On a recent post of mine – Web 2.0 – The Top Sites Every Teacher Should Know About, I detailed websites that teachers can put their students on to allow them to navigate their own learning. In this follow-up post, I will be introducing sites that will help allow you to “work smarter, not harder.”
The following is a list of the top sites I recommend you visit, as well as a brief description of what each has to offer. Each site listed below is FREE OF CHARGE (although many also have a paid option). For several of the sites listed, I will also be following up with an individual post, to get a deeper look into how I use them in my classroom.
Pinterest – If you are a teacher, and you aren’t addicted to Pinterest, then I must assume one thing- you haven’t heard of it yet! Pinterest is a content sharing service that allows members to “pin” images, videos and other objects to a virtual pinboard. It includes all the standard social networking features like the ability to follow friends, and share pins with them. The best part is since your boards are on the cloud, you can access them from any device. (Check out Edudemic’s- Teacher’s Guide to Pinning)
Dropbox – Where would I be without my Dropbox account? I would be looking frantically around for my lost USB drive of course! Luckily, thanks to DropBox, that is now a thing of the past. Dropbox is a free service that lets you upload and bring your photos, docs, and videos anywhere and share them easily. They even have an app that you can access all your files from, without ever having to store them locally on your devices…. YES! (Tip: DropBox Tips and Tricks on Mashable)
Edmodo – Edmodo is a great place for kids to learn, but it’s also a great place for teachers to learn too. Teachers are able to join Groups in the same way that students are able to join Groups. There are tons of great groups out there, with people sharing excellent ideas and resources. So be sure to join in on the collaboration. (Edmodo CheatSheet: Posted on Educatorstechnology.com)
Teachers Pay Teachers – Probably the biggest time-saver out there when it comes to planning. Why reinvent the wheel, when someone has already created it? Teachers Pay Teachers is a site for educators to buy, sell, and share their original resources. There are tons of free resources, as well as many great paid options. They have even started to accept PO’s as of last year.
Donorschoose.org – “Teaching: The only profession where you steal supplies from home and bring them to work.” Well DonorsChoose has come to the rescue. DonorsChoose.org is an online charity that makes it easy to help students in need through school donations. Teachers simply use points that they earn (initially you get 3 points just for signing up) to go shopping on selected vendor sites. After writing up a quick and painless proposal, your project goes lives on the site. Then donors who visit the site fund your projects and they are mailed directly to your school! It really is that easy.
Edutopia – A wonderful resource for all things EdTech. From their site: The George Lucas Educational Foundation is dedicated to improving the K-12 learning process by documenting, disseminating, and advocating innovative, replicable, and evidence-based strategies that prepare students to thrive in their future education, careers, and adult lives.
Edudemic – This site is one of the leading educational technology sites on the web today. Their goal is to: connect teachers, administrators, students, and just about everyone else with the best technology on the planet. This site is full of amazing resources, ideas, and is always introducing new and exciting things.
eduClipper – Set up similar to Pinterest, eduClipper is a platform that allows educators to safely explore, share, and contribute to a library of educational content. Such a great and easy resource to use. (Check out the information PDF from their site)
SmartExchange – A collaborative hosting site where you can find lesson plans and resources for your SMART Board. It’s so much easier to integrate technology, when someone else has done all the work for you.
LearnZillion – An educational program aligned to the Common Core Standards, LearnZillion aims to provide thousands of resources to explain the standards and equip students for success. It has easy to follow videos which I love to use on the SmartBoard to reinforce concepts.
MasteryConnect: Another site that is aligned to Common Core Standards. MasterConnect makes it simple to track and analyze the CCSS, as well as other elements of student performance. It even allows you to easily search by subject and standard.
Evernote: If you have the worst short-term memory, like me, this is the site for you )also an app). Capture great ideas, photos, recordings, or just about anything else on your Evernote account, access it anywhere, and keep it organized. A must-have tool for lesson planning (or life-planning).
Thinglink – ThingLink is a free and easy to use digital tool that allows users to turn any image into an interactive graphic. A user can create multiple “hot spots” on specific parts of an image turning that image into a multimedia launcher. This includes adding video, recording audio or providing a link to another website with the click of a button! Endless possibilities.
Prezi – Prezi is a cloud based presentation software (meaning nothing is stored locally on your computer) that is a cross between whiteboards and slides. It features a zoomable canvas, making for a fun and visually captivating presentation. Much more exciting than a simple Powerpoint sideshow. I have used Prezi for the past two years for my Back to School Night Presentations to spice things up a bit!
Glogster – I have used Glogster both in my classroom with my students, and professionally when giving PD’s to fellow teachers. Glogster is another exciting way to present information as an alternative to PowerPoint. “Glogs” are online multimedia posters that use text, photos, videos, graphics, sounds, drawing, and more. It is super easy to use and the possibilities are truly endless! (From my PD Presentation on Glogster)
Remind101 – This is my first year using Remind101 and I can’t imagine going a year without it. Remind101 is a safe, free way for teachers to text message students and keep in touch with parents. I use it only to contact my parents, since my students are so young. What I like most about it is that all numbers (yours and theirs) remain anonymous, and that they are not able to reply to any texts you send out. You can also schedule texts to go out at a later date and time.
Class Dojo – This site is so cute, the monsters are reason enough to visit it. Class Dojo is behavior management software that helps teachers improve behavior in their classrooms quickly and easily. It also captures and generates data on behavior that teachers can share with parents and administrators. Did I mention the monsters are adorable?
QRstuff – I love everything to do with QR Codes (so you can expect a follow-up on this one). This site is easy to use and you’ll have QR Codes generated in no time flat.
FutureMe Future Me.org- allows you to send yourself an email time capsule at any date up to 30 years in the future. Would be great for students or teachers to do at the beginning of the year for goal setting, or at the beginning of a new unit.
- Web 2.0 – The Top Sites Every Teacher Should Know About (mszuluaga.wordpress.com)
- The Biggest EdTech Trends: What Teachers Really Think – Edudemic – Edudemic (edudemic.com)