Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

December 14, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
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This Week In Web 2.0

'Web 2.0 paljastaa' photo (c) 2011, Janne Ansaharju - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

 

In yet another attempt to get at the enormous backlog I have of sites worth blogging about, I post a regular feature called “The Week In Web 2.0.” (you might also be interested in The 50 Best Web 2.0 Applications For Education In 2017). I also sometimes include tech tools or articles about them that might not exactly fit the definition of Web 2.0:

If you register at Reading is Fundamental’s Literacy Central (it’s free and easy), go to the Tools section, and click on “Puzzle Creator,” you can make online…puzzles for students to play. All they have to do is click on the link of your finished product. You can make a WordSearch, a sort of crossword puzzle, and/or a “memory matching” game. I’m adding it to The Best Sites For Making Crossword Puzzles & Hangman Games.

Twitter has now made it easier to create “Tweetstorms” or “threaded Tweets.”  These are basically multi-part tweets communicating a wider message.  If you use the Twitter app or website, you just click on the “+” sign.  It’s still not available on Tweetdeck, however.  You can read more about it at The Verge. I’m adding this info to The Best Resources For Beginning To Learn What Twitter Is All About.

I’ve previously written about Prisma, a free app that lets you turn your photos into manga.  I thought it could be a very attractive tool for reluctant writers to use — they could create their own web comics. TechCrunch showed an example and NPR published an update on the app. Now, Google has developed its own version, an Android-only app called Storyboard.  I think it could be used for similar writing purposes.  Strangely enough, however, it’s not available at the time of this posting even if you click on the link Google shares in its own press announcement about it. I’m assuming they’ll fix that soon. You can also read more about it here.

PikWizard is a new site for finding many images that can be legally used for free. You can read more about it at Richard Byrne’s blog. It’s not as easy to use as the sites on The “All-Time” Best Sources Of Online Images, but it’s worth adding to The Best Online Sources For Images.

December 12, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
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New & Updated: Recommendations For Who To Follow On Twitter In 2018

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For years, I’ve used Storify to collect my weekly posts of “Best Tweets” and my annual list of who to follow on Twitter.

Unfortunately, today Storify announced they were shutting down next year.

The best alternative, as far as I can see, is the “Collections” feature on Tweetdeck. You can learn how to use it here.

It seems to have the basic functionality of Storify, though not its ease of use or its attractiveness. The re-ordering of tweets is particularly troublesome.

However, I assume that with Storify’s departure from the scene, Tweetdeck will improve its features.

I’ll be using it to continue my weekly “Best Tweets” post, and I wanted to re-do my annual list of follow recommendations using it, too, since the Storify version will disappear. Sometime between now and May (when Storify is officially shutting-down), I’ll try to make time some evening and download key resources and re-post them here on the blog.

I’m adding this post to All 2017 “Best” Lists – In One Place!

Let me know who you think I’m missing.

December 11, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Share Your Immigration Story At The U.N. Site “I Am A Migrant”

 

The United Nations has declared December 18th International Migrants Day, and what better way to celebrate/recognize it than having our ELL students share their immigration story at the UN site, I Am A Migrant.

Students can write text, provide audio or upload a video. There are zillions of stories there that can be used as models.

I’m adding it to The Best Places Where Students Can Tell Their – And/Or Their Families – Immigration Story.

You might also be interested in our similar schoolwide project: A Look Back: “What ELLs Taught Our School In A Week-Long Empathy Project”

December 8, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Using “Quick, Draw!” With ELLs & Other Students

Quick, Draw! is a tool from Google that tells you an object and then gives you twenty seconds to draw it. People have drawn one billion images using it, and Google uses them to make its “machine learning” better. You are given six items to draw and then it shows them all, along with providing you the ability to compare your creations with others.

Quick, Draw! with Google is a post from the TechNotes blog that offers lots of different ideas on how to use Quick, Draw! with English Language Learners.

Personally, I would just use it as a high-interest way for students to learn new vocabulary (they can figure out what the word means before they start the twenty seconds limit), as well as a nice opportunity for listening practice (the game provides automatic audio narration for the words and sentences it says).

