Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Infuse Learning

I am always looking for tools to suggest to the teachers in my districts. I had been using Socrative as my go-to student response tool. I had heard of Infuse Learning, but had never realized its potential until TCEA a few weeks ago.

Infuse Learning is a website that teachers can use to collect student responses on the fly or create quizzes to administer for saved results and assessment. Like Socrative it has a student and teacher portal login that is different so each user can access the features they need. However, Infuse Learning is only available through the web, not an app. Still a great BYOD classroom solution!

The three features that set it apart from other similar products is the variety of question types, the audio/translation features and the ability to create classes:

1. Question types: Like most student response software, you can use multiple choice, T/F, and open-ended response questioning. But Infuse Learning also allows for drawing your response, uploading images to be attached to questions, sorting, numeric response and Likert scale. Having so many types of questions to choose from makes this a very versatile tool.

2. Audio: When you are working with students who are English Language Learners or need content read to them, the audio feature is a great option. Setup your quizzes and then allow students to use earbuds to listen to the questions and answers read to them. You can even use the language option to translate questions and answers into another language.

3. Classes: I have never had a problem with students naming themselves "Mickey Mouse" or other names that are not theirs when having to enter their own name, but I have heard it happens. Infuse Learning lets the teacher create classes so that a class can be launched with student rosters already in the software. Take attendance and jump into a response activity with just a couple of clicks.

Infuse Learning is a tech tool worth investigating!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Canva - Simple, easy graphic design tool

I am really enjoying this new (at least to me) tech tool. I attended a session at TCEA 2014 presented by Dr. Cathy Moak from ESC 6 called "45 tools in 45 minutes." Some of the tools she talked about I use all the time, but I had never tried Canva. This site is allows users to use templates and customize presentations, posters, business cards, and other graphic items.

The site has thousands of customizable items that you just click to change text, colors, and make them your own. No one has to have any experience in graphic design, but can still make gorgeous, professional products. Users have the ability to upload their own images to embed in the designs also. 

When you are finished designing, you can share it with a link or publish it as a png image for the web or download for print as a PDF. Many of the items can be used for free, but some of the images/templates have a fee. Many possibilities for this simple, but powerful online tool.