Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Penzu: applying it to my classroom

How I would use Penzu:

I would use this as way for students to record a summary of what they learned in the day’s lesson or a week summary.  It would be useful to use this when it comes time to review for the benchmark at the end of each quarter.  They can also write what questions they still have and then I can respond to them.

You can also do a writing project with this tool.  You can give students an selection of images to upload to their website that they can choose from to write a story about.  This can be a very motivating technique and can inspire them to use more descriptive words.

Here are some other great ideas-

Penzu: but wait! There's more!

The following video shows you how sign-up and use the website-which I found was pretty easy.

This video shows how to enter an entry, which would be a great instructional video for your students when they first start out writing their journals.

Penzu Helpful Videos

These are some short videos on how to use Penzu.  The first videos shows how to communicate with clients in the industry.  The second video is more of a promotional video.  Check it out!

Penzu Introduction

A online journal that allows students or adults to save their journals online.  They can add images to your journals as long as you upload it to the website first, so you can choose from the left column of your selection of images.  When students are done writing their journals, they can email the journal to you or print it out.  It is such a great way to keep track of your student’s journals or work in this sort of online writing portfolio.  There is no way that the teacher can edit their writing, only the author has full access to the writing.  



David, the instructor on the video, shows you how you can use this program to send a video message to your students.  This program allows you to add an attachment such as a document or a video file.  With the free account, you can add up to 50 email address in your list.  This might not work with the younger age, unless you get permission from their parents, I see this as a tool that can be used in high school or higher education.  It’s a quick way to send out a video message to your students to let them know about an upcoming event, assignment, or even class change. 

Would this tool be helpful for you to use in your classroom?

Writing Prompts


This is not the greatest web 2.0 tool I have seen, because at first glance, it is not interactive.  I love this website though because it provides so many writing prompts that I can use for classroom.  I am always looking for creative writing prompts that would grab my middle school students.  Though it's has not been updated since 2002, it provides an enormous selection of prompts to choose from.  I also love the graphics/pictures that go with each prompt.  The creator of the website tried to sort the prompts by most used, prompts about education, about reading, about personhood, and an option to randomly choose a prompt.  Check it out!  We are always looking for new ways to promote writing.

Check out the first prompt on the top of the page.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Tikatok: how to use in my classroom

When visiting this website and playing around with different features, I came up with a great idea on how to use this website.

Our county is always talking about "how are you going to DI this lesson?"  Well, this website provides a way just to do exactly that.

For my needy students, they can create a story by browsing a subject they want to write about and pick a story that is already created.  They can go through the story and make it their own, and even change the parts of the story they did not like.  At least this gives them a head start, which they need a lot of times.

For my advanced students, I would require that they start a story from scratch, which is not a big deal to them.  They always want to write a story of their own.  If some of them still need help, they can browse the already created books to come up with ideas.