I say I would use it that way because our district content filters presently block the site, and I haven’t yet gotten around to exploring if they would unblock it for us.

Another interesting way it could be used is by exploring the similar and different ways the same objects are drawn in different cultures. You can read about that possibility at today’s post at Google’s blog, A look at one billion drawings from around the world.

I guess Google has been in an artistic mood this year, since they also released a second cool drawing tool. You can about it at Google’s Brand New “AutoDraw” Is Likely To Become A Favorite Place For Those Of Us Who Are Artistically-Challenged.

I’m adding this post to:

The Best Art Websites For Learning English

The Best Sites For Learning About The World’s Different Cultures

December 8, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

New Big Collection Of Free Music To Use With Facebook & Instagram Videos

 

Today, Facebook unveiled Sound Collection, a large and growing selection of free music to use with Facebook and Instagram videos.

Obviously, it won’t be very useful for school if you’re using them on Facebook because of district content filters, but many teachers – including me – have students create videos on Instagram and then upload them to unblocked platforms (see The Best Resources For Learning To Use The Video Apps “Vine” & Instagram).

You can read more at TechCrunch’s post, Facebook Sound Collection lets you add no-name music to videos.

I’m adding this info to The Best Places To Get Royalty-Free Music & Sound Effects.

December 3, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Week In Web 2.0

'Web 2.0 paljastaa' photo (c) 2011, Janne Ansaharju - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

 

In yet another attempt to get at the enormous backlog I have of sites worth blogging about, I post a regular feature called “The Week In Web 2.0.” (you might also be interested in The 50 Best Web 2.0 Applications For Education In 2017). I also sometimes include tech tools or articles about them that might not exactly fit the definition of Web 2.0:

Pantrom seems like a very easy new tool for creating simple collaborative webpages. You can create up to ten for free. I’m adding it to The Best Ways For Students Or Teachers To Create A Website and to The Best Online Tools For Collaboration — NOT In Real Time.

Twiducate is on The Best Places Where Students Can Write Online list. It provides a private social network where teachers and students can communicate, with messages not visible unless users register and sign-in, and is free. They just announced they completely rebuilt the site and that the new version is in beta, but will be open to everyone in a month. It might be worth checking out then.

AndroVid looks like a decent video editor for…Android. I’m adding it to Not The “Best,” But A List… Of Online Video Editors.

I had thought that I had previously posted a “Best” list of tools presenters can use to get immediate audience feedback.  But I guess I was mistaken.  I’ll eventually get around to publishing it (and would love to hear reader suggestions). In the meantime, however, here are a few suggestions:

I’ve used Today’s Meet.

Here’s a list of ten others from Presentation Guru.

Here’s a blog post by Catlin Tucker about how she uses one of those tools (Mentimeter) for creating Word Clouds with her students.  I’m adding that post to The Best Resources For Learning About “Word Clouds”

November 26, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Week In Web 2.0

'Web 2.0 paljastaa' photo (c) 2011, Janne Ansaharju - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

 

In yet another attempt to get at the enormous backlog I have of sites worth blogging about, I post a regular feature called “The Week In Web 2.0.” (you might also be interested in The 50 Best Web 2.0 Applications For Education In 2017). I also sometimes include tech tools or articles about them that might not exactly fit the definition of Web 2.0:

Talent Cards lets you make multimedia Flash Cards. You can create a virtual classroom for a limited number of users for no charge. Because of that limitation, I’m not ready to add it to The Best Tools To Make Online Flashcards.

Niftio lets you create multimedia presentations, and offers free education accounts. It seems okay, though I’m not ready to add it to The Best Ways To Create Online Slideshows.

MogoBooks lets you create online interactive workbooks.  If you sign up now, it’s free.

Tan Huynh has a nice post, Presenting With Buncee, about using a tool with ELLs that is on a couple of “Best” lists.

Students can write movie reviews at DogoMovies. I’m adding it to The Best Places Where Students Can Write For An “Authentic Audience”

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