Recently, I've been working with PreK-2 teachers who are new to ed tech. I've been trying to find tools that are easy for both the teachers and their (often pre-literate) students to use.
So far, my favorites are Little Bird Tales and UJAM, but I'm also a fan of Voicethread and Blabberize.
I wrote a blog post about these four tools, called Digital Storytelling for Beginners, if you're interested.
Are there any other easy-to-use tools that offer BIG rewards in the PreK-2 classroom?
I loved this article!! It was very helpful for me, because I am looking to work with younger children. I always thought that using technology in the classroom would be easier for middle/older students, because they are more independent, and may have had more exposure to technology than would littler ones. However, these ideas have helped me see that that is not the case at all- younger children can experience learning through technology in a beneficial way the same way that older children can.
Little Bird Tales, UJAM, and Blabberize were my favorites...and not just because of their names, haha. All of these resources are similar in many ways: they all provide ways for students to share the information that they have learned in class or on their own with other students; they all encourage students to be independent in their projects (the students themselves are picking the pictures to use, recording their voices, making the drawings all with minor help (depending on the students) from the teacher), and of course, they all record voices. They all are very similar, but they are different in the ways they are used: L.B.T. is used for storytelling, UJAM is for music, and Blabberize is for facts and information, nonetheless.
I have never seen any of these used in the classroom before, but I know that when I am a teacher (God-willing) I will be integrating these ideas into my classroom!! Thanks for all of the ideas!
I really enjoyed reading this article. Even though I am wanting to teach older kids I feel like I could still use a few of these technologies quite effectively without making my students feel babyish or boring them. I really like the potential that is there with Voicethread. I feel like I could easily use VT for homework assignments or for collaboration. I also really liked Blabberize, even though it is intended for a younger age group I still feel like this would be a fun way to share information and would catch student's attention. I feel like these tools would also be excellent ways to expose my students to different types of technologies and to hopefully prepare them just a little bit better for whatever their future may hold.
I'm so glad you guys are finding the blog post helpful -- I've also started using iPads in classrooms, and I love the Little Bird Tales app, as well as iMovie. I also REALLY like Toontastic, especially for younger students. Any other cool suggestions?
@Andrew Hay Wolfenbarger: I've used Little Bird Tales with high school students, and they still really enjoy it. I've started to refer to is as a "digital picture book creator."
I m so excited! I think these websites will really motivate my 2nd graders to write more quality work. Thank you!