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edtech tools

8 teacher-loved edtech tools to try in 2017

These edtech tools are already being used with success by teachers and schools across the country, so give them a try!

Want to be an innovative teacher? There are literally hundreds, if not thousands of apps and online edtech tools for that! But which ones have the most potential for the New Year? Probably the ones that have already seen success in a number of schools and districts across the country.

Information technology has already changed the way education is provided and it continues to make even more impact with new apps that are designed every week. To help you get a little bit more innovative in the coming academic year, here is a list of proven-effective edtech tools that may be highly useful in the classroom. Explore and enjoy!

For Online Courses/Blended Learning

1. Coursera

Everyone who took at least one online course on this platform knows how great it is. If you have not had this opportunity, then it is a great reason to try it, especially if you want to take education to the next level. Coursera is known to work with both K-12 and higher education institutions and provide them with access to online courses. They use the latest available knowledge to ensure the relevance and effectiveness of education, which showcases the professionalism of the company. After completion of the courses, all participants have the opportunity to receive certificates. For K-12 teachers, the platform also has many learning opportunities; for example, check out this course on integrating technology in the K-12 classroom that starts this month.

2. iTunes University

Have you ever downloaded an online lecture from iTunes? Well, Apple took its education effort to a new level by creating this tool, which is essentially a vast library of free educational resources. It has a lot of resources for students, including books, videos, lectures, flashcards, and other materials. All K-12 teachers and students with Apple devices can use it, enabling educators to create custom courses and assign particular materials for learning. Students will have an opportunity to engage in individualized lessons, which is also important.

Interactive Information Providers

3. Wolfram Alpha

This tool could replace Google in K-12 classroom. It works just like the well-known search engine and can provide information about specific inquiries related to learning subjects. For example, when “Abraham Lincoln” is typed in this engine, basic information, images, leadership position (with dates!), timelines, notable facts, physical characteristics, family relationships, associated historical sites, and more is retrieved. As a result, a lesson on Abraham Lincoln could easily be constructed, as well as visual presentations and reports. More educational uses are described on the official portal here. Wolfram Alpha is also a serious tool used by higher education institutions and businesses. For example, its research capabilities are used by social media researchers, book researchers, business researchers, and ordinary users who need to know the weather.

4. Google Knowledge Graph

This edtech tool is another way to get information to prepare teaching materials. It includes short, accurate answers revealed after Google-ing something; so instead of looking through numerous websites, the user may get the answers for queries more easily. As the result, K-12 educators can search for materials more quickly than by using Google, which can be beneficial for time management in lesson creation. The platform is user-friendly and can also help teach educators skills needed for internet research, which is essential for digital literacy nowadays.

(Next page: Edtech tools 5-8)

Presentation Tools

5. Prezi

Tons of online presentations have been created by K-12 students on this platform, so why not use it? Prezi is an advanced way to make presentations that will make users forget about PowerPoint. It is a completely online tool that allows for stunning interactive presentations and collaborating on different projects in real time. What can be surprising to the educators and students is that the platform has changed the way a user makes a presentation by moving away from slides. Already used by K-12 schools for assignments, this edtech tool has been proven effective as early as elementary school!

6. Plotly

K-12 teachers can also use this edtech tool to advance their graphic representation of learning materials. Specifically, educators can gather assignments online using Plotly while their students engage in current tutorials to improve their visualization skills. It can also be used to collaborate on projects in real time, just like with Prezi. For teachers, another great advantage of using Plotly is the opportunity to store materials in the cloud to avoid huge files and be able to access these materials anytime, anywhere.

Classroom Connectors

7. Edmodo

Want to connect with students by using a dedicated platform where you can also communicate with parents and colleagues? Edmodo provides great opportunities for educators, schools and parents to stay up to date with current school events and individual student performance. For educators, the platform may also improve the grading process by making it easier to access works completed by students. The edtech tool also prevents students from using assignment help and enables them to participate in discussions. Educators can provide access to homework and teaching materials to parents, so the latter can be involved in the educational process.

8. Schoology

If educators need to create a new curricula, class rosters, or calendar of lessons, then Schoology is the right edtech tool! The system provides a wide variety of tools that automate processes, thus saving time and effort for educators. It also has a number of advanced features, such as the creation of individual calendars for students, personal messaging, and workload planning. These features can be used by K-12 every day, so Schoology can become a personal assistant. This assistant is also completely free to use, which is another reason why Schoology rocks.

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