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Feb 28, 2012

15 Tools to Help You Go Paperless

 15 Tools to Help You Go Paperless

Kelly Tenkely | Teaching.monster.com

Schools are notorious for enormous copy budgets. Between parent/home communications, student work, and staff communication, schools are drowning in a sea of paper. Transforming the school into a paperless environment is eco-friendly, budget friendly, and can increase productivity. With all of the free online options, going green is easier than ever.  

Paperless students and teachers:

1. Spelling City www.spellingcity.com

Spelling city is a free online environment where students can practice and study spelling words. Instead of handing out a paper spelling list at the beginning of each week, give your students a link to Spelling City where they can find the weeks spelling words. Sign up as a Spelling City teacher (free) and enter spelling lists. Students can get onto Spelling City and find spelling lists by searching the teacher name. Spelling city will teach your students the spelling words by saying the word and then using it in a sentence. Students can practice their spelling words by playing games with the words, there are several games to choose from. Spelling city will even give practice spelling tests to students. For a small fee, teachers can set up record books and give the final spelling test online. Put an end to copies of spelling lists and send your kids online. You will save trees and students will get great practice with their words.

2. Tut Pup www.tutpup.com

Every month teachers all over the world print out hundreds of fact practice worksheets. Tut Pup is an outstanding free math-fact practice website. It is a competition between students from around the world. As students practice their math facts, they can see how they measure up with other students, motivating them to work at their math-facts and speed up. Students are matched up with other students from around the world where they play fact games and compete in real time to see who best knows their stuff. There is nothing more motivating than a little healthy competition! The site doesn’t collect any personal information from students, they are provided generic login information. Tut Pup helps students build math fact skills in the areas of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, algebra, or a mixture of those skills. Tut Pup is highly motivating, takes into account different learning levels, and builds a variety of math-fact skills. Each student can work on math facts at their ability level. Lower level students are engaged and feel successful, and higher level students are challenged. This site will have your students asking, “can I play this game at home too?” When have you ever had a student ask to practice math facts at home? Students truly love the competition of this site and get the added benefit of increasing their math-fact recall skills without running up the copy quotient.

3. Popling www.popling.net

Popling’s motto is “Learning without studying”. This website allows you to create virtual flash cards that pop up on a computer screen every few minutes (teachers determine how often) while students work on the computer. Classroom computers can be set up with Poplings about any subject. As students are working on the computers they can also be practicing math facts, vocabulary, geography, etc. These flash cards are a great way for students to study without creating sets and sets of 3×5 notecards.

4. Knowtes www.knowtes.com

Knowtes is a flash card based learning community that allows teachers and students to build flash card decks online. The flash cards can then be studied online. When cards are added to a Knowtes deck, it becomes due at optimized intervals. The Knowtes ‘Adaptive Learning Engine’ adjusts how frequently cards should be studied based on how well students know them. Knowtes decks can be easily shared between teachers, students, and peer groups. Each student gets their own study room where they can organize their decks and study. The study rooms include helpful tips for studying. Cards can be created with text, images, audio, and video. This is a great way for students to study sans 3×5 note card. These are truly smart flash cards, if a student consistently gets an answer wrong, it requires them study it more than those that they consistently get right. What paper note card can do that?

Continue reading 4-9 on the next page…

Create Self-Grading Quiz Using Google Docs (2 of 3)

32 ways to use Google Apps in the classroom

Create Self-Grading Quiz Using Google Docs (1 of 3)

Part 2 Create a multiplechoice quiz using Powerpoint

Creating Multiplechoice quiz using Powerpoint 2007

How to make Interactive Quizzes with PowerPoint

1: An E-Learning Design Framework

Best Free eLearning Tools of 2010

Go to http://www.cogentys.com/custom-courses/ to learn the 5 secrets the video production the studios don't want you to know.

Distance Learning Online: A New Media Presentation

The Virtual Classroom How to Prepare and Plan for Online Teaching

Teaching In The Virtual Classroom

Models Of Blended Learning

Feb 25, 2012

What Do You Mean Evernote Could Get Better?

