Tag Archives: web 2.0

Prezi zooms past 10 Million, releases PowerPoint Import | Prezi

28 Jun

Prezi zooms past 10 Million, releases PowerPoint Import | Prezi.


Upload your Power Points into Prezi


More Spanish: Five for Friday: 5 Web 2.0 tools to record oral communication

28 Jun

More Spanish: Five for Friday: 5 Web 2.0 tools to record oral communication.


Use for speaking tools

181 Google Tricks That Will Save You Time in School

28 Jun

181 Google Tricks That Will Save You Time in School [Updated] – Online Colleges.

Lots of Great Stuff!!  Here’s a run-down:

#1-35   Search Tips
#36-47  Education
#48-65  Google Docs
#46-95  Gmail
#96-107  Calendar
#108-120 Google Mobile
#121-154  Google Chrome
#155-165  Google Books
#166-170  Google Voice
#171-181  Google Services and Apps


Online comics for WL class

3 Jun

Assigning creation of an online is a great way to assess students understanding of vocabulary and structure.  Get them writing in a fun and imaginative way.  It is something that we do occasionally in the computer lab, but it always an option in their homework Matriz.

Always make sure to offer a checklist or short rubric of what should be included (current vocab, grammar structures, questions…).  Most can be emailed to the teacher or printed out.
I have also taught the students to do a print screen then paste into Paint, crop around the comic and save as a .jpg.  The next step would be to post it on their wiki page.

Here are my favorites.  Let me know if you know of others:

Make Beliefs Comix: My favorite.  Can print or email.  Scroll to the bottom for lots of resources and free printables!

Marvel Create Your Own ComicSave as pdf file or print

Strip generator: finished comic can be emailed or printed

Comic Master:  Graphic Novel creator.  Registration required.

Domo Animate: animated comic generator

Here are also some comics in Spanish that you can use for reading and vocabulary practice:

Tiras Cómicas: from Zachary Jones

Gaturro: Comic strips from Argentina

Happy comic making!



Voice Thread in World Language

18 Apr

        A new site that I am just beginning to use is Voice Thread.  It is a site that we have begun using to collaborate with a classroom in Maryland.  I see immediately that it can be used for speaking practice and assessment purposes.  Our students have uploaded pictures of themselves and recorded themselves speaking just by clicking on the “Comment” button under their picture.  Once their Voice Thread is finished, other students can listen to it and make comments back.  The comments can be made with a microphone or students can just type in a response.  There are even options for phoning in a response, uploading a prerecorded comment, or using a web cam to make a response.  I am excited to find out what other uses Voice Thread has.  

      There are World Language teachers using Voice Thread for speaking practice in the form of dubbing.  The teacher uploads a short video on the current unit, students use Audacity or another recording program to record themselves making a conversation to go with the clip.  When finished, they upload it as a comment.  It works best if the video has no words.  You can do a search on You Tube.  The Vancouver Film School channel has lots of them!  I hope to give this a try before the end of the school year.

     Let me know if you have a cool use for Voice Thread!


Everyday WL class techy tools

7 Apr

There are some online tools that I use in my class for different purposes.  Here are my favorites:

Online Stopwatch:A simple timer that will do a countdown or a stopwatch.  Set the time, use the optional music, hear a bell when time is up.
It works great when you have different stations set up to give the students a signal of when to move on (a gallery walk, etc.).   Project it to let the students peek at how much time they have left.
I also use it when I tell the students they have 10 minutes and want to stick to it…
Class Tools also has a great timer.  I am just stubborn enough to stick with the one I started with.

Dice Server:
A very simple concept.  Click on the page and roll the dice.
As a class we have used it to practice verbs.  I have on the board a list of 6 subjects with the numbers 1-6 in front of them.  There is also a list of infinitives with the numbers 1-6 in front of them. Example:

1- Yo                                             1- hablar
2- Nosotras                                2- vivir
3- Ricardo                                  3- comer
4- Ellos                                         4- tener
5- Tú                                             5- ir
6- Mis amigos                           6- jugar

Once the dice is rolled, the first die tells you which subject to use, the second tells you what infinitive to conjugate.  Using the example above, A roll of a 2 & 4 would mean the subject is Nosotras and the verb is tener.  Students write their answer on the whiteboard, I count down from 10 (giving all students ample time) and they show me their answers.  Great check up on how they are doing!
I am sure there are many other possibilities.
You can also give the URL to the students and they can use their phones to do the dice rolling, although I prefer the movement of the real dice in partner games.

Random Name Selector:
When you want to do some speaking practice, this site works kind of like drawing out the Popsicle sticks with names on them in elementary classes (I have those too).  It does a little more than the sticks could though.  You can type in your student names once then have them any time you want!  Once you have a list of names you can get a URL to bookmark or an embed code to put in your class page to use over and over again.
As a bonus, once the picker has chosen a name, you can hit a timer.  For example, when you are doing presentations.  Choose who goes next with the picker, click on the number of minutes were the maximum or minimum.
Or, maybe you just want your students to speak on a topic for a minute or two.  Project the page and the visual helps them get their timing right.

