Posts filed under ‘Reflect’

Chatmaker

· What is it? What does it do?

o Chatmaker is a site that allows you to make your own chat rooms and easily invite others.

o Chatmaker’s chatroom is extremely easy and instantaneous, which means that people might use it for quick and private communications.

o Plus I really liked that it doesn’t require registration.

o Just type the title of your chatroom in the box on the homepage, and then send the link that is provided in the lower box to the people you want to join. My title was “JHU Cohort.” I then instant messaged my colleagues who looked like they were logged on to elc, but no one got back to me…So needless to say at that time of night, I was the only one in my chatroom, chatting to myself…so sad.

· What are the infrastructure and technical requirements for this tool?

o As long as the site Chatmaker isn’t blocked and you can copy and paste a link, you can chat with anyone!

· How can you use it effectively in instruction?

o This could be so fun for the students to have mystery chatpals either in our own school, another local school, or a school in another state or country!

o I could see a chatroom for students who are all trying to perform the same type of science experiment for the bcps science fair. They could chat about failure, success, and etc.

· What are other education applications for this tool?

o Teachers could create a chatroom with parents, collegues from other schools in the same content area, or even cohort members to discuss numerous topics, concerns, etc.

· What are the limitations and cautions related to use of this tool?

o Not sure if this is blocked on bcps.

o Can’t find any cautions, since one has to be invited to come into the chatroom.

· What are the management considerations for this tool?

o Making sure all invitees can be online at a certain specific time.

o Teaching students proper language and manners when in a chatroom.

June 18, 2008 at 4:01 pm 2 comments

MediaMax/The Linkup

What is it? What does it do?

Media Max is now called The Linkup. The Linkup is a social network for file sharing. According to The Linkup homepage, it is a place to easily send and receive files with friends and store massive amounts of files. Uploaded files can be public or protected files. Basic accounts are free and uses can subscribe (starting at $5.95/month) for accounts with more storage.

What are the infrastructure and technical requirements for this tool?

Uploaded files can be public or protected files. Basic accounts are free and uses can subscribe (starting at $5.95/month) for accounts with more storage. I tried to set up a free account. It was easy to do – all that is needed is a user name, email address, and password. To activate the account, the user has to check her email and click the activation link. When I tried to do this, I got the following message:

We’re sorry but an error has occurred. This error has been logged and The Linkup support has been notified. Please go back and try again to see if the error still exists.

I continued to try, but received the same message each time. I set up a different account using my home email address instead of school address, but I received the same message. Perhaps a paid account would work better.

How can you use it effectively in instruction?

If this site was working properly, teachers could certainly use it to work on common projects and share lessons or resources with each other. At school, it would probably be easier for students to use the shared folder on the BCPS server. If students were working on group projects outside of school, they may be able to use this; however, I do not see it as practical at the elementary school level. Other tools are more readily available and easier to use. Also, we cannot assume at this point that every student has functioning internet access at home. The Linkup may be useful for our group project for this class; however, the site is not working properly at this time. It would be a good place to store videos and photographs because it has a lot of storage capacity.

What are the limitations and cautions related to the use of this tool?

Presently, the obvious limitation is that an error message occurs when trying to activate an account. I think this tool could be very useful for teachers and administrators more than for students.

What are the management considerations for this tool?

One consideration is that this tool requires users to pay monthly fees after the free trial period. The fees would have to come from the school budget unless it was district funded. Other free sites are available such as Write Board that seem more practical.

June 15, 2008 at 9:18 pm Leave a comment

Scrapblog

What is it? What does it do?

Scrapblog allows users to create scrapbooks by importing photos. The scrapbook pages look beautiful, just like regular scrapbook pages that someone might spend hours creating. On Scrapblog, you can simply drag and drop photographs into shapes and boarders. Users can choose a theme for each page or use blank pages. elements suchs as shapes, borders, transitions, and music can be added. It is very easy to use.

Wat are the infrastructure and technical requirements for this tool? An internet connection and your digital phots are all that is needed.

How can you use it effectively in instruction?

Scrapblog can be used in many of the same ways as PhotoStory. Students can create on-line scrapbooks of field trips, school projects, or special activities and send them to their parents or do class presentations. Students could also use Scrapblog to create scrapbooks of different periods in time, geographical regions, or settings from a story. Many classroom applications are possible.

What are the limitations and cautions related to use of this tool? Check the policy regarding posting students’ photographs. Make sure students did not opt-out.

What are the management considerations for this tool? It is very easy to use. Teachers will need to monitor students’ photographs, help them download photos on the computer, set up blog or projector for sharing.

June 13, 2008 at 11:38 am 6 comments


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