Wednesday, August 04, 2010
15 Free Tech Tools for Teachers
The web is a great place for teachers to find tech tools for use inside and outside the classroom. There are now dozens of sites that offer free course authoring tools, tutorial and quiz makers, blogging platforms, gradebooks, and social applications that have been designed with the teacher in mind. Here are 15 free tech tools to explore in your spare time.
WiZiQ - More than 70,000 teachers use this site to share tutorials, teach classes online, and build visibility in the education community. WiZiQ also makes it easy to create and grade tests online and find students to teach.
LearnCentral - LearnCentral is an Elluminate site where teachers can connect and share with other educators. The site can also be used to create free courses, host live web conferences, and listen to previously recorded lectures and meetings.
Sclipo - K-12 teachers can open a free web academy on Sclipo. The academy can include an online library, tutorials for students, online courses, and other learning materials.
CourseLab - This free e-learning authoring tool can be used to create media-rich online courses. CourseLab also works well for creating assessments, quizzes, exams, surveys, libraries, and demonstrations.
BookBuilder - BookBuilder is a unique online tool that allows users to create and publish free digital books. The site would work well for any teacher interested in making original textbooks and other classroom reading materials.
Vyew - Vyew can be used to create an instant collaborative workspace online--no downloads required. Registered users can give live presentations, meet with multiple people in real-time, upload course content, or collaborate on documents.
Elgg - This free open source software provides the tools needed to create your own social networking environment. Created environments can include microblogging-style conversations, targeted message systems, and more.
Edublogs - Created for education use, this blogging platform provides a space for teachers and students to practice their blogging skills online. The free version of Edublogs allows users to create private posts and pages with text, audio, and images.
Edmodo - Edmodo is a free and private social platform for classrooms. Platform applications include a messaging service, a class calendar, a place to store and share files, assignment and grading capabilities, mobile access, and much more.
Engrade - This online classroom community makes web-based tools freely available to teachers and school systems. Tools include an online assignment calendar, an online gradebook, an online attendance book, instant progress reports, and secure online messaging.
SnapGrades - SnapGrades offers a web-based gradebook for educators. The free version of SnapGrades allows teachers to create an online gradebook, attendance book, seating charts, and a discipline log.
RubiStar - This free online tool is designed to help teachers create rubrics for classroom learning activities. Rubrics templates are available for art, reading, writing, math, music, science, and oral projects.
We The Teachers - We the Teachers is a social application that makes it easy to find and share lesson plans online. The site can also be used to find other teachers, chat, ask questions, and join groups of teachers with similar interests.
The Apple - Created by Monster, this social site is designed to help teachers meet and network online. Resources on The Apple include forums, videos, articles, a newsletter, an "ask the teacher" feature, teacher trivia, continuing education and event information, and a job search board.
Guest post from education writer Karen Schweitzer. Karen is the About.com Guide to Business School. She also writes about pharmacy technician training for PharmacyTechnicianCertification.com.