Another similar site is the Team Maker.  Type or copy and paste names into the site to have teams randomly picked.  You can choose the names of the teams, and your output can be in web page or in Excel.  I suggest you have your classes typed into an Excel sheet to copy and paste when needed.  Those lists come in handy at times anyway.

My favorite everyday online site is Quizlet.    

We go over our vocabulary every day.  We begin with Spanish to English flashcards.  After a couple of days we switch it to English to Spanish.  To avoid students blurting out the answer before others can even process it, we do a 3 count.  The 3 count can be a mixture of snaps, claps, stomps, etc.  I let the students pick the 3 count sequence before we start.  Once they hear the word, they do the 3 count in unison (they do it-participation points count on it).  That’s the other awesome thing about Quizlet flashcards…there is audio for every word, and it is said correctly in Spanish (or French)  and in English because you set the language for each side of the flashcard.
Practicing with Quizlet is also a choice on their homework grid.  I have each of them make a free account at Quizlet, then join my group (based on what level they are in).  If they do any sort of practice, I can see it on my dashboard.  There have some choices of practice activities or practice games.
Be sure to make groups for each of your levels in your own account.  When you make a set of flashcards, add it to the appropriate set.

Just a few of my favorites I thought I would share.  Enjoy!


WL Assessment with Web 2.0

1 Apr

Speaking exams always gave me headaches.  One student at a time coming to your desk, the rest of the students busy taking a written exam or doing something else.  I didn’t like the fact that I could not monitor the students doing the written part because it took the whole class time to listen to students speaking parts one by one.

I was very excited when I found Clear’s Audio Drop Box.  Scroll down on the page to see the Drop Box link, but check out everything else, too.  Lots of great stuff there!  My procedure for exams now is to have one day in the computer lab and one day in the classroom.  In the computer lab they do the listening and speaking part.  In the classroom we do the writing, reading and culture.

I have a wiki page set up for the speaking and listening parts.  On the speaking exam page, there are 4-5 prompts and the audio drop box.  In front of the keyboard is an index card telling the students which 2 prompts they must address.  When they are ready they click on the audio drop box, type in their name, and perform their speaking exam.  Once they have spoken they can listen to the audio over again, then decide to send it or delete it and start over.  The audio clips come to me on a page provided by Michigan State’s Clear site.  I listen to them later and score them.  I have heard other teachers are doing the same thing with Google Voice.  I went to the site and was immediately confused.  I sense that someone needs to walk me through it.

The listening part is even simpler.  I put a link to the audio clip they must listen to on the wiki page.  Below the audio link is an embedded Google Form with their questions.  They can listen to the clip as many times as needed, then they click Submit to send me their answers. (Don’t forget to make one of the question “What is your name?”).  Back in my Google Docs page, their answers are saved spreadsheet style.  Google has another trick for you to use with the spreadsheet.

While your spreadsheet with the student’s answers is open, click on Insert then script.  Type in the search bar “Flubaroo”.  It is an amazing time saver!  Flubaroo grades the student answers for you.  Click on this Flubaroo video to see how to create your form and use Flubaroo.  Here is the user guide with step by step instructions.

Google forms can also be used on parts of the exam that are multiple choice.  Grade them with Flubaroo and some of the grading is already done!  I have also used them for quizzes and for feedback when we try a new site or activity to get the student’s thoughts.

Google forms are also a great way to hold students accountable for assigned collaboration.  We collaborate with a couple of different schools, one in San Jacinto and recently with one in Maryland.  Students will occasionally be assigned as homework or in the lab to respond to prompts made to the students, and also to reply to individuals from a different school.  To keep them honest and save a little grading time, I put a Google Form into a wiki page and they tell me which topics they answered and which students they replied to.  I just go to the spreadsheet to see who has completed this.  This way, when I am reading through what they have written, I can enjoy the reading and not have to be thinking about grading.

Just one more way Web 2.0 is making things easier.  I know there are many other sites that are useful for testing and grading.  Let me know what you like to use.


Interact with other classrooms

23 Feb

I have tried several different sites for collaboration between students this year.

The most interesting part to me has been the reaction by my students.  We are collaborating with a classroom from San Jacinto, California (we are in Bay City, Michigan).  Many of my students have loved it and a few are indifferent about it.  I have some students who are still technophobic, they make a big deal out of HAVING to do technology in Spanish class.  The ones I am most confused by though, are the ones who are annoyed that we use many different types of technology and many different online venues.  I suppose I should not assume that all students like to have an eclectic experience…

Currently I am using Collaborize Classroom. It is very easy to organize classes and create discussions and polls.  Discussions and polls can be assigned to everyone or just one group very quickly.  When you are finished with a discussion or poll, you close it out.  The nice thing is that does not mean it is gone forever.  It goes to a new folder for you to review and out of the student view.  The student create their own accounts and you accept them into the class.

