Term Four, 2010

Week 10:
Partners in Rhyme
Partners in Rhyme is a sound effect and loop website. They are royalty free, classroom apporpriate sound effects that you can download at no cost and use in movies, podcasts, or any other multi-media piece with your students.
There are various categories of sound effect (of which i will let you explore rather than list here) and clear instructions on how to download them to your computer. One below is an example of what is on there.

Week 9:
This BBC website allows you to compare the size of various things such as ancient buildings, natural disasters, space-related with places on a google map. For example, I compared the size of the Great Wall of China with Christchurch, New Zealand. It was rather interesting...
This is such a great tool for perspective on things from history and a really authentic way to get ICT into your historical or current events discussions.

Week 8:
This website could be the resource you plan a whole term around let alone a one off look. A fantastic resource and one that could really extend some of your learners in regards to future thinking and problem solving. Future States is U.S based and the videos are related to that part of the world, but we all know that the U.S has a huge influence on the world so no doubt relative to NZ and other Western states. There are 11 episodes (all with lesson plans that can be easily adapted for your class) that look at various future scenarios such as housing, immigration, environmental disaster etc.
I found this website in Interface Magazine's list of websites for classrooms; an excellent resource (if you're not subscribed to it you should be).

Week 7:
The concept of is basically a way to visually enhance uploaded documents in your online environment. This is for those who wish documents in their website to be more visually impressive, as well as usable from within the site. It links nicely with your google account (or other 3rd party accounts) so all you do is uplaod a document, then add any scribbles on it you want noticed, them copy the embedding code and paste it into a widget box. The results are below:
From here you can download, print a copy, and interact with the file.

Week 6:
This is a website that allows you record voice, or type content as a quick way of podcasting. When finished it will email you a link to a widget that can be embedded into your wiki/blog/LMS. I made one below explaining what it does. Click on the play button.

Week 5:
This is a classic website used by many teachers already. Basically, if you are still saying to people at dinner parties that "Comic Sans is my favourite font" then you are stuck in the 90s. Excite up your life with some new fonts for your word processing needs or presentations this is the place to come. Dafont lets you browse, select, then download fonts for free. Its reasonably straight forward how it puts the fonts into your font bank but if you struggle with it get someone a bit more tech-savvy to show you.

Week 4:
Telescopic Text
This is a great tool. It won't take up much of your time and is possibly the best way to demonstrate the 'show' not 'tell' philosophy in teaching writing to your students.
There's not much to explain, it only does one thing but does it perfectly. You can create your own, or just use the example and view the creations of others. Fantastic!
Try clicking on the highlighted words below:

Week 3:
There's nothing like reading an atlas! Lots of exciting names and places you never knew existed. This site is like that. This is a great resource for your students to test their skills around the geographical side of life. A city is named and the country it's in and you have to locate it on a map...pretty tricky! Higher scores are given for the closeness of the location to your pick on the map. Probably better for older students or super keen younger ones.

Week 2:
This website is fantastic for your online learning environments, PowerPoint, word processing etc etc. In fact, I can't think of a reason not to use it. The great thing is that the down-loadable images stay in PNG format so they will stay white background free. Plus it has an excellent filter to find larger or smaller pixel sizes and various colour backgrounds. I found it way better than Google images when looking for brand specific images.

Week 1:
We all know the potential for creativity using ICT tools in the class. This 'simple to use' website is a winner as it allows the user to easily print their creation and save it to the online gallery.
Here's one i didn't make:

Term Three, 2010
Week 10:
This is a book creator able to be embedded into websites etc. The website comes with its own pre-created bank of images and characters (provided by artists linked to the site). The stunning graphics are perfect for poetic writing and great story prompts.
The Magic of Music by LiteraryLady on Storybird

Week 9:
Go! Animate
This is another website i saw a student using recently in a classroom visit. I've seen this before and wondered if it was too complex for the classroom but this kid proved otherwise. He commented: "Its really easy to put together short clips with real action in them". I think this is a good way to describe Go! Animate. If you focus on short clips, its a winner, and as always, kids know how to master these tools well before us!
As you can see below its embeddable as well: A Teacher's tale.. by cheekyboy

Like it? Create your own at It's free and fun!

We had a really large earthquake in Christchurch this weekend. Its caused a large amount of devastation and disruption to everyone in the city. Thankfully, no one was killed which is a miracle when you look at the photos on this website. Not to glorify the quake but it could be a great resource for those who want their kids to write about it, talk about it, and share their experiences.