Thanks to Steven Andersonat for this handy tool.

What Do You Mean Evernote Could Get Better?

Last time I wrote about the way I organize myself completely changed for the better with Evernote. Really, I can't talk enough about this program and the endless possibilities there are for it. (Just look at the comments from that post.)

In that post I gave a few resources for learning about Evernote and even fewer with how to use it in the classroom. Well, lots of people have sent me lots of great resources and I wanted to follow-up and post some more. These are sites, lists and ideas all for using Evernote for your personal use or in the classroom.
Get Productive Fast With Evernote- Mark Stout contacted me about this great eBook he created about getting started with Evernote and then some of the more advanced features like integrating IFTTT.com. At $10 bucks its a bargain for truly understanding everything there is about Evernote.
10 Tips For Using Evernote Effectively- This recent article from ReadWriteWeb was a great addition to my Evernote resources. They covered things I hadn't even considered and once I discovered them I became even more productive.
The Secret Weapon- A few weeks ago I was pining on Twitter about my overflowing inbox and how I wish I could funnel everything through Evernote. That is when Dean Shareski sent me The Secret Weapon. In it you learn how to take control of your inbox and use Evernote as the place to deal with email. This was the ultimate for me in getting my organization under control.
The Evernote-Livescribe Connection- Last year at ISTE I was able to get my hands (finally) on a Livescribe pen. (Basically, it records the movement of the pen and the audio around the pen. Perfect for teaching, learning, notes, meetings, etc). Well, you can import your pencasts into Evernote. So you have your notes and audio all in one place. Think about this for student conferencing or remediation activities.
100 Different Uses For Evernote- This article delivers what the title says.
Trunk For Evernote- There are lots of other programs that can help Evernote become the center of your universe. Apps, sites and and more are listed here.
Evernote In The Classroom-In this post you really see how one educator uses it in their classroom.
Evernote As A 1-1 Reading Conferencing Tool-This one I save for last because it is my favorite. My good friend Russ, has been using Evernote for a while now. In this post he lays out exactly how he uses Evernote and notebooks conferencing with his students. While this is in a Language Arts classroom, the ideas here are universal and can be applied anywhere.

So there are 8 more resources for understanding, learning about and using
Evernote. Remember, Evernote is completely free. You can use it on as many computers, phones and tablets as you want. Make sure you read my first post about how I was using it and check out the comments too to see how others were using it as well.

Do you have any more resources to share? Hit up the comments below!

New Discussion Option for Google Docs Presentations

Free Resources and Lesson Plans for Teaching with Technology shared by Richard Byrne
New Discussion Option for Google Docs Presentations

Last March Google introduced threaded discussion comments to Google Documents. That feature is great for suggestion edits or asking questions when you're collaborating on a document with other writers. I have used the feature for that quite a bit over the last year. Yesterday, Google announced that threaded discussion comments is an option for Google Docs Presentations.

Using the discussions option, collaborators can comment on a part of a slide or an entire slide. Discussions will allow collaborators to have threaded conversations in the margins of a presentation. By including the @ symbol before a collaborator's name you can reply directly to that person. Discussion comments can be tied to a specific part of a slide. Discussion comments can be removed when the suggested edit has been completed. Learn more in the video below.

Applications for Education
Discussions in Google Docs Presentations could be a great tool to use when editing students' presentations. You can tie comments directly to a part of a slide to suggest to students that they change color schemes, font size, or resizing an image.

Free Tools For Teachers- How to Make Video

Free Technology For Teachers- Richard Byrne's Blog

Friday, February 24, 2012

Explore Russia With the Russian Street View Gallery

Earlier this week Google added Street View imagery of Russia to Google Maps. Now you can explore historic landmarks in Moscow and St. Petersburg from a ground level perspective. Using the Google Maps API, Keir Clarke at Google Maps Mania has pulled together many of the Street View images to create the Russian Street View Gallery.
View Larger Map

Applications for Education
Just as with other Street View images, the
Russian Street View Gallery is a step or two better than having students just look at static pictures of the places that they're learning about. The next time you're teaching a lesson about the Russian Revolution use the Street View imagery to them explore the grounds of the Winter Palace.

