Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Creating a Web 2.0 Classroom

A really successful UDL classroom integrates a range of digital tools to support learning. With that in mind here are:

10 Ideas for Incorporating Web 2.0 Tools into Universally Designed for Learning Classroom

  1. Plan for podcasting your classroom lectures and discussions. Be sure to get permission from school administrators if you allow students voices to be a part of the podcast. Then allow students to download lectures from the school website for review and reteaching
  2. Create scaffolded notes using Google Docs, print them for in class use and post to your school website/broadcast the link in an email to parents—take it from one who knows, parents will love being able to see the notes! This is also a convenient way to easily provide materials for students who are absent, disorganized or are just poor note takers. In addition, the materials will be readily available in a digital format for those students who have text to speech accommodations or just benefit from being able to pull up notes on their computer.
    1. Start out with a thorough set of notes, with all points covered, and the least notetaking needed. Save
    2. Working with the first version, delete key vocabulary words or key points, creating a fill in the blank set of notes, for students that can add these key points in as they listen to the lecture.
    3. Working with this next version, keep sentence starters or key points for notes to be filled in by student and delete the rest, creating lines for students to continue filling in the information as they listen to the lecture.
  1. Use a social bookmarking site, such as or diigo to tag resources for projects or units. Utilize features of the bookmarking site, including notes to highlight important things for students to pay attention to on the website.
  2. Start a classroom wiki and have students post drafts of projects or papers for peer review and editing. PBwiki is a good place to start for a kid friendly wiki.
  3. Use Flickr for young students to create a photo portfolio of their work, including activities and actions across the year. Be sure to have a digital camera readily available at all times.
  4. Using cooperative learning groups, have students plan and write a podcast script based on a curriculum topic. Utilize UDL tools such as Intellitools Classroom Suite, Write Outloud or Kurzweil for writing the script for those students who benefit from text to speech software. Record the podcast and post to the school’s website.
  5. Have students plan, write, and create multimedia poem using Flickr or Picasa Web based on a theme. Each photo in the sequence would be accompanied by a line or stanza of the poem.
  6. Create a classroom blog to post curriculum related discussion and questions from students to the teacher and to each other. Students comments should always be moderated by the teacher.
  7. Use a classroom blog to create an online book group. As an introduction, show students the blog created to discuss the book The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd.
  8. Use Google Earth and Maps to create a virtual field trip to a geographical area being studied. Create placemarks and keep track of where you have visited for a school year.
For more great ideas on integrating Web 2.o in the classroom take a look at this post from Langwitches, on the Best Web 2.0 Applications for Elementary School Classrooms.

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