Allison's blog post
Allison Ross, is a soon to be social studies teacher, who is working on her masters at the University of Akron. For a blog post on visual learning she created an outstanding chart of resources for all teachers. I asked her for premission to repost her chart on this site. Below you will find her work and I hope you check out her blog as well.
I was sitting in my grad class, teaching a lesson when a twitter message caught my eye. It said, " instagrok.com just might be what we have been searchin 4,a legit research tool for the 21st century". I clicked and what I saw blew me away. We switched lessons and explored this powerful site. Here are some keys:
1. It has a built in journal and history of what you read and links to where you visited. The journal allows you to take notes and save them for use on any computer anywhere.
2. It is visual: it builds a web on the topic you searched.
3. It has web resources for each topic to the right of the web: Key facts, Links, Images, video, quizes, and concepts.
4. Click any bubble in the web and all the resources change...every time you pick a new bubble.
5. It is fun!!!
Here is a google doc to a PDF brochure on Instagrok.com
Check it out and tell me how you find to use this with your students and what they think. I look forward to hearing from you.
This week both Mike and I were teaching about leaving positive digital footprints. We skpyed a few times and shared ideas between the schools with great discussions on this topic. We set up a wallwasher page inside our blog for students to post ideas, links, comment, images and so on. We thought a few kids would post. However, over 110 posts total on the first day, not to mention 13 post on the blog.
The work is embedded below, but after so long it will delete the work (click the pink "Post a sticky" to open full screen). But, you can see an image to the left after day one. Great work by kids and they found some great information on digital footprints.
Students love visuals. Mike and I have written blogs on wordle, texdo, wallwasher, wiffiti, Prezi and other visual software. Inspiration (kidspiration for younger students) is a classic visual tool. Students flip back and forth between outlines and visual views of the material they are learning. They explore, engage, and find meaning in creating webs of information.
Mike and I have used this for six years and the results are always the same: learning is improved. Mike does not have access to inspiration at his building, so he has used free Mywebspiration or bubbl.us, both free and both performing the same basic idea, constructing knowledge in a visual form. Many of our students are visual learners and if you don’t take advantage of free visual software, you are not meeting the needs of all of your students.
A few students commented on the school blog about using inspiration, I think a few helps you understand why this is good for kids.
I think Inspiration is a fun way to work. I like at the end finding pictures for what each bubble says. It helps me remember better with picturing the object. I would like to continue using Inspiration.
Inspiration is a fun way to learn. It really helps me focus.
I like doing webs, its a fun way to learn! I think we should keep on using Inspirations and learn more ways to use Inspiration
Learning that starts by inquiry and lets kids build visual webs of what they find allows (yes, we are allowing) kids to construct their own knowledge. Encourage your students to build and see what develops.