Another one we are trying, right now on our own, is Diigo Education.  My favorite part about it immediately was adding students into separate classes without their email addresses.  This site is not a discussion site.  So far we have used it for research.  When we are in the lab I can have the students bookmark the sites they are using.  It allows me to see where they are going, and also gives some references to me and the entire class.
I have not used Diigo to it’s fullest potential yet.  I would love to see how others are using it.  Here is what Diigo’s site says:   “Diigo is much more than a simple web annotation or social bookmarking service — it is a new kind of online research and collaborative research tool that integrates tags and folders, highlighting and clipping, sticky notes, and group-based collaboration, enabling a whole new process of online knowledge management, learning, and teaching in the information age.”

Schoology is a new one I/we are trying out.  I think it will be a great discussion area because it looks and acts like Facebook.  The big difference being that each assignment is a new page, so the information doesn’t disappear.  Setting up was easy.  I created a class and was given a code to give the students.  When they put the code in, they were directed to my class to make an account.
Here is what Schoology says about their site: “With Schoology, educators can do things as simple as posting assignments, quizzes and links to additional resources or as sophisticated as conducting online courses, providing one-on-one remediation, or hosting discussions.”

My new adventure will be with Diipo.  It is on my summer list of things to do.  It is “social networking for your class”.  It looks VERY promising.

We also have a wiki page, BCC Spanish, that we use when we go to the lab or to post their work.  I have found it is easier to put all of their directions for their lab days on the wiki.  It comes in very handy for those students who are absent or do not finish their work in the lab.

My final tip for using so many different sites online, is to make a document for them to save their passwords.  Ours is called “My Spanish Passwords“.  I have this template on our wiki page.  The very first time I assign a password (which is always their textbook online), I have them open the document and type in their password.  The template is a table with 3 columns.  the first column is the name of the site, 2nd column for user name, 3rd column is for their password.  they save this in their H-drive.  Before I began doing this I would be asked incessantly for their passwords each time we went to the lab.  In some cases, like for Photo Peach, we use a common password.  That way all of their work is on one page to check.  I made a class Google account just for this reason.



Using QR codes in school

15 Feb

For now I am using QR codes quite simply in my Spanish class.  I have high hopes on what to use them for. I use the Kaywa QR Code generator.  It is as simple as putting in some text or a URL and clicking “generate”.  There are lots of QR code generators out there.  A Google search will produce a ton of them.  One option is Snap.vu which allows you to track how many times your code has been scanned.  QR Stuff allows you to use several types of data and output options.  You can even make your code in color.

I post print outs of QR Codes in my classroom.  Right now the ones I have posted are links to Quizlet flashcards.  I love Quizlet!  We go through the current flashcards almost daily.  It has eliminated the need to use class time (or my own time) to create flashcards.  Besides the obvious flashcard use, it has practice and games for the students.  They can also download a set of flashcards to print the flashcards in various formats.  When they scan the QR code from my print out, they can bookmark it on their phone to find again later.  Make sure to tell students to download a QR Code scanner to their phone.

There is a great Google slide show that many people have contributed to called 45 Interesting Ways to Use QR Codes in the classroom.  The activities range from scavenger hunts, sharing upcoming events, link to added practice or video tutorials, virtual tours and much more.  I even learned how to make a QR code with my personal information.  I did this one at Jumpscan:

My QR code

QR Treasure Hunt generator allows you to easily create a treasure hunt for school.

This video illustrates how QR Codes are used to enhance learning opportunities for students at McGuffey School District in Claysville, PA.

e-school News has a great article called “Using QR Codes for School Communications“.  Imagine putting QR codes into the newsletter or posting them in the office for parents to scan the school lunch menu, sports schedule, fliers for upcoming events, etc.

This is obviously one of my summer projects.  By then, I am sure to hear of more great ways to incorporate them.  It’s one of those things I am excited to use, but want to make sure I use it to benefit learning, not just because it’s so darn cool.  :)~


One day in the computer lab

9 Feb

I shared with participants in my presentation at the “World Language Mini Conference” at SVSU some of the sites I like to use when we are in the lab for a day.

Here is what I came up with, I know there are a lot more out there:

This is a site that I built a couple of summers ago for the Bay Arenac ISD WL teachers.  I keep it updated when I find new things.

With PhotoPeach students can create a rich slideshow in seconds. They add in background music, captions, and comments easily.   This is one of those sites where I have a log in and share it with them.  I use a common password, one I do not use outside of class.  Since they all log in with my user name and password, all of their shows are on my page for me to check out quickly.

This site is great for editing and commenting on videos.  I have heard some teachers say they upload videos for the students to dub in their target language, I have to try that…  It can be a great collaboration tool.

This is great to take polls or practice simple structures.  You can ask “What are you going to do this weekend?” and have the students answer in the target language on a sticky note.  Here is an example.

Students upload an image and make it speak.  Be sure to show an example before going to the lab.  It is also helpful for the students to write their script ahead of time.

Students create nice comics easily on any topic.  They have to print them out or I have them do a screenshot, paste it into Paint, crop, save as a jpg then put it on their wiki page.

Create and subtitle a movie.  Drag scenes into the queue, then type away! Students will need to email it to you.

Lots of fun stuff.  I like the trading card maker and the badge maker.

These are some of my favorites for students to create something.  We also do a lot of collaboration work in the lab, which will be the topic for another day.

Gracias, Penny

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