Tech Tip – Engaged Readers

Read OR Listen?photo © 2008 sudarshan vijayaraghavan | more info (via: Wylio)

Using technology can bring along some excitement, engagement and creativity to the retaining the curricular information found in textbooks, reading books and websites.

How can teachers monitor student understanding easily and effectively?

1)      Comic Strip Creation: Kerpoof, Pixton, and ToonDoo can be used by students to create a comic strip summarizing the information they have just read/discussed in class.

a) Suggested ways to used Kerpoof in the classroom are found HERE.

b) Try Pixton for free for 14 days and then the educator price is pretty reasonable after that.

c) ToonDoo is a popular cartoon creator. The middle years teachers at Graminia have been using it in some of their classes this year with much success.

2)      Brief Video Clip: Kerpoof, Animoto Edu, and Shwup are all wonderful online tools that enable students to create short movie clips.

a) Animoto Edu is an amazing tool that turns photos, brief video clips and text into an award-winning video. It is very easy to use. Check out some of the case studies examples.

b) Go to Shwup’s site and view it’s intro video which gives you some great ideas right away.

3)      Interactive Poster: Use Glogster Edu to promote/summarize a learning concept through images, text and even video clips.

a) Go directly to Glogster Edu and check out some of the best projects on the front page to give you an idea of what can be done using this product.

4)      Audio Podcast: With Audacity, students can share their summaries, discussions, etc. orally. Audacity is a free software program. For use within our school division, send HELPDESK an email with the computer tag# and they will push the program to it! A tutorial is HERE.

a) PSD has a podcast playground.

b) There are also a lot of podcasts on itunes, all easily made with products like Audacity.  Listen to EdTech, Technology4Teachers, Teach With Video, Smartboard Lessons and Teaching with Smartboards (video podcasts).

5)      Timeline:  Capzles or even in Smart Notebook – Lesson Activity Toolkit – Activities – Timeline Reveal. Summarizing or telling a story sequentially is an important skill for students to develop.

6)      Info Review: There are three ways that students can write reviews about books they have read, content they have studied and information they have researched. Using Wikispaces, Edmodo or GoogleDocs provide a collaborative platform where students and teachers can contribute to the learning of the day.

7)      Voicethread is a tool where a class of students can create a slideshow summary of the content studied/read using images, video, audio and text. What a great place to showcase the learning and continue the conversation! A tutorial is HERE.

8)      Animation:  GoAnimate allows students to build a cartoon character and add their own voice through storyboarding.

a) One of my examples.

9)      Notebook Recorder: Within Smart Notebook is a great recorder that records the audio and what is displayed on your desktop at the same time.

Engaging students in their learning through the use of these technology tools helps them continue to pursue reading and thinking in a deeper manner. They can also be embedded onto a blog, website or wikispace. For further explanations and examples, please visit the SLItech blog or get a hold of

By slitech

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