Friday, September 27, 2013

What Are Your Favorite Web 2.0 Tools? Which Do You Want to Use?

Thought I would query others to find out about their favorite Web 2.0 tools and which they want to try out or use more often. To start, I should list mine, and tell why I use them.
  • Twitter--use it to learn from other professionals and to keep current on new trends, research, and updates in the education field.

  • Diigo--could not live without this tool to bookmark and tag sites I want archived. By keeping the Diigo Diigolet extension on my toolbar, I can easily bookmark sites. This enables me to return to sites on any computer by going into my Diigo Library online and looking up the sites using a "tag for searching" or using a "List" that I created to categorize bookmarks. I now have over 5,000 sites bookmarked. As much as that is, I can easily find the sites using the tags or list feature. 
  • Although I also use Pinterest to bookmark sites, I don't find it as functional as Diigo for locating sites I want to go back to at a moment's notice. I pin to boards, but if I need to find a bunch of sites on a related topic quickly, Diigo's indexing system with tags and lists works better for me, which I find weird given I tend to be a visual learner, and Pinterest is a highly visual medium. 
  • Facebook--although I use Facebook to connect with friends, I also use it to follow many professional pages, which like Twitter, keeps me updated on professional development. 
  • Blogger--for creating posts, such as this one, and reading others' posts and commenting.
  • Other blogging platforms--really like Kidblog as a way for students in elementary and middle school to get going with blogging. For high school and college students, recommend Blogger or WordPress, though know many higher schoolers flock to Tumblr. Although I have a Tumblr account, I use it primarily to follow others' Tumblr blogs. Know some teachers also use Edublogs, which is a division of WordPress, for class blogs and for individual students to blog. 
  • Google Communities--increasing I am turning to Google Communities for information related to the field of education, but also have joined other Communities such as photography ones.
  • Animoto, GoAnimate, Bitstrips, Storybird, and VoiceThread are some of the Web 2.0 sites I go to make digital stories, or as with VoiceThread, to also create interactive slide shows. I also like HaikuDeck, which is an iPad app, but is in a beta release for use on the Web, and have used the website version that way. 
  • For creating word clouds, I use Wordle and Tagul. Here is a word cloud generated with Tagul, using this post to create it:

  • Wikispaces is the wiki tool I use with classes, though I have also created class wikis using Google Sites.
  • Although I have used GlogsterEdu and Padlet, I have not used them as often as my colleagues who teach K-12. I like Glogster for younger students to create an interactive bulletin board, and Padlet as a collaborative chalkboard, Post-it note site.
  • Google Drive and Google Sites--are the two Web 2.0 tools I use daily. For these, I am forever thankful to Google for providing free tools to author with and allow for online collaboration.
  • Also liking Google Hangouts for video calling, but realize many schools still rely on Skype, and think the Skype in the Classroom site is an excellent way for teachers to find Skype projects. 
  • YouTube is my favorite video tool for collaboration. I subscribe to several YouTube channels and individuals, and also save my favorite YouTubes in categories. Also, turn to YouTube if I need to upload a video I created. Occasionally, I have used Vimeo, but YouTube remains my favorite for having fast access to an enormous collection of videos.
  • Dropbox and Evernote are tools I use in addition to Google Drive for cloud storage.
  • Flickr is my go-to-tool for storing photos and finding others' photos that are Creative Commons, free to use.  
I am sure I left out some favorites, but believe I have included the ones I use regularly as well as ones that I have seen teachers and other educators use often.

So what are some of your regulars and favorite Web 2.0 tools? What are ones you want to try out for professional use and with students?


  1. Looking over this list of Web 2.0 Tools I realized I still have a lot of technology to explore with and try out in my classroom. In previous years my favorite tools to use have been google drive and glogster.
    The use of google drive allowed my students to find their passion for writing. Allowing them to use the computer for assignments changed their world. I would put up "extra credit" writing assignments on the weekends and I would have 10-15 students writing full blown essays in their free time.
    When I had a glogster account students loved going on and creating presentations for all different subject areas. It was great because students were allowed to be as creative as they wanted and everyone's projects were very unique.
    This year I am starting to become more familiar with twitter and blogger so I have a feeling in the near future they will start to move up on the list of my favorite web 2.0 tools.

  2. My favorite tool so far is Animoto. I love how easy it is to create presentations! I get very little time throughout the day to plan for my small groups so having a tool that I can use quickly is perfect!! I have also gotten positive reactions from my students and other staff members on my Animotos. I will continue to use this tool with my students.