Welcome to Part 7 of this educational technology series on web 2.0 in the classroom. Make sure you check out the other posts to get you caught up. Let’s move to the topic and collection of awesome web 2.0 sites!
Brainstorming, also called concept mapping, is easily facilitated through web 2.0. Numerous websites exist to help with this process including expensive subscription websites made for the business user. Let’s look at several free sites perfect for the student user.
Bubbl.us is one of the easiest brainstorming websites and has a very kid-friendly user interface. This site is for classic concept mapping. Start with a central idea and branch off to other ideas. Connections to other thought bubbles can be easily created or deleted. For text only brainstorming, Bubble.us works great.
Use it in the classroom whenever you quick and easy brainstorming. For example, it works perfect for mapping out writing assignments.
Popplet should be on your top five list for web 2.0 websites. First of all, it is an excellent brainstorming tool with easy to create thought bubbles called popples. Connections can be created between popples to make a true concept map. Unlike Bubbl.us, thought bubbles can contain images as well as videos. Students can also collaborate in real-time on their projects. Finally, Popplet can be used as a presentation tool by ordering popples in the correct sequence and then entering presentation mode.
Popplet is a nice vehicle for non linear thinking and is a great alternative to traditional presentation software. Make sure your try this site with your students!
Stormboard is an excellent thought organization website that features virtual sticky notes. Students can brainstorm, collaborate and organize their thoughts. A cool feature is that each sticky note can have its own comment discussion. So, students can discuss each thought and decide what is important. They can even vote for the most important stickies, hide the rest and export their board as an Excel spreadsheet.
Use Stormboard for research papers, book reports or any assignment where students need to generate ideas and curate the results.
Instead of traditional concept mapping, try using an online bulletin board. One of the best online bulletin board experiences can be found at Linoit. Set your background to look like a cork board or even use a picture. Then brainstorm with stickies. You can also add images, videos, documents and even private notes that are viewable by only you.
Have your students use Linoit for brainstorming as well as creating digital posters and multimedia projects. Thinking outside the box, Linoit is also excellent as a homepage for your class.
Stixy is another online bulletin board on which you can add stickies, images, documents and even calendar dates. It works well as a thought organization tool and functions beautifully on an interactive whiteboard.
Use Stixy for a classroom brainstorming session. Have students go up to your interactive whiteboard to add or arrange ideas. Similar to Linoit, Stixy can also be used as a classroom homepage.
How do you use web 2.0 in the classroom? Please post your thoughts below. Thanks for reading the educational technology blog Teach Amazing!