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Showing posts from December, 2012

How to Use Technology to Bring Experts in the Field into Your Classroom

Guest speakers always add another dimension to teaching; however, getting an expert to come into your classroom may be a little more challenging. Speakers often have work schedules, travel schedules and other responsibilities to navigate. Educators have class schedules, late starts, parent conferences, etc. to deal with. Sometimes finding the right time to meet is impossible.  Here are a few creative ways to get experts into your classroom, using the power of technology: iTunesU has been available to educators for several years, but many teachers still do not know what the big deal is. iTunes U gives educators the opportunity to download classes and lectures from leading experts and universities all around the country. Do you want to learn more about management? Why not learn from Peter Drucker?  If you are the type of teacher who wants to create your own course, you can use the iTunes U app to do so. Skype is a tool that I have been using in my classroom for several months. In Oct

Share Files with File Dropper

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Have you ever wanted a student to share a file with you and it was too big? Before you scramble to find a flashdrive or create a Dropbox account, there are many ways to solve this problem. Some are time consuming, while others require another username and password to keep track of. Personally, I am not one for usernames and passwords. If this is a problem that you have, you might want to check out a free file hosting sites like  File Dropper . File hosting sites give users the ability to upload a file and share a unique link, when opened will allow another person to download your file. Many hosting sites offer this free service with the agreement that the link to your file will only be active for a limited amount of time. There are many sites like it, but it is probably one of the easiest file hosting sites to use. Simply choose your file and click on Upload File. File Dropper will create a unique URL that you can share with others to download your file. I really like the fact that

Minutes.io

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Everyone loves meetings right? Just kidding. In every meeting, there is at least one note taker. Here's a great site that I learned about from a blog the other day. It's called Minutes.io . Perhaps you can use it in your situation to record meeting minutes. Check it out!

Create Your Own Chat with TodaysMeet

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When snow is in the forecast, it always makes me remember one graduate class that I taught in the middle of February. We had a major snow storm hit the east coast that year and it prevented us from meeting. I had to scramble to "have class" without actually "having class." Many years ago, it was very difficult to come up with some options. I recently stumbled upon an article that mentioned a free back channel site called TodaysMeet . If you are not familiar with what a back channel is, the term was coined to describe everything that is going on in a room without the instructor knowing it. Think about it as passing notes back in our day! In today's world, a back channel isn't necessarily a bad thing. We are creatures of conversation and using a back channel actually enhances and stimulates conversation of a particular topic.   TodaysMeet is a great way to create a temporary chat room  which anyone can join without a username and password. It's been

Using the Internet to Help with Pronounciation

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I know that I say this often, but I love getting the chance to work with other teachers when I teach a graduate class. I almost feel guilty because I learn new ideas every time I teach and I get paid for it! In all seriousness, I do learn many great ideas from my graduate and high school students alike. One of the most recent ideas that I learned about came from one of my students from New Jersey, Christina. She was doing a project for my class and introduced me to a site called Forvo . It is a site that claims that it has "all of the words in the world. Pronounced." She was having her class read a story, which contained many Hebrew words. She decided to use the site to help correctly pronounce the words to her class, so that they would get a better understanding of its meaning and usage. I decided to check it out and found it to be a useful site for any classroom in any subject area. Users have the ability to search through a library of audio files, which offer the corre