Friday, 28 February 2014

Lesson idea #5: Create goals for the year with your students using Glossi

Glossi.com is a great new publishing platform that enables anyone to create and share their own digital magazines across devices…free. It looked like a great application to use with a Middle School class and I decided to use it as the end point in a lesson about setting goals.


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The aim of the lesson
The students work in groups and discuss goal-setting. They select relevant categories for goal setting. Individually they create their own specific goals for each category and display their top six goals on a Glossi digital publication.


Preparation
My preparation involved getting to know Glossi and practising the lesson before the actual day. Here is a downloadable presentation that I created to aid the students in case they needed to view it.




The lesson

1. I used a variation of the following image to create a different way for the students to form groups of three. The pieces had no names on them and the students had to find their group members.


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2. After sharing their group discussions the class selected seven categories for goals.
•School goals:
•Personal goals:
•Friendship goals:
•Spiritual goals:
•Hobby goals:
•Future goals
•Sport goals:


3. Each person created their own goals for each category and displayed their top eight on a Glossi. As they learned about how to use Glossi I loved the way they shared their tips, ideas and discoveries.

The results



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Two examples of a finished Glossi








My evaluation of Glossi
The students loved using this media. It is a great tool to use to display work in a digital magazine format. I’d like to use it with some of the lower grades as well. 

Further examples of what can be done with Glossi.com
I came across these two digital magazines created with Glossi. Take a look:

1. Awesome digital mash-up tools for creating online learning content
2. Warning! Reading must be fun!

Thursday, 27 February 2014

SchoolNet webinar recording from Thurs 20/2 ‘Create an Internet Start Page using Protopage’



On Thursday afternoon (27 February 2014) at 3.30pm we held a SchoolNet webinar entitled ‘Create an Internet Start page using Protopage’ presented by Fiona Beal from SchoolNet.


The webinar description


imageProtopage is an Internet start page that you can create and use for quick access to everything on the web that you visit the most. You can use it to:
•    Keep bookmarks to frequently accessed web sites
•    Organize your day with to-do lists and sticky notes
•    Create web pages, group pages, and intranets
•    Read news from your favourite news sites and blogs
•    Add widgets such as clocks, calulators, videos, photos, maps and calendars
•    You can set your page to open when you open the Internet
You can keep your page private, make it public, or even set a group password so that you can share parts of it with specific friends or colleagues. Set your Protopage as your personal start page, and it will appear every time you open your web browser!  Protopage is great to use with a class. They can use yours or create their own, personalise their pages, add backgrounds, widgets they like and links to all their Internet creations in other programmes as well as  links to topics they are learning about.   You’ll love using Protopage...


The Presentation

This presentation has been uploaded to the SchoolNet SlideShare account and it can be downloaded by clicking on the link below.

If you missed the webinar you can listen to the webinar recording.  Here is the link:
http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/p8pr3v59xr5/
SchoolNet holds a webinar every Thursday afternoon at 3.30pm

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Schools, join ENO in the 2014 Treelympics starting 21 March! (Win a trip to Finland!)


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The ENO Programme calls schools in the world to join ENO Treelympics, olympiads for tree planting. Their target is to plant 100 million trees by 2017. This commitment was made in the Rio+20 Summit in June 2012. To boost the participation of schools for 100 million trees by 2017, ENO will launch ENO Treelympics, starting 21 March and ending 24 October. 21 March is proclaimed the International Day of Forests by the United Nations.




Every school is invited to take part and plant trees . After trees have been planted, the information (number, species) is submitted online with computers or mobile devices.  Treelympics can be followed online through out the year and number of trees planted. Follow more info here soon.
NOTE: If you have already registered to ENO Tree Planting Day 22 May 2014 on the event website , your registration is automatically valid for Treelympics 2014.


The ENO Olympics are the most environmentally-friendly in the world. Opening ceremonies will be held locally in participating countries. They are thinking of "small burning shovels" instead of torch! They are thinking about getting video clips from each country with some words and put it online.

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ENO has individuals (kids) and team contest (schools, countries). The winners will get flight tickets to Finland for the award ceremony 20 November 2014!!Instead of contest, most important is to take part, in the spirit of ENO.



The website will be launched 20 March but some of it can
already be seen on http://treelympics.enoprogramme.org/ 

Join ENO’s Treelympics today!

Omashani from SchoolNet is the contact person in South Africa. 

