eLearning 2.0 derived from the term Web 2.0. Like the latter term, eLearning 2.0 integrates collaboration and technology to aid the learning process for teachers and learners.[1] In the K-12 classroom, for instance, Web 2.0 tools have redefined the way students and teachers connect, collaborate, and share information. It has also changed the way students interact with the subject matter.

Digital programs such as blogs, podcasts, and wikis are a few examples of student-centered learning projects that teachers can implement to facilitate student learning experiences. Educators can use technology to assist with teaching language arts, reading, mathematics, science, and virtually any content area. And technology provides students with the ability to access classroom resources from their desks at school or the comfort of their homes.

Classroom Collaboration[edit | edit source]

Blogs[edit | edit source]

Classroom blogging.jpg

A blog is a website, or a webpage, run by an individual or a group. Classroom teachers use blogs to post class announcements, assignments, feedback, and typically any form of appropriate communication to their learners. Students contribute to classroom blogs by submitting assigned work, sharing ideas, and providing positive feedback.

Wiki[edit | edit source]

A wiki is a collaborative web page. On a wiki, users can browse through and create information about a given topic. In fact, the name wiki is an acronym for "What I Know Is" (WIKI)[2].

For this reason, a wiki is a great classroom resource. It encourages students to collaborate and share what they learn. You can use a wiki in a number of ways. Some examples include a book or magazine, a classroom or community wiki, a wiki on a specific subject, or even an agenda.

Some teachers in K-12 discourage the use of a wiki in the classroom because of its open-source characteristics. But, because wikis provide opportunities for users to research and share their information it proves to be a highly effective web 2.0 tool in the classroom. You can even grade a student's contribution to a classroom wiki like you would a discussion post.

Social Media[edit | edit source]

Everywhere around the world people are connected via social media. In the classroom, social media can be utilized the same way. Students can be connected within a classroom or though out a school. Many times, parents are also invited to connect to the classroom via social media.

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Though it is helpful, starting a class account is not a requirement. You will find that many educational resources on social networking platforms are open to the public. But starting an account can also provide educators with plenty of teachable moments to share with their learners. Some benefits of having a social media account include the promotion of student work and learning programs, the sharing of student posts in an effort to extend their learning and encourage real-world application, the creation of connections through out school communities, and the teaching of digital citizenship and digital etiquette.[3] A few examples of social media platforms that can be used in K-12 classrooms are Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.

Classroom Management[edit | edit source]

Prezi[edit | edit source]

Prezi is a presentation tool that teachers can use in the place of PowerPoint. The exception is that Prezi uses a zooming user interface that allows its user's to zoom in and out. Prezi is also cloud-based. It is best suited for using in education because of its visual and unique transitions which are more likely to keep children focused. [4]

Bouncyballs[edit | edit source]

Bouncyballs is a free web-based noise meter. It uses balls, bubbles, or emojis to measure sound. This tool can be used to help students self-regulate noise within the classroom during learning activities such as center rotations.

Flippity[edit | edit source]

With Flippity you use a Google spreadsheet and turn it into flash cards, a badge creator, a spelling quiz, a memory game, a word search, and more. Teachers can use Flippity to enhance class presentations, assess individual students, and get students to create. There are demos, templates, and detailed instructions for each use case.[5]

Classroom Tools[edit | edit source]

Using technology as a classroom tool can support your instructional strategies and support the needs of diverse learners. Technology can help you change content and adjust the mediums of input and output. Digital, audio, and word processing tools are just a few examples of these type of mediums. Integrating websites, like Nearpod, or podcasts into instruction are some examples of this. It can also help you differentiate instruction to meet the needs of your learners.

Nearpod for differentiated instruction.png

Podcasts[edit | edit source]

Podcasts allow teachers to introduce students to the benefits of writing, editing, production, and communication skills. Students not only become interested in podcast topics, they also become interested in learning about how podcasts are made. You can use podcasts during a reading lesson. One teacher prerecorded reading assignments on his own podcast so that he could assign students to listen along side an assigned reading. This practice proved to be especially beneficial during remote learning because he did not have to spend class time reading to his students.[6]

Gamification[edit | edit source]

The definition of gamification is the use of game-design elements and game principals in non-game contexts.[7]Gamification can help motivate children to learn content by keeping them engaged in the classroom. Gamification is more than teaching with games. Elements of gamification include leaderboards, badges, levels, and additive grading. Examples of gamification in the classroom include the use of BrainPOP, i-Ready Learning Games, Prodigy, and Kahoot!.

