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LifesaverProject - Volume 1 Issue 1 December 2006 Free...

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Free Software Lifesaver Tools for the first year teacher! Are You Drowning ? Web Tools Communication Aids Editors: Kay Cooksey and Joanne Folger Drowning in paperwork? Asking yourself, “What was I thinking when I decided to become a teacher?” Your first year of teaching combines the rewards and excitement of en- tering the classroom with a stagger- ing amount of hard work. As veteran teachers who have discovered ways to reduce and manage the gigantic work load, we have partnered to- gether to provide a potential life raft for you as you dive into the un- known. This brochure details sev- eral tools that we have found useful, and we hope they will help in your voyage. In his presentation at the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education International Conference 2004, Dr. Andrew Brovey, of Valdosta State Univer- sity, introduced the concept of “Low- Cost and No Cost” technology tools for supporting online instruction. His interest arose from the expense of software for delivering and manag- ing instruction to support distance learning. A number of the tools Dr. Brovey referenced are also useful for the classroom teacher. In this newsletter, we compile a handy summary of FREE technology tools that can make your life as a first- year teacher more manageable. Also included are links to these re- sources for easy access. The most helpful FREE technology tools that we have discovered from Dr. Brovey’s list are useful for the following aspects of managing in- struction: Internet assignment posts, rubric creation, online quiz- zes, WebQuest development, re- search projects, software downloads, and online group pro- jects. Please give us your feedback concerning any of these tools, whether helpful or not, and any ad- ditional ideas that we could include. To read more from Dr. Brovey’s arti- cle, see: Brovey, A. (2004). Low- cost and no-cost tools for support- ing online instruction. society for Information Technology and Teacher Education International Conference 2004 (1). 356-358. [Online]. Available: http:// dl.aace.org/14296 Volume 1, Issue 1 December 2006 Are You Drowning? 1 Keep Afloat with Communication 1 Dive In To Research 2 WebQuests 3 Online Course Tools 3 Guiding Beacon for Assessments 5 Free Downloads 6 About the Authors 8 Dropload to the Rescue 4 Inside this issue: Keep Afloat with Communication J o a n n e F o l g e r Communication with parents is critical when establish- ing behavior and academic goals for your students. The University of Illinois stated in their news release on September 7, 2006, that “A school community is built on relationships established among children, school staff members, and children’s families.” With most par- ents employed outside the home, in addition to the hec- tic schedules led by today’s families, online communi- cation is an ideal means for providing information about assignments, projects, deadlines, and class expecta- tions. Teacher web pages can be your life jacket in maintaining open communication with parents and stu- dents! The following three tools help you create and customize your web page.
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