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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Best Tools for the Job

Best Tools for the Job

Related Tags: Classroom Technology
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I just came back from a meeting of our Tech Committee, and I was struck by how many of us have developed our own idiosyncratic work flows, but sometimes miss tools that might really simplify things.

For example, by having a classroom bookmark site on a social bookmarking tool like Delicious, Diggio, or Pearltrees, parents and students could access online resources from home, and the tool could be continuously refreshed and shared as needed- much more efficient than bookmarks in a browser, and accessible regardless of what browser or device someone is using. Yet some teachers have never really done this or thought about it as a tool for their classroom, using a wiki, website or other tool instead.

What tools do you use that save you time, or act as shortcuts? What tools would you recommend a teacher try in order to save work or allow greater access to materials? Maybe by sharing these favorite resources, we can save everyone a little time!

This post was created by a member of Edutopia's community. If you have your own #eduawesome tips, strategies, and ideas for improving education, share them with us.

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Kevin Jarrett's picture
Kevin Jarrett
K-4 Technology Facilitator from Northfield, New Jersey

As an elementary teacher, I need tools that are simple, visual and of course free. SymbalooEDU is a good example. It allows me to manage collections of websites for each of my grade levels, K-4. Here they are:

Kids love them, parents appreciate them, the service is free and reliable, what's not to like? It's one of my must-have resources!


Samer Rabadi's picture
Samer Rabadi
Online Community Manager

Kevin, when I click on the link I get a server file directory. Is that intended?

Kevin Jarrett's picture
Kevin Jarrett
K-4 Technology Facilitator from Northfield, New Jersey


Click each of the links...


Whitney Hoffman's picture
Whitney Hoffman
Producer LD Podcast, Digital Media Consultant, Author

I love social bookmarking tools, as mentioned above. I would also add setting up google alerts for topics of interest is a great way to follow news or topical areas that can be incredibly useful especially for research projects.
There are also a ton of useful Chrome Extensions and Chrome apps that act as incredible time saving shortcuts- and avoid keystrokes. Better yet, with chrome, when you sign onto a new computer and into the browser, all your extensions follow you by user name, making it easier to work on any computer, anywhere, any time.

Dan Callahan's picture
Dan Callahan
Professional Learning Specialist, Edcamper, Graduate Professor

Agreed with KJ, Symbaloo is an essential part of the workflow for sharing resources at my school. As far as my kids are concerned, all of the most important resources they need to access flow through our blog and symbaloo

Keith Heggart's picture
Keith Heggart
High School Teacher from Sydney, Australia

I'm trying to do a lot more discussion and analysis with my senior students, so I was looking for ways to share resources (mostly weblinks to articles) with them. One of the best (and simplest ways) that I found was Flipboard. I create my own Flip magazine, and added the links as I went through - kids could then subscribe to it and then use twitter to comment... early days, but promising.

I must be honest, and this goes back to Whitney's insightful original post, I've never used Symbaloo (blush). I will look at it now. Thanks!

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