Week 8:
We previously looked at Wordle and Tagul as word cloud generators. This Tagxedo website is another one of those. It allows the user to create word clouds and edit specific shapes. What seems better about Tagxedo is the ease with which one can navigate to get the final product. Give it it go, perfect for wikis/blogs/websites and great to print off for the classroom walls.
Here's one with content taken from our eTime website:


Week 7:
One Sentence
The concept this website is based around is being able to tell a story in just one sentence. A great website for its simplicity and ideas it can give you for your English teaching. From the website: "One Sentence is about telling your story, briefly. Insignificant stories, everyday stories, or turning-point-in-your-life stories, boiled down to their bare essentials."

Week 6:
Myths and Legends Stroy Creator
This is an excellent website for creating online stories. Whilst he title suggests it is based around myths and legends, the database of backgrounds, characters, movements and speech bubbles means you could use it for any story. Not to mention the fact that you can upload your own characters etc...making it perfect for the classroom. The students i watched using it were Year 7/8 but any age group could use it (with teacher assistance or as a whole class, teacher led).
This is a great, website that was being used in Room 6, at Heaton Intermediate School, in Christchurch. A big thanks to Sue Davidson and her class!

Week 5:
A touch gimmicky, yes. Useful, potentially. Genius concept for a website, most definitely!
Google four things at once. Perfect for ruining conversation at dinner parties.


Week 4:
This is a fanstastic resource. On the TED website are a collection of videos where the world's most inspiring thinkers and do-ers talk about life, their ideas etc.
A must for any teacher with a pulse.
Here is an example of Sir Ken Robinson's talk on creativity in schools:

Week 3:
This is a simple website with the really great concept of random activities in creative forms. A perfect website to use with Gifted students, or as creative tasks for early finishers in Literacy. An uncomplicated, practical website for the classroom.

Week 2:
Based around the concept of the old pencil flip books we did when we were kids... Flipbook lets you create simple animations using an 'onion skin' approach to building up stop motion animation. Ridiculously easy to use and very addictive, this would be a great tool for students looking to use their creative minds in short bursts. A perfect I'm finished, what do i do next activity...

Week 1:
ZooBurst is a digital storytelling tool that is designed to let anyone easily create their own customized 3D pop-up books. Whats more they can be embedded into blogs and wikis and even let you use your webcam to interact with them. You need to request membership to this site as its still in its infancy but an absolute must for any teacher using the web in their classroom!
Here is one below that i made.

Term Two, 2010
Week 11:
An awesome concept for poetry in your classroom. All you need are newspapers, black makers and students with an imagination...Easy!
This website will give you some great ideas and examples to show your class.
These are the brainchild of Austin Kleon. He has a book out of his poems which you can see on the blog.

Week 10:
As it is the World Cup and as football fever has gripped New Zealand and every other nation on the planet it seems only right to have a link to the FIFA website's goals of the World Cup 2010. Every goal scored is included in a 3 camera angled replay. Follow further links and find out an amazing array of statistical info and past event info; absolutely superb for maths or topical studies. No excuse not to know whats going on and what has happened previously at what is without question the greatest sporting event on the planet!

Week 9:
A great interactive spelling website where the computer calls out the word and the user has to spell it. Very simple concept but another great tool for the classroom and at home.

Week 8:
A digital learning website that takes students on walks through the forest with virtual guides helping them learn all about the trees, animals and seasonal changes etc.
Would be great for junior to middle age groups. But the content is definitely appropriate for intermediate age groups.

Week 7:
This is awesome. A website that you can direct your students to in poetry writing time when they can't find a word to rhyme. Therefore eliminating the boring word problem that pops up all the time when kids try to rhyme. Can't find a word to rhyme with concussion?
Write out the poem and click on the word and it will show you all the options! Brilliant!


Week 6:

Now this website may not be the most educationally sound (that said its completely musically aligned) but its definitely fun. Based around the "singstar" concept but completely free and online with heaps of different songs, and all ones the kids know. Your students will love it and if you have anyone brave enough to actually have a go in front of the class it has really entertainment value. Maybe you can try it out at home (where no one can hear you). You can even record the singing for whatever reason that is necessary.

