Tuesday, January 28, 2014

TEI Tuesday Tip for 1/28

EduWidgets Make Content Fun!

For all of you who love to experiment with cool "techy" tools, the Virginia Department of Education has just recently introduced a new interactive, online authoring tool called EduWidgets. I read about it from a January 17, 2014 Superintendent's Memo. It prompted me to set up an account and explore what resources it has. This interactive tool looks promising and is currently in beta testing. You may never decide to author new content, but you can try out the variety of "exemplars" in its Shared Widgets. It puts the tools for creating interactive content into your hands and enables you to create TEI question types. I love that it is designed for Virginia teachers! http://www.eduwidgets.org

For more detailed information, read the welcome information below, from the email I received after applying for my account.

Welcome to EduWidgets, content authoring tools provided by the Virginia Department of Education. These tools enable teachers to develop interactive lessons and share them within online courses, iBooks, and Web sites. The tools also enable students to become content creators; students may create interactive sequences, timelines, graphs, and images.
Student and teacher creations may be published on the Shared Widgetspage and tagged by keyword, subject, grade level, and Virginia's Standards of Learning (SOL). All widgets must be reviewed and approved before publishing; teachers approve publishing requests from their students. Administrators may approve publishing requests from both students and teachers.
EduWidgets teachers play an important role; teachers may create student accounts and approve publishing requests from students. Student accounts are managed using the tools available under the Manage Students tab.
Teachers ensure the quality of the content published by reviewing and approving widgets created by their students. Published widgets appear under the Shared Widgets tab on the main Web page and are visible to all users. Published widgets cannot be modified. Widgets with incorrect or inappropriate content should not be published; teachers provide this quality assurance for the program. If a published widget contains inappropriate or incorrect content, it may be flagged and notification sent to division administrators for removal.
Note: The EduWidgets software was developed using HTML5 to create widgets that work with all tablet platforms and modern browsers. As a result, for best performance it requires Chrome, Firefox, or Safari. Although Internet Explorer 11 supports many features, it is not fully compliant with HTML5.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

TEI Tuesday Tip for 1/14

The Teacher Toolkit

Need a fresh idea for effective teaching strategies? The teacher toolkit is a website developed as part of a teacher training grant in Texas. The purpose of the website is to share teaching strategies that can be used for: classroom management, opening activities, checks for understanding, partner/group/independent practice, reading strategies, games and closing activities.
Each tool has an explanation of how and when to use it, a template students can use to implement the tool and a place to take notes about how you use each tool. Many of the tools also have a short video which gives an overview of the particular tool.
Check it out and try something new!

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