Saturday, August 27, 2016

Top Tools for Learning

Jane Hart's list of the Top 100 Tools for Learning (2015) is worth I look.

#13 – Pinterest
#25 – Audacity
#27 – Screencast-o-matic

From that list, I’ve purposely chosen 3 tools that I have only a passing familiarity with. I know a little bit about them, and have either used them myself or have seen others use them, so I’m somewhat familiar with what they can offer. What I find amazing about the list, in general, is how many tools are out there – it’s even a little overwhelming. But I like the idea of picking a few to try out; obviously, it would be unreasonable to expect a teacher to use them all. 

Pinterest is very popular. For an eLearning class, I could see it being used to put together a photo collage or photo essay. Or a student could create a Pinterest page as a character from a novel, with character-appropriate photos, captions and hashtags.

Many of my colleagues have used Audacity. I’ve used it sparingly, just to try it out, but never in my classes. I’d love to incorporate a podcast assignment of some sort – it’s such a fast-growing form of entertainment, and on my long drives to work or during my runs, I listen to podcasts every day. Podcasts could be made collaboratively or independently, and would be a great way to display one’s speaking skills (and editing skills), without having to present live in front of an audience

Screencast-o-matic is a tool I’ve just recently downloaded onto my laptop, knowing that screencasts can be an effective way to show students how to access certain aspects of the course, or other areas on the internet, like accessing online databases.


  1. Hi Andrew,

    Thanks for sharing Audacity! I like the idea of using podcasts in the classroom, and as a different form of collaboration and posting with eLearning. It would be interesting to see students create and update a podcast throughout an entire course as a major project or ISU. Not only can they connect course content together and demonstrate the progress of their learning skills, they can also further experiment with the tool to make it better and work for them as they become comfortable using it regularly.

    Screencast-O-Matic looks interesting! I think it would work well online if we want to model how to do something for our eLearning students. I like your suggestion of teaching students to access online databases. When connecting students to a number of different tools online, it may be a good idea to model how to access them and get started. Many students have issues getting started on a task, so this might help them get over the hump.

    Thanks for sharing such great resources!

  2. Andrew,
    Nice list of edu-tech. I've used the later two of your three examples and they work great. One thing about audacity is that if you try to export your sound to MP3 format, you need to install a pluggin... and honestly, I feel my last PC got a "deep root" virus from that install. I reformatted my computer after that.

    Screen-cast-o-matic works great and would probably be a very useful tool for an elearning teacher.

    I have not yet used pinterest!