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

SchoolNet Webinar on Thursday 27 February 3:30pm ‘Create an Internet Start page using Protopage

webinars1
We are pleased to announce that we will be holding a webinar on Thursday afternoon 27 February at 3.30pm. Here are the details:

Meeting Name: Create an Internet start page using Protopage


Summary: Protopage is an Internet start page that you can create and use for quick access to everything on the web that you visit the most. You can use it to:
• Keep bookmarks to frequently accessed web sites
• Organize your day with to-do lists and sticky notes
• Create web pages, group pages, and intranets
• Read news from your favourite news sites and blogs
• Add fun widgets such as clocks, calulators, ad calendars
• You can set it to pen when you open the Internet
• Read news from your favourite news sites and blogs
You can keep your page private, make it public, or even set a group password so that you can share parts of it with specific friends or colleagues. Set your Protopage as your personal start page, and it will appear every time you open your web browser! Protopage is great to use with a class. They can personalise their pages, add backgrounds, widgets they like and links to all their Internet creations in other programmes as well as links to topics they are learning about. You’ll love using Protopage...
Presenter: Fiona Beal from SchoolNet
Date: Thursday 27 Feb 2014 from 3:30 PM - 3:45 PM
Duration: 15 – 20 minutes
Time Zone: (GMT+02:00) Pretoria
To join the meeting:
http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/protopage/

Please feel free to join us. Click on the URL and enter as a guest with your name.

Note: If you have never attended an Adobe Connect meeting before or if you haven’t attended an Adobe Connect meeting for a while you might need to install a free add-in. Test your connection:
http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/common/help/en/support/meeting_test.htm

Monday, 24 February 2014

Intel Training benefits schools around South Africa

Submitted by Omashani Naidoo from SchoolNet
Intel has been conducting training for teachers around South Africa using SchoolNet to conduct the training. Here are reports on how the training progressed at two of the schools.


Marotse Primary School
This school lies in Atameleng in the North West province. It received sponsorship of computer hardware and an interactive whiteboard through MTN. This venue also has stable connectivity even when all users are connected simultaneously. Eighteen teachers attended this training.


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Most of the teachers were computer literate at the start. The principal and two young teachers stood out particularly as shining stars. It is assumed that these teachers gained their exposure and interest whilst at University, and this has helped them become ICT champions. Intel Teach Getting Started was the perfect choice for this school, although with the limited training days, only a few modules of the course were covered. These included 21st century skills, using a word processor, getting to grips with spreadsheets and creating multimedia. The trainer arranged to visit the school every afternoon until the end of the term to ensure that teachers were skilled enough to maximise the use of the connectivity sponsored by MTN.


Christchurch Christian Preparatory School




This school, based in Midrand,  is part of a special project with Running computers who installed an Intel Classmate solution at the school. Participants accessed the course material from the server of the IT lab. Mr Gavin Theron indicated that twenty teachers would be in attendance, the bulk of them with novice skills and a few with intermediate skills. Training started with the introduction of the course objectives and the outline of the training programme. The trainer discussed the module and the navigation aspects as well as the important points to remember. Participants were encouraged to complete their personalised handbooks so that they could track their learning journeys. Differentiation of cooperative learning, group work and collaboration were discussed at length. Engaging learners in higher order thinking was also discussed and the 'plan, do, review and share' cycle was completed.

clip_image002[6]The facilitator used the shaping and fading methodology to introduce teachers to activities and then let them complete the activities on their own. The trainer was also able to setup an online collaboration tool which can be accessed at www.todaysmeet.com/ccps They further discussed how these collaboration tools including blogs, wikis and social networking platforms such as Twitter and Facebook could be used by educators and the learners in teaching and learning situations and everyone agreed how important it was to embrace such tools. The teachers were very appreciative of the Intel course training and they gave plenty of positive feedback in the course evaluation. :

The report outlining all the Intel training can be read here.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Lesotho teachers create stories for Matuto™ Literacy for Life (and you can too!)

Submitted by Megan Rademeyer
imageThe teachers and final year Lesotho College of Education teaching students who received Windows 8 mobile phones as part of the Matuto™ Literacy for Life partnership last year are hard at work creating short stories to share with emerging readers. Feedback from this group led to the creation of the Chekhov Phone App which makes it easy to create and publish a story from a Windows 8 mobile phone. Whilst SchoolNet SA is specifically encouraging Lesotho teachers to share their stories, this global project is open to anyone who would like to create a story. This could be a fun class project, providing learners with an opportunity to create and share something they have written with a genuine global audience. If you would like to participate download the Chekhov app if you have a Windows 8 phone.

