Page Updated: Web 2.0 Tools to Embed on Your Blog

I have just updated my page about web 2.0 tools to embed on your blog.

Here you will find:

  • Tips for using and embedding web 2.0 tools.
  • A list of tried and tested tools from slideshows to videos and polls.
  • An embedded example of each tool so you can see what it looks like.

Please visit the page and leave a comment if you have any feedback or suggestions.

Top 100 Tools for Learning 2010

Jane Hart, a social business consultant, and founder of the Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies, has been compiling a list of the top 100 tools for learning since 2007.

The 2010 list is currently being compiled and you can view the full list here – Emerging Top 100 Tools for Learning 2010.

Interestingly, you can compare the ranking of the tools over the last four years.  So far, it is fascinating to see how popular Twitter and YouTube have become since 2007. It is also interesting to see how many top 100 tools there are this year that were not rated in previous years. Most of the tools on the list so far are free which is great to see.

Voting will close on 17th October 2010. I encourage all educators to take the time to share their Top Tools, to help make a comprehensive and useful list for all.

It was a very tough choice but my top 10 tools are

What are your top tools for learning?

What do you think makes a good tool?

Track your comments with coComment

As a reader of many blogs, I like to be able to track my comments and find out when others have added to a comment conversation. A year or two ago, the Edublogs guru, Sue Waters, introduced me to coComment and I haven’t look back!

coComment is a service for managing, powering and researching conversations online. When using coComment, you can keep track of your comments across any site, share them with friends, and get notified when you get a response.”

While coComment has functions to search for comment topics across thousands of sites and has tools to build networks, the most valuable tool for me has been the simple tracking tool.

CoComment summarizes all of your comments, and the responses, in a single location and notifies you of any updates to any of them.”

To get started with tracking your comments on coComment, simply visit the coComment website and create a free account, then install the extension. Every blog or site you comment on will then use coComment to capture your comments. coComment will automatically start tracking the conversation.

cocomment2

You will be able to see a summary of the sites you’ve commented on when you login to the coComment website or open the coComment sidebar (Shift, control, Q).


cocomment

I like to use coComment to keep track of the class, student and education blogs I follow and comment on.

To find out more about installing and using coComment, visit Sue Water’s blog post.

Do you use a comment tracking tool?

Could you see this tool being useful to you?

Quietube: Video Without the Distractions

Quietube is a handy tool that allows you to watch videos such a those on YouTube without all the distracting or inappropriate ads and comments etc. Providing YouTube isn’t blocked at your school, this is a great tool for the classroom!

Quietube also works with videos from Vimeo, BBC iPlayer (available in UK only) and Viddler.

Using Quietube is so easy. You simply drag the button from the site to your toolbar, then when you are watching a video on a site like YouTube, you press the Quietube button on your toolbar and the video opens in a distraction free window.

You can also get a short link to your distraction free Quietube video to send to a friend.

quietube

Do you know any other tools that make watching videos in the classroom easier?

Virtual Maths Manipulatives

I nearly always use my IWB (interactive whiteboard) for Maths whole-class introductions and often small group instruction.  Publisher McGraw Hill and Glencoe have a great maths resource for your IWB that is an alternative to IWB software. It is called Virtual Manipulatives.

Virtual Manipulatives is a Flash based website with interactive manipulatives that students and teachers can use to introduce or reinforce maths concepts. It is suitable for students from Kindergarten to Year Eight.

This site is very simple to use (mostly drag and drop) and requires very little preparation.

You simply choose a background from the collection of Game Boards, Story Boards or Work Mats. Work Mat options include place value mats, tens frames, graph paper, algebra tiles, in and out equation tables, blank calendars, number lines and number charts.

You can then set up or solve a problem by choosing from a set of manipulatives such as base ten blocks, counters, fraction tiles, cubes, spinners, tangrams, calendars, clocks, teddies and number cubes (dice).

You can narrow the choice of backgrounds and manipulatives to your grade level to find the most appropriate resources.

There is a pen tool to draw on the screen and completed work can be printed. There is also a stop watch feature to time the completion of tasks.

virtual manipulatives

Leave a comment. How could you use Virtual Manipulatives in your Maths lessons?

Create a Global Avatar with Gravatar

As I read quite a few blogs, I always like it when a commenter has an avatar (picture of self) next to their comment. Even if the avatar is not a true picture, it adds interest and a personality to the commenter. Often, when someone does not have a recognised avatar, their comments on blog posts and so forth display a randomly generated image or nothing at all. On my class blog, visiting commenters are assigned a monster image. This is cute but doesn’t add a unique identity or personality to the reader.

blog gravatar

The solution to having an avatar that will work when you comment on all blog posts is Gravatar. This image follows you from site to site when you comment on blogs and other forums. I found about Gravatar last year from the ever knowledgeable Sue Waters. She has a great step-by-step description of how to use Gravatar. Check it out here.

gravatar

If you want some ideas on how to create a fun avatar for yourself or your students check out my post here.

Another Cool Blogging Tool

I found out about the site Page Plugins on Mary Ellen Lynch’s classroom blog. It is another fun tool to add something different to blog posts. On the site, you can create all sorts of visuals from glittering text (above) and Easter Bunny notes (below) to embed on your blog. There is also a range of clocks, calendars, widgets and fun Flash tools. I will be adding this one to my page of Web 2.0 Tools to Embed on Your Blog and look forward to using it on my class blog next term. Check it out!


Easter Note Generator

Speechable

Speechable is a cool website I found out about from David Kapuler’s blog. It is simply an easy way to add a speech bubble to an image. You can upload an image from your computer or a URL and photos can be shared with friends via email or on Facebook®, MySpace®, Orkut, blogs, and message boards.

Here is a pic from the Speechable gallery

Adding speech bubbles to images could be a fun activity for children, a literacy task or even a classroom competition. You can make photos private which means you can still email and embed them but they won’t appear in the site’s gallery. Check it out.