Bookmark Managers[edit | edit source]

Social bookmarking[edit | edit source]

Social bookmarking is a service that is online and gives users the ability to store, organize, manage, edit, add, annotate, and share bookmarks of webpages and documents on the web. Additionally, users are allowed to tag and share with other groups the keywords that are relevant, and bookmarking websites gave users the ability to view their favorite websites, not stored on the computer, from any location. Hence, social bookmarking sites allow users the ability to share links, videos, and pictures. Social bookmarking was made easy for users to locate websites and assist users in generating backlinks to the users website.

Diigo[edit | edit source]

Diigo is a social bookmarking website that allows signed-up users to bookmark and tag Web pages. Additionally, it allows users to highlight any part of a webpage and attach sticky notes to specific highlights or to a whole page. These annotations can be kept private, shared with a group within Diigo, or be forwarded to someone else via a special link. The name "Diigo" is an acronym from "Digest of Internet Information, Groups and Other stuff".

Educators also use Diigo for assessment and classroom management. Diigo allows you to highlight and attach sticky notes to specific parts of web pages you bookmark. Then, every time you return to your bookmarked page, these highlights and sticky notes remain—just as they do on hard copies.

Pinterest[edit | edit source]

Pinterest is an American image sharing and social media service designed to enable saving and discovery of information (specifically "ideas") on the internet using images and, on a smaller scale, animated GIFs and videos, in the form of pinboards.[8] This is also a creative tool for students to organize their ideas and thoughts when writing an essay for their class. Students can use Pinterest as they create images of resources that they will need to do visual presentations for their reports or projects.

Distance Learning[edit | edit source]

Blended Learning is the combination of face-to-face and online learning. There is a difference between a blended learning classroom and a technology rich one. A part of "the definition is that the modalities along each student’s learning path within a course or subject are connected to provide an integrated learning experience."[9] The following are a few examples of blended learning experiences.

In the flipped classroom, students are introduced to content at home and explore it further with the help and support of their teacher at school. Synchronous online learning involves the use of live classroom meetings and requires that teachers and students are present at the same time during the learning experience. Asynchronous learning is very popular in online learning environments because it is student-centered and student-paced. It doesn't require the live presence of an instructor, rather instructors set up the learning environment in a learning management system, such as Canvas or Blackboard, and leave students to execute learning tasks independently. This type of learning requires a great deal of self-regulation and discipline.

Storage and Planning[edit | edit source]

Planboard[edit | edit source]

Planboard is an online tool designed to help educators simplify their planning. The site allows teachers to save and share calendars and schedules, making it easy to re-use these plans in the future. Once a new user has registered an account, s/he can begin adding items to a personal calendar. The whole thing works a lot like the calendar on most mobile phones, only that this version is online[10].

LiveBinders[edit | edit source]

LiveBinders is a free online bookmarking site that provides a unique method of storing online resources and sharing those resources with others. [11]LiveBinders allow you to create separate binders for each of your topics with the opportunity to create tabs and sub-tabs within that category.

LiveBinders serves as a virtual binder that takes traditional organization to another level. Even the average tech-savvy teachers and students can take advantage of uploading and organizing class materials. Documents, websites, and media can be uploaded to tabs within each binder, and a table of contents can be implemented.

PlanBook[edit | edit source]

Planbook gives teachers the tools to develop, plan, schedule, collaborate, and share their lessons with other educators.

Acceptable Use Policies[edit | edit source]

An Acceptable Use Policy is an important document that can demonstrate due diligence with regards to the security of your IT network, software, internet connection devices and the protection of sensitive data in the event of a breach or regulatory audit. This importantly protects the organization from legal actions. Identifying the need to be proactive, many organizations are establishing acceptable use policies for workplace technology.[12]

An AUP is an agreement between the student and the district designed to keep students safe online. This agreement allows them to explore the digital world as part of their education, instead of accessing inappropriate or harmful sites, such as bullying, school violence, etc.

Legal & Ethical Uses[edit | edit source]

" The Privacy Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) from the U.S. Department of Education outlines the best way for teachers to follow when bringing new students into the classroom and uploading sensitive personal information. The text describes how schools can review the contract for data use and retention as well as what’s being collected and how it’s being used."[13]

The use of technology in the classroom requires teachers and administrators to implement good decision-making when recognizing types of situations that pose harmful outcomes to the overall integrity of student work and behavior. It’s also important for teachers implement the use of AUPs, rules, and the reasons behind them to create an atmosphere of honesty and support. Teachers should focus on how technology can enhance student learning and help students see how technology can build on real-life activities.[13]

Education Technology Organizations[edit | edit source]

Educational technology is a "term used to describe a wide array of teaching-and-learning–related software and hardware that's increasingly being used in college and university classrooms. Educational technology refers to technology that usually helps facilitate collaboration in an active learning environment." [14]