Then create a short book on the www.lit4life.net website.


Chekhov



To find out more about this project and to see instructions for using the Ckekhov Phone App join the “Literacy for Life” group on Facebook

Download the instructions for using this Chekhov app from Slideshare (see link below) or from Box.net here


SchoolNet webinar recording from Thursday Feb 20 at 3:30pm ‘Get to know Knowmia’ (Linda Foulkes)


webinar recording2

On Thursday afternoon (20 February 2014) at 3.30pm we held a SchoolNet webinar entitled ‘Get to know Knowmia’presented by Linda Foulkes of Elkanah High School in Cape Town. You’ll see that Linda has also provided a document summarising her research into tools that can be used across devices since her High School uses the BYOD approach.

The webinar description

Linda summarised her presentation like this: ‘"Increase student engagement with this amazing high quality tool, Knowmia, which allows one to create student interactive assignments and video lessons. Knowmia is available for free and can be used on all devices , or from within any web browser. Knowmia also has an iPad App, called Knowmia Teach, which is free and provides students or teachers with added functionality, including face recording within your lesson. An added benefit in Knowmia is the assessment tool as teachers are able to track lessons in real-time and exchange feedback with students. This tool is wonderful to use in and out of the classroom. This webinar will highlight why Knowmia is a tool not to be missed! In addition, I will share a comparative list of video lesson creating tools which I have evaluated to save you time when choosing the right tool."

The Presentation
Linda’s presentation has been uploaded to the SchoolNet SlideShare account and t can be downloaded by clicking on the link below.





The Webinar Recording
If you missed the webinar you can listen to the webinar recording.  Here is the link: http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/p2amz03s911/ (Unfortunately there were a few sound issues during the webinar)

Additional research done by LindaLinda teachers at Elkanah House High which is a school that uses the BYOD policy (Bring Your Own Device) At the webinar she kindly gave us a link to some research she conducted on different tools  for conducting flipped lessons across devices. Here is COMPARISON OF TOOLS ACROSS DEVICES TO FLIP LESSONS which can be downloaded.

SchoolNet's webinars are presented every Thursday afternoon at 3.30pm  (GMT+2).

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Out and About & Walk The Talk ICT4RED Modules Training in Cofimvaba


Submitted by Hlengiwe Mafeka from SchoolNet
Teachers in the Cofimvaba ICT4RED project schools have been methodically working through modules of their professional development course since July 2013.

gallery walk
Gallery walk
mgcawezulu class
Preparing for the Gallery Walk
 
The seventh and the eighth module sessions of the ICT4RED Cofimvaba Teacher Professional Development were conducted at Queens College in Queenstown on Saturday 1 February 2014. Module 8 (which was conducted in the morning session) concentrated on the Gallery Walk teaching strategy. 


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Out and about
The emphasis was on the Gallery Walk as a teaching strategy and how it can be used in the classroom to engage learners in critical discussions or real life topics. It involved creating a Gallery Walk session in a classroom, using social media platforms to participate in educational online discussions. Another activity that was important in Module 8 is how a professional learning community or network works and how it can develop teacher professional learning.

Module 7 uses the Scavenger Hunt strategy that allows the class to go on a Field Trip to have real experience that is related to any academic content area. The Scavenger Hunt also helps as a basis or template to design other possible field trip ideas that can be adapted for classroom work. This is a way to enhance student learning in a good number of learning areas.



scavenger hunt going wild
Scavenger Hunt
scavenger hunt grp twisting faces
Scaveger hunt

The two modules were very much appreciated by the teachers. They learnt a lot of new skills and went home more informed than when they came. The afternoon session was fantastic -They had a blast! They were very energetic and pleased with the activities they were engaged in. They all left motivated and positive about the project. This time they were not anxious to leave in the early afternoon compared to the previous clustered sessions.

It is hoped that these two teaching strategies will be applied in schools and receive even higher popularity among learners. Read the full report here...


Limpopo TV White Spaces kicks off


Submitted by Megan Rademeyer
Five schools in Mankweng, Limpopo are to be provided with connectivity and Microsoft Windows 8 devices through the TV White Spaces pilot project. SchoolNet SA has been appointed to provide professional development to teachers from these schools to help ensure that they maximise the benefits that a connected classroom bring to education. 


