One significant part of my role as the Learning Technologies Coordinator at my school is in providing teachers with instruction in the use of effective Web 2.0 tools. Across 2012 I have presented a number of voluntary out-of-hours PD sessions for those interested in building their skill set. One of the best attended sessions focused upon the use of QR Codes, ThingLink and SoundGecko, all of which I have used in my own History and English classrooms.
ThingLink certainly became an instant hit as it allows the user to embed images, videos, links and sounds into an image. The resulting interactive image can be easily shared and, as many of you would already know, it now can be used with both Twitter and Facebook. In my Senior Ancient History class I found ThingLink to be particulary effective in assisting students to “unpack” an artifact. One of the first ThingLinks that I created was of a well known statue from Aphrodisias in Turkey which portrays the emperor Nero and his infamous mother, Agrippina the Younger. This image is embedded below as an example for you to explore. Simply “hover” your mouse over the image and the links will become visible.
Although there are subscription packages available, ThingLink Education offers teachers free accounts with the ability to create up to 100 images. To become a member, simply go to www.thinglink.com
SoundGecko and QR Codes also have myriad uses. To learn a little about these you might wish to view the presentation which follows. It was created with one of my new favourites, Hello Slide, an easy way to turn a PowerPoint presentation into a narrated short video. It’s another great Web 2.0 tool for you to check out, either for your own use or for when the introverts you teach struggle with speaking in front of the class. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to post them here or email me.