5 Top Tools for Distance Learning
This blog post is sponsored by Acer Education, a partner of EdTechTeam.
These are just a few of the tools featured in our free online course about Distance Learning Tools.
Lights, camera, Screencastify!
Screencastify for education is an easy-to-use, free browser extension that can flip a classroom to online learning.
You generally need a Chrome device or browser to use the tool. Then you can share directly to Google Classroom.
The free version includes all of the recording features but there is currently a 5-minute maximum for each video. The unlimited version allows longer videos and has more features available.
Here are some various ways to integrate screencasting activities in your classroom, including fluency practice to slideshow narration.
Screencastify Submit easily integrates with Google Classroom to send assignments to students without needing the Chrome extension.
Screencastify has compiled e-learning resources for educators, available here.
Canva is a fremium product that is free for teachers… Students and teachers can use this powerful tool to make design products of professional quality.
Users can create beautiful infographics, posters, brochures, booklets, etc. with all kinds of effects, filters, fonts, and more.
There is a wide array of templates available, including various sizes specifically formatted for social media platforms.
Search to find loads of high-quality free images available for use; of course you can upload your own images as well. It is important to discuss Digital Citizenship and copyright issues with students.
Users can duplicate pages and collaborate with teams on the various elements. Please note that live editing at the same time is not currently possible.
The upgrade allows users to access additional files and features, such as the ability to automatically resize an existing file to different sizes.
Teachers will find that Edpuzzle is an easy, awesome way to flip a classroom. Students can engage with videos that teachers have created or adapted for their own use, with their own voiceovers and inquiries.
People all around the world have already created many files that are available to use.
You can copy those files and edit them (e.g. crop, change questions, etc.) for your own use or create your own original videos. Teachers may also place restrictions on the video and how the students can interact with it. Their scores will go directly to the Gradebook.
There are several LMS Integrations that Edpuzzle works nicely within.
Nearpod is a free add-on that can be used with Google Slides, Microsoft PowerPoint (or a converted Keynote)… Add slides by importing your own files, starting with a blank presentation or using one of the many templates in the lesson library.
It is an excellent tool for keeping social emotional learning and connections, especially during remote learning. Instead of a static presentation that produces a lecture, learning comes alive with students participating in tasks, virtual field trips, polls and much more.
You can set time limits of any amount, which might be useful to help pacing within a limited live class or provide guidance in a student-paced lesson. Live lessons are free with the Silver version and can be done live with up to 40 students.
Some of the activities could be used collaboratively in breakout rooms in online learning platforms, when available (e.g. Zoom).
Teachers can see students’ results and participation and then offer feedback and targeted support based on responses. You can download a sample report on the right.
Nearpod is currently offering additional free resources here.
Soundtrap for Education is an online, everywhere studio. It can be used anywhere on any device and is entirely powered by the cloud.
Music makers and storytellers – this one’s for you (but not just you!)…
“Soundtrap is a game changer for my students. It has helped them learn that music is a tool that can spark the imagination and bring people together. Once those doors are open the possibilities are endless.”
Music Teacher at PS 48
Soundtrap links nicely to several various learning platforms to enhance your digital classroom. It has several functions that make it a safe and easy tool for teachers and students to use.
Users can create and edit sound and music files together or independently.
The users can make podcasts and can even do so collaboratively.
The annual subscription information can be found here.
Soundtrap for Education is a tool that can be used by any teachers wishing to infuse creativity and innovation in their classroom, whether virtual or otherwise.
If you would like to learn about more tools, enroll in our free ‘10 Distance Learning Tools’ online course!