Feb 24, 2012

Manage Your Nerves

A Framework For Designing Blended Programs

Blended Learning Strategies: Selecting the Best Instructional Method

The Presentation Secrets By Steve Jobs

Here Is A Letter From Russel Stannard I Got Yesterday

I'm sure you'll find a lot of useful info for you.

Hi Lyudmila Anikina,

Welcome to the www.teachcertrainingvideos.com newsletter. Lots of new videos and  news about the winner of the competition for the IATEFL Scholarship.
My big thanks go to Cambridge University Press again for sponsoring the newsletter and helping to keep everything free. We have now reached over 7000 subscribers.  If you want to sponsor the newsletter or advertise on my website, then please contact me.
Follow my tweets and recommendations on Facebook
Our Sponsors
Click on the Cambridge link if you want to find out about the 10 hour professional development course that they are running. It is organised by  University of Cambridge ESOL examinations and  Cambridge University Press.

Vocaroo Audio Tool

This has got to be the easiest audio tool on the internet.  Press the button, make your recording, press another button and send it to whoever. They have updated the interface and made it even easier to use. You can embed the recordings too. Great tool if you want to get your students doing recordings outside of the classroom and then sending them to their teacher.


SnagIt is both a screen capture tool and image capture. It allows you to grab images from anywherea and at the click of the button place them in a Word document and PDF file. You can create rollover effects, so great for vocabulary exercises and worksheets. These 2 sets of videos will take you through everything
Image Capture
Video Capture

Learn how to use Camtasia

For a limited amount of time, I am making available a full set of Camtasia training videos. This is the tool I use to make all the videos and you can watch and listen as I take you through the tool in detail. There are 24 videos in total
You can get a 30 trial version of Camtasia here
You can also buy the product at a special discounted rate from TTV.com. The normal retail price is $299 but TTV.com are able to offer an educational discount and an additional discount and so the price is $170. Click below for more information

My Talk in Luxembourg

I was recently working in Luxembourg and presented 10 great tools for language teachers.  The handout has proved very popular with over 7000 downloads. Here it is

What is the number one video set?

The most popular set of videos at the moment is lyricstraining.com. It allows you to learn the lyrics of songs interactively. There is content in many languages.  It is a lot of fun and very popular with students because there are so many modern songs on the site. It doesn't work in all countries as it depends on the agreement that individual countries have with youTube regarding the copyright of songs but it is fabulous. Watch these videos and in 5 minutes you will understand why.

IATEFL Scholarship Scheme

First of all thanks. In total we collected nearly $400 and I added another $200. So it meant the winner got $600 towards the IATEFL Glasgow Conference. The winner was Erika Osvath from Hungary. I will be presenting the money to her at the IATEFL conference and I am hoping that next month she will have a blog post ready that will include information about her winning idea.  I hope to run the same scheme next year.


If you are interested, there was an interview about my work on the blog site Wandering Educator. It includes a video interview held in Turkey where I talk about the "Conncted Classroom"

Study with me

Lots of travelling coming up. I will be at TESOL Spain, IATEFL in Glasgow, Graz in Austria, Bologna Italy and  TESOL Greece as the plenary speaker and then a visit to Crete. So if you see me please come up and say hello.
Please contact me if you would like me to run a workshop or talk.
If you would like to study with me, then I am the programme leader for the ICT modules on the MA in TESOL at the  University of Warwick You can find out more information here

I hope some of the videos were useful and please please spread the word. Sorry about the typos but I do everything myself  and my editing skills are not very good!

Russell stannard
Twitter   http://twitter.com/#!/russell1955

Take a look at the sponsor's ad


They are running some development courses. It is free to click!!!!

Feb 23, 2012

12 Essentials For Technology Integration

Making Videos on the Web

The Super Book Of Web Tools For Educators

Tech Skills for Teachers- From Schrock's Blog

Basic Skills
ISTE National Educational Technology Standards for Teachers (NETS*T) (2008)
         Facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity

Welcome To Kathy Schrock's Blog!

