Go Global with Empatico
I signed up to stay in the loop for this back in the summer and it looks like it is ready to go. It is a new venture, aimed at facilitating global connections and is currently focused on 8-10 year olds. If this interests you, check out the video below and head over to the site to get more info.
# FlipGrid Fever
I wrote a bit about FlipGrid back in June and it just keeps getting better. I watched a webinar this evening with two of the Flipgrid ambassadors- Karly Moura and Sean Fahey. Every time I watch a webinar, or read more about this tool, I learn something, get new ideas and come away thinking that it should be/could be used in so many ways. Is it the best tool for every job, every student? Of course not. Should the pedagogy come before the tool? Of course... but... wait til you see all the cool stuff you and your students can do! I keep hearing about student voice, student choice, making thinking/learning visible. FlipGrid can help you with all of that. I'm not going to try to recreate their webinar. They have shared their Google site with all the resources used and 3 previous webinars. Check it out right here. The tabs at the top of the site will bring you thru the topics covered this evening. Don't miss the tab labeled Rapid FIre... here's a screen shot- 4 slideshows with ideas separated by discipline. Love that Flipgrid is even a choice in a hyperdoc on the Global Read Aloud Wild Robot.
One other thing that I really like about this tool is that it can be integrated across many platforms- including Google Classroom and Edmodo. Here's a link to a pdf to read in your spare time, for those of you who prefer paper. You can also follow the #flipgridfever hashtag on Twitter to get lots of ideas of how other teachers are using it to enhance student voice.
Seriously, it is a 2 minute job to set up; there's a free version and kids do not need an account. If you're worried about the "video" aspect- your students will probably be far less worried than you, but you can always give the option of pointing the camera to a book, an artifact, etc. and just using their voices and there are good monitoring and privacy controls. Check it out!