, it was harder to think of a clear educational use.

I think the other thing to keep in mind - as with any web 2.0 tool - is to guard against style over substance. There's no use in a flashy tool if the content stinks. Two of these applications in particular - BubblUs and Glogster - reminded me of things I did back in the dark ages, just with a healthy dose of fun and cool sprinkled in, which is how it should be (in my humble opinion of course).

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