The essential objective of Educational Technology is to improve the quality of education and enhance the learning process. Most importantly, “technology should magnify the teaching and learning process as well as facilitate better performance of educational systems as it emphasizes upon effectiveness and efficiency. Organizations are formed as a result of educational technology.”[14] There are EdTech organizations every teacher should know about, they include the following:

ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education): The organization’s activities include hosting key learning events, some events include the annual ISTE conference and expo, producing professional development resources and a number of annual publications.[15]

OII (Office of Innovation and Improvement): "The OII administrates over 20 competitive grants alongside workshops, technical assistance and publications to develop and improve innovation in education in the US."[15]

CoSN (Consortium for School Networking): Through training, policy advocacy, professional events and forums, a range of professional development toolkits and research CoSN confidently asserts that it is at the forefront of developing a cohesive, empowered and knowledgeable community of EdTech thought leaders.[15]

ITEEA (International Technology and Engineering Educators Association): ITEEA produces a number of resources and toolkits for members, and hosts a number of events throughout the year building a world-wide community of passionate STEM educators. They have issued useful standards on technological literacy, as well as a number of resources on computational thinking.[15]

Digital Promise: With programs, ranging from makerspaces, computational thinking, adult learning and educator micro-credentials, Digital Promise also partners with Digital Promise Global to enhance curriculum with content that expands a students’ world view.[15]

FLE (Foundation for Learning Equality): FLE was borne of a desire to reach schools and communities with the strongest need for equitable quality education. The largest single challenge in this regard is access to internet, so the organization has developed an offline program called Kolibri, basically an offline Khan academy.[15]

Professional Development[edit | edit source]

You can find more information supporting Professional Development and the integration of technology in the K-12 classroom here.

  1. Fore, J. (2021, February 5). Web 2.0 eLearning. What it is and why it is important? Knowledge Direct Learning Management System. http://www.kdplatform.com/what-is-web-2-0-elearning/
  2. WIKI. (n.d.). Acronym Finder. (1988-2020). Retrieved May 27, 2021 from https://acronyms.thefreedictionary.com/wiki .
  3. Social Media: An Asset in the Classroom. Social Media in the Classroom - School of Education - Loyola Maryland. (n.d.). https://www.loyola.edu/school-education/blog/2018/social-media-an-asset-in-the-classroom.
  4. Prezi vs. PowerPoint: Which one is better? . (2021, May 2). Presentation Geeks. presentationgeeks.com/blog/prezi-vs-powerpoint/
  5. Major , E. (2020, March 2). 5 Free Classroom Management Tool Any Teacher Can Use. Common Sense Education. https://www.commonsense.org/education/articles/5-free-classroom-management-tools-any-teacher-can-use
  6. O'Scanaill, M. (2021. January 20). How to Use Podcasts in the k-12 Classroom. Dyknow. https://www.dyknow.com/blog/how-to-use-podcasts-in-the-k-12-classroom/
  7. Gamification in Education: What is it and How Can You Use It? (2020, April1). True Education Partnerships. https://www.trueeducationpartnerships.com/schools/gamification-in-education/
  8. Social, C.M.S. https://www.cmssocial.com/social-media/how-pinterest-is-different-from-other-social-media-platforms/
  9. Maxwell, C. (2019, February 6). What blended learning is- and isn't. Blended Learning Universe. https://www.blendedlearning.org/what-blended-learning-is-and-isnt/
  10. Tech in the Classroom: Planboard| Education World (n.d.). Education World. Retrieved June 12, 2021, from https://www.educationworld.com/a_tech/tech-in-the-classroom/planboard.shtml
  11. Teachinghistory.org. (n.d.). https://teachinghistory.org/digital-classroom/tech-for-teachers/25517
  12. Kajeet, Inc. (n.d.).Why Acceptable Use Policies Are Critical for Education. Retrieved June 11, 2021 fromhttps://www.kajeet.net/why-acceptable-use-policies-are-critical-for-education/
  13. 13.0 13.1 StackPath. (n.d.). Professional Governmental Underwriters. Retrieved June 11, 2021, from https://www.pgui.com/the-legal-concerns-of-classroom-technology/
  14. 14.0 14.1 Top Hat. (2019, September). Educational Technology Definition and Meaning. https://tophat.com/glossary/e/educational-technology/#:~:text=Educational%20technology%20is%20a%20term,in%20college%20and%20university%20classrooms.&text=Educational%20technology%20refers%20to%20technology,in%20an%20active%20learning%20environment.
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.5 Holz, S. (2019, April 10) 8 Edtech organizations every teacher should know about. [INFOGRAPHIC]. NEW BLOG. https://blog.neolms.com/8-ed-tech-organizations-every-teacher-should-know-about/
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