Featured Post

History Buff: Primary source newspapers, historic panoramas, audio

What it is: I’ll admit it, when it comes to websites, I’m a judge-a-book-by-it’s-cover kind of gal.  If the website isn’t user-friendly and visually appealing it is an almost guaranteed skip for me.  History Buff is one of those forgettable websites. It isn’t overly visually appealing, it isn’t even really obvious how to get started.  I nearly skipped it.  History Buff has something going for it though: thousands of primary source newspaper made available digitally.  Students can search through newspapers from the 1700 all the way until 2004 and see the scanned version of it digitally.  I have to admit, it is pretty cool to be able to “hold” history in your hands that way.  To interact with the “actual” newspaper is pretty neat…worth the lack luster of the site even.  To search for articles, students just need to  choose a time period folder, choose a subfolder and go to exploring these primary source documents.  History Buff also boasts historic panoramas.  Students can view a virtual tour of Colonial America, the Henry Clay Ashland Estate, the William Henry Harrison Homestead, Daniel Boons gravesite, Davy Crockett’s childhood home, Anna Jarvis Home, the site that marked the end of the Civil War, historic sites for Abraham Lincoln, the national historic site for James Garfield, the William McKinley monument, the birthplace of Thomas Edison, Warren G. Harding’s Tomb, and the homestead of William Howard Taft.  A reference library on History Buff contains articles and audio on a variety of events and even hoaxes in the news. Students can also find facts about any state and interactive quizzes. How to integrate History Buff into the classroom: History Buff is a website that can help history come to life through story, virtual tours, audio and primary source news papers.  I suspect that most students fall into the judge-a-site-by-it’s-cover category like me.  For this reason, if I was using it in my classroom, I wouldn’t send students directly to the website to do a lot of digging on their own.  Instead, I might direct them to the portion of the site I knew we would be using through a classroom website, wiki, blog or use a Weblist or Symbaloo to link to them.  It is amazing how changing something as small as the entry point into a site can change a students attitude about the site (heck, I’m like that too!). Once I got into History Buff, I really appreciated the connection to primary sources and the way that the “actual” newspapers bring history to life.  I REALLY liked the hoaxes in news section and suspect that students will get a kick out of it to.  Your kids will be asking, how can people be SO gullible?  These kinds of stories are wonderful discussion starters and will make students think critically about their own news media.  As a fun extension, have your students write their own hoax news stories. Okay, now for demystifying the navigation of this site. See the itty bitty brown words in the left sidebar that are all squished together? That is the navigation. For real.  I didn’t notice it at first either!  Go ahead and click on one to test it out…not so bad when you know what you are looking for, right? Right.  For your convenience, I’m linking to each page of the site below so you can easily find what you are looking for.   Online Newspaper Archives Historic Panoramas Reference Libraries (audio resources, hoaxes) Primary Source Material State Facts Interactive Quizzes Tips: History Buff has a newsletter you can subscribe to if you are, you know, a history buff.  Just enter your email in that box under the header and click “subscribe” and you are on your  way to becoming even history buffier…or something like that. Please leave a comment and share how you are using History Buff in your classroom!

Read More

Corkboard: Classroom Collaboration

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, collaboration, Create, Evaluate, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Subject, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), web tools, Web2.0 | Posted on 30-12-2010

Tags: , , , , , , ,

19

What it is: Corkboard is a neat little collaboration tool that I learned about on Twitter yesterday thanks to @Grade1. Corkboard reminds me a lot of Wallwisher (which has been a little unreliable lately). Best of all, it is literally a one step set up process.  Just type in the web address: http://corboard.me and it automatically creates a unique url for your corkboard.  Click to add a sticky note on the corkboard. Give students or other teachers the unique url so that they can add a sticky note. Easy!  Sticky notes can be as big or small as you like.  Click and hold down on a sticky note to move it around the corkboard.

