voki app

Website, app uses avatars to engage students

Voki can be customized for a variety of subjects

Educational technology company Oddcast launched a new version of its Voki website for teachers along with a free iOS application called Voki for Education.

Voki is an ed-tech tool adopted by millions of teachers and students that enables the creation of talking characters or avatars in the classroom. The mobile app was created to mirror the online experience and provide students with a convenient and fun way to work on their assignments and projects.

Voki educational characters have been shown to enhance classroom teaching and maintain a spirit of fun and engagement among students at all levels. Voki can be used to teach everything from reading to history to foreign language and is fully customizable to create historical figures, cartoons, animals, and even portray the students themselves. Voices can be recorded, and talking Vokis can be emailed and shared on social media.

Avatar-based learning in the classroom not only helps students become more engaged, but speaks to a larger shift in how students consume technology while learning.

In a recent Oddcast survey of teachers who have used Voki in the classroom, teachers pointed to the importance of using Voki, with 71 percent saying that using Voki “excites students making them more apt to learn.”

Says Oddcast CEO Gil Sideman, “We designed Voki to engage students creatively, making them active participants in their education, and it is gratifying to see this approach working in so many classrooms in the U.S. and around the world. This new version enables us to offer teachers the opportunity to try Voki in presentations and lesson plans.”

The new edition enables teachers to test the software for classroom presentations and advanced student assignments for free. The paid Voki product allows for a more complete package of services which includes a lesson management system for Voki assignments, enhanced privacy protection for students, and a enhanced version of the presentation program. Voki also offers an ever growing library of Common Core-aligned lessons – reimagined as Voki presentations. The content is crafted by teachers certified in Literacy, ESL, General Education, and Special Education and is presented by animated Voki characters.

Further, at a time when supplemental educational resources are often hard to come by, and teachers are forced to buy their own, free tools are especially valued. A recent report from The NPD Group found that by the end of the 2014-2015 school year, K-12 teachers spent roughly $500 on school supplies with 47 percent of it sourced from their personal funds. With school budgets being slashed around the country, access to free platforms like Voki is more important than ever for educators.

According to edtech expert and middle school teacher Matthew Farber, author of, Gamify Your Classroom: A Field Guide to Game-Based Learning, “My students are more likely to be engaged in the classroom when technology tools like Voki are part of the learning process. Voki allows my students to demonstrate their learning in a unique and meaningful way.”

Laura Ascione

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