It might be shocking that while state education budgets shrink, Education Technology or Ed-Tech is on the upswing. Many of them are free, though the full-blown versions are quite affordable. Here are my favorites:
Padlet – a collaboration and aggregation tool that feels like a website. What’s even clever isit lets you export that page as an image file, PDF, csv file; you could email it as well. I’ve written about it before here, since I use it as an events page for STEM, robotics, and even to submit a project for a class at a community college.
LinoIT – a canvas, with sticky notes that is a bit like Padlet, but acts like a bulletin board, rather than a website. Perfect for students! For added convenience, you could add a sticky note to your Lino page by emailing it to the page!
Voki – a way to create an avatar that could speak on your behalf, or tell a story! You could set up a classroom that uses it, or use it to make an announcement! So many uses for this, especially if you want to open up a discussion about animation.
Story Jumper – a simple way to teach students what e-books are like, and more importantly what publishing involves.
PollEverywhere – I love the way it lets you create pop quizzes, to get class responses on the fly. Few schools allow mobile devices in class (mine too) but that’s easily overcome by pushing a link to all computers and have students click on answer choices.
Suddenly Ed-Tech beginning to look like the 2010 all over again, when ‘social’ was the flavor du jour.
(A bit of good news: The global Ed Tech and Smart Classrooms market is expected to grow from $43.27 Billion in 2015 to USD 93.76 Billion in 2020 –an annual growth rate of 16.7% from 2015 to 2020.)