Week 5:

Xtranormal is a web tool that will convert text into movies. An absolutely awesome concept that will do more that convince your reluctant writers to get the draft written so it can be presented in movie form. The characters will interact as commanded by the user in the planning stage and the dialogue and actions are all typed in and dropped and dragged etc. The final movie can be uploaded to you tube, embedded via Flash etc. A really outstanding and currently very popular tool!
Here is an idea of what Xtranormal can do:

This video clip outlines a simple process to create an Xtranormal movie:

Week 4:

We all know and love wordle for its creative and simple way to produce vocabulary displays etc. But Tagul seems to be a more advanced in HTML code and graphically impressive. It linked all the text if found on a specific web address. This was definitely a more advanced process to create but the results below show the benefits. It was easier to embed in my wiki too. Follow the steps in the editing area and have a go, the more you experiment with it the better.
This example is taken from my URL address of Nicketime:

Week 3:

I saw this on a ICT PD online wiki (thanks ICT PD online) and thought this was way better than SKRBL below. In fact way way better!
As simple as click on a wall and adding a sticky note with a thought or answer or anything really. Could be a really useful tool in the classroom. You get a load of choice over the design of your wall etc and can be easily embedded in your wiki! As below:

Week 2:
Prezi is an obline presentation tool. What makes it so special is its ability to take a presentation to a far more interctive level than the standard slide show we are all used to falling asleep in. Creators of presentations can link all their ideas in various forms, be it video, imagery or text. The best way to describe it is to view one below. The second clip is an example of how it could be used for persuasive writing in your classroom- merely the tip of the iceberg!
As you can see below, once created they can be embedded in a wiki or blog. Awesome!
(Cheers Tim Betts!)

Week 1:
This tool has all sorts of potential! Its basically an online whiteboard that visitors can collaborate ideas etc on. There is a great temptation to write 'boobs' or something like that but if you set it up with your students and let them know how it could be used for good, not evil then its a real winner!. The one below is a graffiti board which means just that, so leave some graffiti.
To embed one in your wiki or blog, follow the instructions from this link

Term One, 2010
Week 9:
Lots of fun interactive maths/numeracy games to get kids motivated etc etc. Not alot to explain- click on it and have a look to see if it suits your classroom!

Week 8:
There are so many ideas here to take and apply in the classroom that its a necessity to have saved in your favourites websites. A particularly interesting one is '45 ways to use Wordle' and other well presented ideas like using google docs, voicethread etc. They are all presented in slideshow format so you can embed them in your staff pages etc
See below:

Week 7:
There are a load of web based interactive maths/literacy trackers out there but this one could be the champion! Similar to Mathletics, better than Tut Pup, Smart Kiddies is excellent to use with children struggling with mathematical concepts... they can work at their own rate, be assessed individually and the activities are interactive. You can tie in a whole class to track and monitor, set individual tasks and homework.

Click me

Week 6:
Egg Timer.Com
This clever little tool won't change the world but could be mighty handy in your classroom. Type in the amount of time you want to countdown and click on the go button. A countdown will be displayed and an alarm will ring out to notify you! Short and sweet.

Week 5:
Wolfram Alpha

This website is quoted by Time magazine as " a search engine that can actually understand your questions and try to figure out answers. It takes some doing to learn how to talk to, but it's well worth it." I'm not sure how to explain it either as I'm not a web design guru by any stretch of the imagination but this website is just far too cool and powerful to not try with your students and figure out the best way to use it.
Click on the image

Week 4: DIPITY

Dipity is a tool that allows users to create or view timelines on anything from natural disasters to sporting achievements. Its hard to explain but easy to view. See below:

Earthquake In Chile on Dipity.

Week 1-3

Sorry, it took a bit of time but it's never easy getting back into the routine that is work!
Here are some excellent creativity enhancing websites to look at for the start of the school year.

1) Shape Collage
This is a down-loadable application via a website that lets you create awesome collages out of the photos you have in your pictures folder.
The software is excellent. Easy to install, easy to use, and very flexible in the collages it can make. I had a go...and loved it!

2) Certificate Street
If your sick and tried of the boring offerings in your Microsoft publisher certificate bank, or your staying up hours into the night making certificates for you clubs and classrooms, then this is for you. Very easy to use, save and re-use.

3) Lookah TV
This website is a go to site to avoid searching on teacher tube or you tube for how to instructional videos online. There are a large collection of clips that give good instructional help and this could be an excellent first port of call when trying a new program or application.
Say you wanted to use do something exciting with 'microsoft word'...impossible you say! Probably, but Lookah TV has a clip that says you're wrong!

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