Building my IDL tool kit is important to me. I want to be able to use cool, useful tools to help my learners. But where to go to find tools?
Let’s say I am looking for a tool for student engagement. A great place to find one is Edutopia. Sponsored by the George Lucas Educational Foundation, it is a cornucopia of ideas for great teaching! I discovered the site has a whole section on student engagement as well as a resource roundup where the resources are organized by topics.
So I gave it a test run by going to a site that claims to have 4 Free Web Tools to Boost Student Engagement. I had a tough time choosing between Screencast-o-matic and Postermywall. Screencast-o-matic allows users to capture up to 15 minutes of anything that is happening on their screen. This would be a great project in an entry level computer science class, where the student has to create a project to teach how to do something with a computer.
Is it engaging? Well, what are our criteria of engaging. Let’s check out this poster:
The gears show what makes engagement: motivation, communication and participation. Below that are the specific strategies: stories, emotional connection, competition, curiosity, collaboration, rewards, surprise and humor.
Screencast-o-matic by itself is pretty cool, and that would capture attention with curiosity. But to really make it engaging, it would have to be accompanied with collaboration, competition or rewards. Having teams collaborate in a competition to use screencast-o-matic to create a story that will surprise us. Wow.
Postermywall could be used in a similar way- either a collaborative, competitive or reward based activity. For example, a poster competition for an environmental issue. Or as I used it, to organize the key points of a lecture.
With the plethora of tools and networks of ideas, it is important to remember the foundation strategies of student engagement.
And if you have problems remembering, feel free to use my poster! Or to html link it as well with this code: <a href=”http://www.postermywall.com/index.php/poster/view/f339c4c28e701055dffb4c2b29b237f9″ title=”View this poster on PosterMyWall”><img src=”http://postermywall.com.s3.amazonaws.com/posterpreviews/f339c4c28e701055dffb4c2b29b237f9_screen.jpg?ts=1414076812″ width=”333″ height=”500″ alt=”A New Poster”/></a>