As an eMINTS Instructional Specialist, I spend a lot of time surfing the internet and monitoring social media outlets for the newest and latest Web 2.0 tools tom implement in the classroom. For me, this can become overwhelming and I’m not even in a classroom. It seems there is a new tool created every day with applications that can affect classroom instruction, but how do we choose the most effective ones? How can we find time to master all these tools?
Frank Pileiro over at Tech & Learning suggests steps for developing your own Web 2.0 Toolkit. To vision that overwhelming feeling so many Web 2.0 tools give us, he uses the following metaphor:
When you look at all of these new Web 2.0 technology offerings, making a choice can be like drinking water from a fire hose. I mean before you know it, if you lose your focus, you are signed up for a large number of sites that you find out you don’t have any time to master or really integrate into your curriculum. The best advice that I can give is to take a deep breath and do your homework while developing your own Web 2.0 “Tool Kit.” By doing this you can develop skills and lessons based around your tool kit and then grow them from there. It’s very tempting to want to try all of the new things that you come across, but you need to explore them and make a decision as to whether that will work for you or not. Don’t try to “drink” them all in, take small “sips.”
Check out his complete list of tips here.
Still, even with a process to help you sort out all these Web 2.0 tools, the end of the school year is overwhelming on its own. Maybe it’s okay to put developing your Web 2.0 toolkit off until the summer. Many Web 2.0 tools take time and the summer might be able to provide that time you’ll need for such work.
So, make a point this summer to develop your Web 2.0 toolkit in preparation for another great year next fall.
Zac Early is an instructional specialist with the eMINTS National Center.