This page gathers all of the Bloomin' Apps projects in one place!
Each of the images has clickable hotspots and includes suggestions for
Google, iPad, Android, and Web 2.0 applications
to support each of the levels of Bloom's Revised Taxonomy.

21-st Century Pedagogy

So what is 21-st century pedagogy?

Feb 19, 2012

Flexible Learning Paths

Use digital tools to provide students with flexible learning paths to meet their unique learning styles. Note: The image below is powered by Thinglink. Click on any smaller image to jump to the interactive version and find resources

EFL Classroom 2.0

Welcome to this site full of resources for EFL teachers using web 2.0

EFL Classroom 2.0
“All the news and "new" on EFL Classroom 2.0” RSS
Curated by David Deubelbeiss


Tag Clouds

Feb 11, 2012

The learner-centred classroom (British Council Webinar)

Submitted by Rob Lewis on 25 October, 2011 - 13:27

Date: 25 October 2011
Time: 1200 UK time (check what time this is in your country)
Theme: This webinar will explore different aspects of learner-centred teaching. What does it mean to be 'learner-centred'? Why is it important? We will examine some of the practical issues. What problems might arise? Is learner-centred teaching possible in all contexts? We will consider these and other questions, and also introduce some ideas which can help teachers to become more learner-centred.
Watch a recording of the webinar: You can watch the webinar (just under 70 mins) here: http://britishcouncil.adobeconnect.com/p3kcoz8nz99/
About the speaker: Sue Sheerin, formerly Director of the University of Sussex Language Institute, is an educational consultant with many years’ experience in language teaching, teacher training and academic management.

Featured blog from January (British Council)

This month, our featured blogger is Sandy Millin. We enjoyed her entry 'Motivation Stations', which deals with a situation many teachers will be familiar with: how to keep students on the 'intermediate plateau' motivated.
In this entry, she explains how she adapted some materials to create an engaging discussion lesson. You can find all the notes and more background here - easy for you to pick up and use in your own classes: http://sandymillin.wordpress.com/2012/01/27/motivation-stations/
Hope you find it useful!


Watch This Webinar By British Council Off Line

Using social networks and media to support our continuing professional development
Date: 19 January 2012
Theme: Many teachers have found that social networks and media can provide valuable support for their continuing professional development. However, knowing where to start can be a problem. Facebook, Twitter and the blogosphere aren't always easy places to move in and it's easy to feel overwhelmed by the multitude of posts that appear and disappear in rapid succession. How can we make sense of them and identify the people we can most learn from? How do we set ourselves goals and keep track of where we're going? In this webinar we'll consider practical ways of centring and organising ourselves to make the process a little less chaotic.
Watch a recording of the webinar: You can watch a recording of the webinar (around 70 mins) here: http://britishcouncil.adobeconnect.com/p4ptr7ueuj2/
About the speaker: Ann Foreman is a classroom teacher and teacher trainer based in Bilbao, Spain. Her interests include finding the best ways of using new technology in the classroom and coming to terms with the changing needs and aspirations of learners in today’s digital world. Ann manages the TeachingEnglish Facebook page and works on developing new teaching and learning applications such as What kind of teacher are you?

