With a focus on tools for secondary teachers By Carrie Abood, Angie Hamric, and Christopher Wiles
Highschool Web 2.0 Projects
Carrie Abood - Skype
Angie Hamric - Ediscio
Christopher Wiles - Cramster
Skype is a free downloadable program that allows you to make FREE phone calls, video calls, and instant messages to anyone else who has Skype -- anywhere in the world, anytime of the day or night.
All you need to get started is an Internet Connection!
Skype is an extremely popular program. Since its creation in 2003, Skype has registered more than 350 million users from around the world.
One of the most popular ways to use Skype is when you are traveling abroad. Talk to family and friends for free -- no outrageous phone bills.
How to Become a Skype User
1. Go to www.skype.com
2. Click on the button that says "Download"
3. Choose your type of download; Skype can be used on Windows and Mac, as well as WiFi phones, iPhones, and PSP players.
4. Skype will automatically download. A Desktop shortcut will also be created.
5. Now that you have Skype, the program will ask you to test your microphone and webcam (for video calls).
6. Begin finding friends on Skype, and start calling!
Benefits and Drawbacks of Skype in the Classroom
Skype to Skype calls are completely free; therefore, it is a great program for teachers on a tight budget!
Skype could be used for international calls to penpals and classroom buddies
Students who travel during the year can use Skype to update classmates about their adventures
Teachers can assign collaboration projects with other Skype classrooms anywhere in the world
Your computer must be turned on to use Skype, and the people you call must have Skype running on their system in order to receive your call
Technically, a dial-up connection will suffice, but realistically you need broadband to really enjoy Skype
Skype to Skype calls are free, but calling cell phones and regular phones from Skype costs money
How does Skype look?
Final Thoughts on Skype Personal experience with Skype: In the two times I have used Skype, I have been pleased. I attended a conference where the speaker was presenting from 20 hours away; we could see and hear him through Skype. In my personal time, I have also placed a video call on Skype. It was really fun! What makes Skype better than a regular phone call is the ability to use the webcam and actually see the other person. I plan on using Skype more once I find friends who also have the program downloaded. My main purpose for researching Skype is because I want a free calling service for this summer, while I am traveling in London.
The creator of Ediscio.com made the site to help him prepare for a test. He found that the tags used on the site were frequently used on his exam. He took his flash card idea and made it web based.
Refer to themselves as the "Swiss army knife among flashcard tools"
One notable feature is the ability to add images and video to the flash cards!
Ediscio is a free web application that provides learners the ability to create, use and share flash cards!
How to join the Ediscio fun!
1. Go to www.ediscio.com
2. Click the GREEN sign up button
3. Create a username, password and enter your email address
a. enter the chars on the
b. Click the create button
4. Log in on the left!
Make a flash card! 1. Create a card box a. personalize the card box b. choose settings c. click "create" 2. Click "new flash card" a. enter keywords, question and answer b. questions and/or answers can be images or videos
The Pros to Ediscio
Free and easily accessible
Ability to use images and video as part of the card
Feeling lazy? Search and use other user's flash cards
Provides data regarding your learning
Users can create a personal learning schedule
Teachers can create a card box of flash cards and share them with their students
Study groups can
share and edit
Video links did not always work
Preferred image service is requested
I searched other's card boxes and could not find many that I could actually use
Mac users should use Firefox (Safari didn't open pages)
My overall impression with Ediscio is that it could be very useful. I am somewhat concerned that it doesn't allow you to upload pictures from your personal computer. Everything on the site is uploaded via internet, including video. This makes it difficult to use other resources beyond YouTube and related services. I liked the way it personalizes your learning program and provides data about your progress. I would recommend Ediscio but probably for its collaborative opportunities and not for the ability to advance your flash card by adding images and video.
Cramster.com launched in February 2003. Since then, with over 100,000 active members, we've been helping students understand how to do homework and be better prepared for exams in over 4,000 schools from Seattle to Seoul. Cramster, Inc. is a private company headquartered in Pasadena, California, and chaired by Shai Reshef, an online education industry veteran.
How to join Cramster
Go to www.cramster.com
Left Click on the button
Choose the "free" account
Enter all of your pertinent information and submit
Check your e-mail to activate your account.
Benefits of Cramster
Cramster features step-by-step textbook solutions, practice tests, and Q&A Board features for students to help each other with homework problems. Currently, students can receive help in Algebra , Calculus , Statistics , Physics , Chemistry , Biology , Civil Engineering , Computer Science , Electrical Engineering , Mechanical Engineering , Finance , Economics , and Accounting .
Cramster also owns and operates the largest class schedule-sharing application on Facebook , Courses 2.0, which was voted 4th best application by PC Magazine . The application has over 400,000 active users.
Drawbacks to Cramster
Difficulty in textbook formatting to make it visible.
Too many people ask for answers rather than asking how to do an assigment.
There is very little interaction about anything but math, so it is difficult to build a study group.
Cramster Views & Final Conclusions
Can be a useful supplement to classroom instruction, particularly in mathematics
Can be of particular benefit for students needing help in math, as they receive help and different views from someone other than their regular teacher
Can reinforce math concepts for students as they provide assistance and answers to others' questions
There are several useful sites for 7-12 educators. Some of them have a few issues, but overall most of them are very useful.
Skype - A great resource for distance learning! Educators can connect and communicate to other classrooms world wide!
Ediscio - Great resource for vamping up the basic flash card while personalizing your learning style.
Cramster - Connects students to create an online study group! Work with other students and educators to prepare for a lesson or exam!