Setting the stage – multiple elements
Free but Voki Classroom is not free. If you do not have a classroom account, students must put in an
email (remember Google trick). Students should be 13 or older.
Personalized speaking avatars
It is fun and it is a novel way to present information. Engaging. Various ways to get it to talk – you can
use phone (cell phone) if don’t have a microphone or type it in and use a Voki voice. You can choose the
voice and accent.
Can embed in a blog or wiki or send in an email.
Can personalize easily. Choose between people, animals, aliens and more. Customize physical
characteristics. Choose or upload a background.
Great for practicing speaking, organizing presentations or thoughts into a verbal report, for
pronunciation which makes it ideal for foreign language.
“Safer” digital identities for very young students. Gives identity also that is safer online but can also help
bring shy student out of their shell.
Like digital storytelling – are writing, editing, revising and presenting information. This includes a lot of
work as well as choosing/designing the appropriate character (or avatar). This is important. Avatar
should be relevant.
Spanish Examples - http://cartierm.wikispaces.com/Voki
Conversation - http://www.freetech4teachers.com/2010/02/engaging-students-with-voki.html
Foreign language projects
Use to introduce self to class
Students reading poetry
Character relevant to report talking (example – animal from rain forest discussing dangers of destroying
Teachers can also embed Voki in webpages or wikis to give instructions or as an example of the project
they are looking for from students.
Issuu and Calameo-
Both make publications into online magazines or portfolios, flipbooks etc with PAGE TURNING.
Virtual books. Great way to show off student work and motivate students. Beautiful book or
magazine presentation, very attractive and professional. And with URL students can share their work
with anyone they like (private URL means whole world won’t see it). One site called these “the
YouTube of the book world”).
Page turn effects are different depending on site. You’ll see in some examples. Calameo has page
turn sound that I like! And backgrounds!
Calameo is ipad compatible – is HTML5.
Can mail or embed in a webpage. Stored online or shared by embedding or emailing. Both can share
Other sites like this are Youblisher or Yudu, or MixBook.
Free and hosted fee. Need email address and must sign up. Calameo free and unlimited.
Can do multiple documents in various formats. Can control comments – can select must be modified.
Allow others to download or not.
Considerations – Issuu is age 18+ and neither has specific educational user accounts – also is web
publishing so copyright big deal. Racy magazine covers something to consider also. Both have a way to
publish for adult only viewing, so that is something that students will see (the option) if they are working
directly with the site.
Can publish online magazines (or flipbooks) from Word documents, Open Office documents, PDFs,
PowerPoint, Excel and text files.
Page-turning (not as good as others) and zoom built-in.
Web publishing easy and = motivation! Get URL.
Other students can comment if feature is turned on.
Can embed into blogs, wikis or websites easily – code is provided.
Can make “private” publications – can only access with direct URL (will not show up in searches).
Create ebooks or magazines – classroom magazine or newpaper about historical events, what’s
happening in science, people – publish papers, photo books, original stories with illustrations –
anything. Own classroom literary magazine of compiled student work. Electronic portfolios. How-to
guides. Newsletters, picture books.
Example on Calameo – youth literature festival. Each child did a page on a subject and teacher took
pictures of them. Added introduction pages. Made book in less than hour.
Other examples – same teacher.
Example on Symbaloo – Western Civ class made “Year in Review” history magazine of 1066.
Literary Magazine – 7th and 8th Graders
Similar – This one done in Youblisher - http://www.youblisher.com/p/4605-TKAMB21/ -PAGE TURNING
To Kill a Mockingbird meets 21st Century. Class project. Love way pages turn but clunky – Issuu much
quicker and slicker.
Calameo is a great way to publish your documents in a manner that makes them accessible across a
wide variety of platforms including the iPad. Peter Vogel told me about Calameo a couple of weeks
ago. I finally got a chance to try it out this week and I really like it.
Using Calameo you can publish your documents in a flip-book or magazine style with page-turning
effects. You can add a background soundtrack to your document. You can also specify the sounds that
viewers hear when they turn the pages in your documents. Your Calameo documents can be
published and shared using Calameo's HTML5 embed codes (makes your document iPad compatible).
Published documents can be annotated by content publishers and viewers (that option can be
I've embedded a sample document below. I did not use the sound effects option for this document.
Applications for Education
Calameo offers a nice way for students to showcase some of their best works. The annotation option
could be good for having students comment on each other's works. You could also use the annotation
option to compliment students on something that they did particularly well.
Capzles is a similar multimedia presentation tool that allows you or your students to create a free
account. It is much newer than voicethread, and educators are beginning to harness the learning
opportunities it has to offer. This site can be used to create a digital story or timeline. It allows
collaboration with others while creating your capzles. They can be easily integrated into your
curriculum in many different ways. You can create your own capzles for instruction or they can be a
tool in a student's 21st century learning belt. Any way you incorporate them, capzles are very user-
friendly and now many of our students opt to use this tool instead of traditional paper and pen!
Both voicethread and capzles are available in the itunes apps store and there are plans for them to be
available for android devices soon. Please let us know how you could use either of these tools with your
students or if you have tried them before. Have fun!
Capzles is a fantastic web 2.0 tool for the classroom. Use it as an alternative to traditional
presentations. Upload all sorts of content including documents, text and video. If you have a
PowerPoint presentation…upload it as well! You can also write blog posts directly into the
presentation. When your content is loaded, you will have a linear gallery similar to a slideshow
In Capzles, every piece of content is called a “moment.” Let’s say you have several images that
are closely related. You can “stack” them into one “moment.” When you are presenting, each
moment will appear as a thumbnail image. Click it to enlarge.
Try Capzles to build lessons and presentations. Your students will love it!
American History Student Capzules -
The Dustbowl –
From the files of “so easy it’s awesome” is this site.
Student portfolio example -
Another student portolio example – very different look
Class Site -
No matter how much you want to deny it, cool names and flashy advertising is often what draws
you to try out a product. Well, with Weebly.com, I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t check it out
because I liked the name. Of course, once I got to the site, I found it to be a very simple website
maker, and something that teachers might like to use in their classrooms.
For teachers, Weebly offers a very easy way to create a class website and blog. It is different
from some other website creation tools in that you can have both a traditional “static” website as
well as the interactive blog component. This would allow a teacher to offer critical class
information as well as provide a forum for student/teacher discussion and parent feedback.
Also, for people not familiar with building websites, you really don’t have to know anything
except how to click a mouse. There is a tutorial that leads you through the creation of your first
website and adding things like pictures, text, files, etc. It is pretty much as simple as dropping
and dragging. Weebly has some advanced features such as adding audio and video buttons for
which you have to pay, but the basics that you get for free are really quite good. Here is a sample
teacher website I created in about 15 minutes.
For students, I could see this as another resource to allow students to “show what they know” in
a techie way. Rather than make a poster or write a report, students can use Weebly to create a
website. It’s really so simple that I think even elementary students, with minimal adult support,
could build a website using Weebly. Here is another quick example I made of a way students
might use Weebly.
There are many website-building apps out there, but Weebly is one of the simplest and most
effective I’ve worked with. And it has a cool name.