White Spaces

So far champion teachers from each of the schools have attended the ICT Skills for Teachers course and in the coming months they will also attend sessions on Using Office 365 in the Classroom and the Microsoft Innovation Course. Between 30 January and 1 February 2014 stakeholders from the various White Spaces schools participated in a Policy and Vision workshop. This workshop involved thinking through the benefits of the project and the potential challenges that may need to be overcome. A highlight of this session was representatives from Microsoft demonstrating the Windows 8 devices, providing an opportunity for teachers and learners to practice swiping the Windows 8 tiles for the first time.


To read more about this project go to http://goo.gl/pMZcPY

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Adobe Youth Voices Community Update February 20, 2014

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We would like to include on our blog a copy of this newsletter from Adobe Youth Voices for interested educators

Dear Adobe Youth Voices Educators,
Only 11 days remain until the Adobe Youth Voices Scholarships deadline – please encourage eligible youth to begin their applications now! The application will be closed at 11:59 pm Pacific Standard Time (UTC-8) on March 3, 2014. The application can be accessed at www.adobescholarship.com. Remind youth that once they start the application and provide their general contact information, they can come back to complete the application at any time. The sooner they begin, the more time they will have to receive guidance and ensure that their applications are thoroughly completed by the March 3 deadline. Please email AdobeScholarship@iie.org with any questions, and best of luck!


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The Online Rough Cut Review is in full swing – have you uploaded work and shared feedback for the event? From now until March 28, AYV Lead Educators will review media being prepared for the AYV Awards and provide feedback to help elevate the quality of the pieces. Meet our two Lead Educator Reviewers for this week – Tanya Neub from Canada and Thomas Joseph from India. See some of the other great ways these educators have recently contributed to the Community: Idea Generating Lessons andStudents Learn to Design a Newspaper.

More than 50 young media makers participated in the first AYV San Jose Film Camp of the year earlier this month, ready to connect, create, and collaborate. Read about the event and the biggest takeaways applicable to all media makers in the AYV Community Story, Adobe Youth Voices San Jose Film Camp. Best wishes to all the participants as they complete their projects!

While some programs are gearing up for Rough Cut, others are celebrating their successful completion of projects. Held in the past week, the AYV Live! Delhi and AYV Live! Bangalore proved to be a huge success for both youth artists and their educators. And next week, AYV youth in Canada will be screening their works at the first annualMalvern Film Festival. Congratulations to all the youth!

The Media Review is buzzing with activity lately. Take a look at some of the great work uploaded in the past few weeks – such as Themed Subway Art, When War Comes Home, and No Smoking – and be sure to leave your feedback!

All the best,
The Adobe Youth Voices Team

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

SchoolNet webinar: Getting to know Knowmia -Thursday 20/02 at 3.30pm


webinars1

We are pleased to announce that we will be holding a SchoolNet webinar  this Thursday afternoon 20 February at 3.30pm. We invite you to join us if you can.


imageTitle: Getting to know Knowmia
Description: Linda Foulkes who is the presenter says, "Increase student engagement with this amazing high quality tool, Knowmia, which allows one to create student interactive assignments and video lessons. Knowmia is available for free and can be used on all devices , or from within any web browser. Knowmia also has an iPad App, called Knowmia Teach, which is free and provides students or teachers with added functionality, including face recording within your lesson. An added benefit in Knowmia is the assessment tool as teachers are able to track lessons in real-time and exchange feedback with students. This tool is wonderful to use in and out of the classroom. 
This webinar will highlight why Knowmia is a tool not to be missed! In addition, I will share a comparative list of video lesson creating tools which I have evaluated to save you time when choosing the right tool."
Presenter: Linda Foulkes from Elkanah House High School
Invited By: Fiona Beal (fiona@schoolnet.org.za)
Date: 02/20/2014 3:30 PM - 3:45 PM
Time Zone: (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria
To join the meeting: http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/knowmia/


Please feel free to join us.   Click on the URL and enter as a guest with your name.

Note
: If you have never attended an Adobe Connect meeting before or if you haven’t attended an Adobe Connect meeting for a while you might need to install a free add-in. Test your connection:
http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/common/help/en/support/meeting_test.htm

Monday, 17 February 2014

Great News! Announcing the 2014 Google in Education Summit in Johannesburg in July!

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We invite you to join us for the 2nd Annual South Africa Google in Education Summit on 3rd and 4th July 2014 at Dainfern College in Johannesburg. The event is being presented by the  EdTechTeam in partnership with SchoolNet South Africa and Dainfern College Please visit the Conference website at http://za.gafesummit.com/   to register for early bird prices and stay tuned for awesome presenters and more information. Pre-conference workshops will be held on 1st and 2nd July.

