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Red Cedar Writing Project
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RCWP Techie Tool Box
top of the mitt
Below RCWP TCs offer support for various new technologies by addressing these topics: What does the technology do? How have I used the technology? Why would I recommend it (or not) to my colleagues? What is a step-by-step process for using this technology?
services allow users to save, organize, manage, and share bookmarks (notations of preferred websites) on the internet. They're extremely useful tools for research and collaboration on the web. (As well as to organize/maintain important resources where they can be accessed from any computer and won't disappear the next time your browser has to be reinstalled.)
- one of the largest bookmarking services with excellent tools for integrating/publishing your bookmarks to blogs, websites, and other online spaces.
- Once very active, Furl had the added advantage of "archiving" as well as bookmarking webpages. This meant if they moved or were removed, you still have a copy with the information for building a bibliography. Unfortunately it suffered some down time, the publishing tools aren't nearly as "user-friendly" as Delicious, and the "archiving" feature has become hit or miss. Still preferred by many "hard core" researchers.
- more than simply bookmarking, Trailfire allows you to group bookmarks and turn them into a "journey" to share with friends, students, or colleagues.
Smart/Whiteboards, Graphic Organizers
are useful for making short tutorials for students or colleagues. For example, if you are interested in having your students use Windown Movie Maker to create digital stories, there are several dozen free screencasts at the
website. Check it out both for examples of how helpful screencasts can be and for some specific assistance on using Movie Maker.
Teacher-made screencast about
how to create a hyperlink on pbwiki
(it's in the sidebar of this link).
The previous screencast was made for free by downloading
(it allows you to capture images or video and share them online as a screencast).
Whether you have Macs or PCs, your building should have access to digital storytelling software. Macs have the wonderful IMovie program and PCs have the decent Movie Maker program. Online programs include the easy-to-use, free download,
Photo Story 3
and Photo Peach (below). Though many of us have created a digital story at one workshop or another, it's hard to incorporate digital stories into our curriculum sometimes.
The Pearson Foundation has done an excellent job of leading teachers and students through the process. They have put together handouts, short movie tutorials, and a very step-by-step process to follow at the website listed below. They take you through unit planning, how to find and organize photos, storyboarding, recording your voice...the whole process, really. They even include several student samples, some of which they offer as "needing work." It's a good chance to allow students to look at samples critically so they have a better idea of what to include and what to watch out for when they make their own. Check out their website at Digital Arts Alliance:
is one I created for my students to assist them in creating Public Service Announcements using Windows Movie Maker; it includes student examples, the rubric I used, and several tips to assist the process.
PhotoPeach Digital Stories
I made a
(it's called "Enjoy Michigan's Beauty" and is embedded below) in 15 minutes off the top of my head with a few family photos; while no masterpiece, this video, and the process it took to make it, showed me how straightforward
Enjoy Michigan's Beauty! on PhotoPeach
Cool Tools for Schools
If you haven't found that cool tech thing you were looking for, try the following website.
Web 2.0: Cool Tools for Schools
It's alphabetical by Cool Tool, but if you're looking for a certain type of tool, check out the Categories list in the left column.
We can't all have PhotoShop, so there are free, online photo-editing websites like
While there many things you can do with their premium version, you can create a photo like this one with the no-cost version.
Set up a class blog at:
Good Examples of Blogs:
Scholastic's Top 20 Teacher Blogs
The Edublogger List of Classroom Blogs
100 Blogs Every Teacher Should Read
help on how to format text
Turn off "Getting Started"