Issue #7 of Teaching The AvatarGeneration is out! Themed “Social Media”, we’ve looked at how teachers can use social media with their students. We have only scratched the surface of what social media can do for education covering Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, Blogging and Social Bookmarking tools.
Social media platforms can provide opportunities for students to collaborate, share ideas and develop their creative and critical thinking skills once they are guided in the right direction. Students simply need to be taught how to use social media effectively. This can be a tricky subject, but in this issue we showcase many ways to use social media with students in a safe and structured manner.
One of the reasons social media, and technology in general, is becoming so popular in the classroom is because it encourages students to think outside the box. Students are not using social media to write five paragraph essays or create traditional presentations. Instead, they are gathering information and sharing what they have learned in new and creative ways.
In our game based teaching section, we found some great resources in Sumdog, an online platform for free Math and English games. For STEM teachers, we talked to Executive Director Gail Wheatly of Edheads, another great free educational games platform. For teachers interested in easily making their own games, there is an article on The Teachers Gaming Network. We also looked at a truly unique audio-only game – Blindside. It’s hard to believe, but the game is designed to give both seeing and blind users the same gaming experience. A great resource for disability awareness training and tolerance teaching. Other tools covered are GoSoapBox, a classroom response system, Popplet for mind mapping and mix of app reviews for you to read.
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Samantha Kotey is the editor for AvatarGeneration and has a background in educational technology and virtual worlds. A mom of two, she is passionate about all things related to toys and technology.