Feb 8, 2012

Online tools and resources for scientific writing

Posted by Anne on February 1st, 2012
I’m still struggling to teach scientific writing to a diverse group of PhD candidates that I only see occasionally. My latest attempt is to give them a set of online tools to analyze their genre of target texts (published works and their own work in progress), and to tell me how they like what the tools do. These are tools I use myself when I explore a genre to analyze them within the overall corpus of English and present typical collocations. In class we’ll then look at selected texts on one topic comparing different genres (i.e. in a general publication, as opposed to a scientific journal) to determine typical collocations and rhetorical and stylistic devices.
MacMillan Dictionary
handiest online dictionary, with a thesaurus, examples, audio
COCA Corpus of Contemporary American English
BNC British National Corpus (GB)
How are your words generally used in context?
Word cloud generators:
How frequent are key words in a text you read or write? Copy it into a word cloud generator that makes the more frequent words larger. Tips: In Wordle, create strings of words, or multiword units: Edit your text before you copy it in, joining the words you want to keep together with the tilde character: ~ (e.g. “cataclastic~rock”). Also, reduce the word output number (Layout/Maximum words) to simplify.
Just the word
This collocation thesaurus concordancer shows frequency and produces word clouds. Clicking on a given collocation gives you samples from the BNC. (e.g. precipitation)
A set of tools to analyze the text you copy in:
a. Concord Writer
Work in progress: Write text in the window, and your text is dynamically linked to multiple examples as you write.
b. Vocab Profile (BNL)
A published article: Copy in your text, and the tool will output a word list.
Google Ngram Viewer
How has your word been used over time? Has it changed in meaning? Study a word over time based on the word’s occurance in the Google Books library (those published since 1800).
5 modes of search for collocations: find one word (e.g. the missing word in a phrase – e.g. verbs, prepositions, possible modifiers), several words, alternatives in the phrase (so: find a better synonym), and word order (e.g. adverb placement). Follow links to find sample sentences. Caution: the Internet is your database.
If a scientist wants to read just one article on writing a thesis: George Gopen and Judith Swan show that where you place information in a sentence makes a huge difference. Their article The Science of Scientific Writing was originally published in the November-December 1990 issue of American Scientist.
Some excellent websites to surf for university writing skills:
And when in doubt, try a grammar quiz:
Diagnostic grammar quizzes, especially recommended for connectors/ transition words http://www.grammar-quizzes.com/
These are not online tools, but books I recommend for the research library:
  • John M. Swales/ Christine B. Feak: Abstracts and the Writing of Abstracts. The University of Michigan Press 2009.
  • Christine B. Feak/ John M. Swales: Telling a Research Story. Writing a Literature Review. The University of Michigan Press 2009. (The answers to the tasks in these two books are available online.)
  • John M. Swales/ Christine B. Feak: Academic Writing for Graduate Students. Essential Tasks and Skills. Second Edition. The University of Michigan Press 1994/2009. Also get the commentary by same authors: Commentary for Academic Writing for Graduate Students. Essential Tasks and Skills.
  • Rowena Murray: How to Write a Thesis. Open University Press2002/2011.
  • Robert A. Day/ Barbara Gastel: How to Write and Publish a Scientific Paper. Greenwood Press 2006.
  • Michael McCarthy/ Felicity O’Dell: Academic Vocabulary in Use. 50 units of academic vocabulary reference and practice. Self-study and classroom use. Cambridge University Press 2008.
Do you have any resources to add?
PS: There is an online scientific writing tool called Swan, the Scientific Writing Assistant, http://cs.joensuu.fi/swan/. The concept was developed by Jean Luc Lebrun, formerly at Apple and now a scientific communication skills author and trainer. It requires Java version 6.0 or higher, and runs on various operating systems, working on Apple OS 10.6 and higher. I haven’t tried it out yet. Its USP is that it helps you organize your thoughts and content (rather than your language and grammar) by working around the placement of key words.
PPS: Graham Davies created a fantastic online site dedicated to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for Language Teachers, initiated with EC funding in 1999-2000, which he has continued to maintain himself. It contains pretty much everything teachers need in ICT. I’m finding the section on using concordance programs in class and the one on corpus linguistics helpful. It makes me want to take a week off and do nothing but dip into this world, and finally read the books I’ve got on the subject from cover to cover. Graham also keeps a blog.

Feb 6, 2012

Finland's Formula for School Success

Welcome to The Perdue Online Writing Lab (OWL)!

http://owl.english.purdue.edu/ a really fantastic link

Week 5 Tasks

Alas! It's the last fantastic Week 5  on EVO session-2012 with tasks.

My "EVO-2012 -Classdigitools Portfolios" Bundle

My "EVO 2012 - Classdigitools Portfolios" Bundle