How to integrate Corkboard into the classroom: Corkboard provides an easy to use platform for students to brainstorm, collaborate, and share ideas. Students can use Corkboard to brainstorm ideas for writing, research, and collaborating on group projects. Ask students to add their thoughts to any conversation on history, literature, science, phonics, or vocabulary corkboard.  Students could practice spelling by typing out their spelling words along with a sentence or synonyms on sticky notes. Students can share a board to discuss a book they are reading together, predictions for a class science experiment, and to share what they are learning in any subject or lecture. You could create a new corkboard each week where you post homework, resources, to-do items, etc. for your students. Students can add sticky notes to the board about what they are learning throughout the week. These Corkboards can be added to a Weblist.me so that there is a record of the whole year.

Tips: Looking for other alternatives to Wallwisher? Check out: Edistorm or Stixy. Each has a little different features!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Corkboard in your classroom.

Comments (19)

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ktenkely and others. ktenkely said: Corkboard is a great alternative to Wallwisher for classroom collaboration http://bit.ly/eRpjxI So easy to use! Thanks to @Grade1 […]

Lino-it and Popplet are two other tools worth exploring. Lino-it has that “sticky note” look but like Wallwisher allows you to embed video and images. It also comes with some project management & collaboration features. Popplet has a different look and feel, allowing you to embed images, videos & even link to books on Amazon. You can also link different “popples” (the sticky note equivalent) together so you can use it as a mindmapping tool.

[…] to LifeHacker and iLearn Technology for the heads up on this webapp. Bookmark on Delicious Recommend on Facebook Share with Stumblers […]

[…] highly recommend checking out Corkboard Me by clicking here.Thanks to the award winning iLearn Technology for the tip!! Sphere: Related Content Posted by dkapuler at 12/31/2010 Labels: […]

Linoit.com is another great one. The cool thing about that too is that you can install a bookmarklet and do a Lino that you can quickly open up and use and put it away when you’re done. Great stuff!

I like to use sites like this as an alternative to the KWL. My students brainstorm questions they have about a topic. As we progress through the unit and discover answers, we add them to the original sticky note.

[…] Corkboard: Classroom Collaboration […]

Thanks Kelly for sharing Corkboard! WallWisher is so frustrating at times. It is nice to know about lots of alternatives! Happy New Year!

I agree, alternatives are always a good thing! Thanks Melissa!

Great idea for using Corkboard as a KWL brainstorming tool Aimee, thanks for sharing!

That is a great option thanks Rob!

I absolutely love learning new and innovative ideas and this has been one of my favorites. I use a lot of graphic organizers in my classroom and the KWL is one that I use often. The idea of corkboard would be more meaningful and a great motivator for students. I plan to incorporate this into my curriculum because it would be a great learning tool.

Hi, I just came across your blog and I must say I absolutely love it. So many great ideas I look forward to implementing in my own classroom. I especially enjoyed this Corkboard site. I’m currently teaching 6+1 traits in writing, and we’re working on the “Ideas” aspect, so this would be a great avenue for students to brainstorm ideas for a topic and share them with others. I look forward to using this! Thanks!

I’m really glad that I came across your blog. I think that I will definitely be using this technology in my classroom at some point. Corkboard seems like it could or would be the step before using Google Docs when students are working on a group project. Students within a group could be looking up different information that is contributing to the same project simultaneously and thus work much more efficiently. I could also have students jigsaw using Corkboard. I’m excited about trying out this new program.

Stacey, great ideas for using Corkboard in your class! Thank you so much for sharing your ideas with us!

The 6+1 traits of writing brings back memories! I was in school when they had just introduced the 6 :) I think you are right, Corkboard is a great place for students to brainstorm and share ideas. Thanks for the comment Nicole!

Good idea for a KWL exercise Kim! Thanks for sharing your ideas!

How do I get more than one sticky on the board?

Lisa,
You should be able to just double click somewhere else on the board to create another sticky note.

Write a comment

*