12 September 2016

Apples and EdTech

Looking out and watching maturing apples fill my immediate horizon, I can't help but compare these apple trees to the developments and changes in EdTech. Digital tools and platforms have come and gone; others, starting off as "free" then end up charging the user. Fortunately for educators and learners, some remain both free and very much alive (e.g. Padlet, Edmodo). 

The EdTech tree also has other characteristics other than "fallen" tech (i.e. digital tools which no longer offer service). One can chose what one sees best for one's context - both in terms of one's learners' needs and learning context  - as well as teaching context (online, F2F, blended, subject, level). For each scenario, one needs to also take into consideration which digital device learners are using and how learners may use the tools.  For example, students of mine have not enjoyed using Glogster to create digital posters on their iPads as the screen was too small; they were much more productive and happier once they worked on their glogs with desktops. 

And sometimes, there are moments when paper and pen are needed as well. Just as moments of silence too is part of learning and doing, there are moments when the best apple is one of paper. With that in mind, Graphic Organisers are a great resource for teachers to share with their students. 

Graphic Organizer Maker offers different graphics which teachers can use in their classes, from Venn diagrams to Pros and Cons and Timelines.  These are simple graphics which help learners organise their thoughts before writing or developing a storyline before using a digital tool, for instance. 

The new academic year may have already begun in some parts of the world, and before one knows it, it will be time to re-focus on goals of achievement. WorksheetPlace has some interesting graphics on Goals - simple and clear for students. 

WorksheetPlace also has other worksheets worth looking into - Writing Worksheets to help budding writers as well as Grammar Worksheets and Maths and Science

Another activity which I regularly find of interest for students, is curation.   Wakelet is a recent curation tool which I stumbled across and a place where you can save and share your interests.  
Wakelet is free, shareable and includes a feature where curators can include their notes and decide whether their boards will be private or public. 

From Finland, yet another new EdTech product comes for educators to choose from. (Eliademy, for example, is a Finnish platform for educators as well). 

ClanEd  may be used for a curation/sharing space, but also offers other features to users, such as following other boards you may be interested in and inviting others to participate in a board you create.  For educators this holds special interest as they can create a board on a specific topic and invite their students to participate  and contribute to  it. Students (or any other participant on a board) can pose questions, comments, while the owner of the board can check for feedback and notes on a particular module. 

There is also a feed, through which the user can easily check up on boards they are following. ClanEd does offer more too - definitely an EdTech apple to bite into. 

Student digital portfolios are a corner stone for me as they are a personalised space of creations, developments and interests of the individual student. They are also more than mere  reflections "productions" - they are learning spaces, dynamic, personalised and evolving. 

Apples and EdTech in Autumn - 
a wonderful time to explore the apple tree of tools for learning. 

Tom Rosenthal | “Lead Me To You” - Official music video from annlinchao on Vimeo.


  1. wow. So many new tools to explore! And blogposts of yours to look into!

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  3. Hi Maha,

    Thank you for visiting! If ever I can help with any tool, please just let me know - am on a constant learning curve myself :-)