What is the Google Summit all about?
This high intensity two day event focuses on deploying, integrating, and using Google Apps for Education and other Google Tools to promote student learning in K-12 and higher education. The programme features Google Certified Teachers, Google Apps for Education Certified Trainers, practicing administrators, solution providers, Google engineers, and representatives from the Google education teams. 


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A recap on the amazing 2013 Google Summit
The first very successful Google Summit in South Africa was held in September last year. “Wow” and “Awesome” were the most commonly used expressions at the Summit and teachers were overwhelmed with the presentations given by the Google Ed Tech Team and other selected presenters. If you would like to read more about the summit we have two blogposts on our SchoolNet blog.   
Anthony Egbers from Dainfern College, the 2014 host school,  also wrote a great reflection on the 2013 Google Summit on his own blog 10 things I will be taking from the za.gafesummit.com
Please pass on the news of the Google Summit to your colleagues and register today.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Webinar recording for SchoolNet’s webinar–Great web-based sites (or free aplications) for publishing student writing online – Thursday 13/02


webinar recording

On Thursday afternoon 13 February at 3.30pm we held a SchoolNet webinar about various free sites that can be used to encourage student online writing.  The webinar Sideshare and recording can be accessed below.

Title: ‘Great web-based sites (or free aplications) for publishing student writing online’

Summary of webinar:
Nowadays instead of keeping your students’ writing confined to an exercise book in the classroom let your students use free web-based tools to make the most beautiful online creations.  These tools are very simple to use and have friendly interfaces. This keeps students engaged and gives them a sense of achievement as they can easily share their work with their families and friends. The webinar will cover free applications such as Glossi, Youblisher,  Microsoft Photostory 3, Slideshare, Authorstream, Slideboom and several others. 
Presenter: Fiona Beal from SchoolNet

The webinar presentation on Slideshare
Here is the presentation which is freely downloadable via SchoolNet’s Slideshare.




The webinar recording 
If you missed the webinar you can listen to the webinar recording here is the link and the video:
http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/p49vwzheycd/


SchoolNet's webinars are presented every Thursday afternoon at 3.30pm  (GMT+2).

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Digital Storytelling #1: 10 useful web-based sites for publishing student writing online

A very popular global outlook today is that instead of keeping your students’ writing confined to exercise books in the classroom it's a good idea to let them use free web based tools to make the most beautiful online creations. This keeps students engaged and give them a sense of achievement as they can easily share their work with their families and friends. Studies have shown that publishing student work beyond the classroom encourages authentically engaged students who create high-quality work, and that the integration of writing and visual content increases cognitive retention.

The question is - how does one go about discovering these tools for publishing student work online? In this post I'm going to touch on a few useful tools I have come across, from primary level and going up to high school level, that are great for displaying student work. These tools are simple to use and have friendly interfaces. I won’t touch on digital storytelling tools this time around.
 
1. Blogs

Blogging is a high interest method of getting students to write. Using technology is a motivator for many of our students. Blogging is a great way to teach digital citizenship in a classroom and students can continue their blogs at home or from any place where they have an internet connection such as a cell phone. My three favourite blog sites for school use are:

  • Kidblogs for the younger students
  • Edublogs (a Wordpress site) for Primary School students 
  • Blogger for older students and classroom blogs 

2. Glossi
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Visit Glossi at www.glossi.com. Glossi is a free, online digital magazine creation tool that enables one to create professional-looking yet simple digital magazines. Choose a theme, topic, interest, hobby or passion to write about and then add images from your computer, a URL, or Google. Publish your digital magazine in an engaging e-book format. Here is a great example of a Glossi magazine created by Kelly Walsh from EmergingEdTech called ‘Awesome digital mash-up tools for creating online learning content’.

Glossi.com - Awesome Digital Mash Up Tools for Creating Digital Learning Content

3. Youblisher.com


Visit Youblisher at http://www.youblisher.com. This is a free application that turns your PDFs into beautiful, easy-to-read online magazines complete with page-turning effects. The documents you upload to your Youblisher account can be embedded into a blog or website. 

Here is an example of an online book created from a PDF using Youblisher.com. (Click on the link below the image. )


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4. Isuu.com

Issuu is another tool that students can use to upload almost any document format and create a virtual flipping book. Once uploaded you can share or embed your documents online. 


Here is an example of a Youblisher publication created by Martin Burett’s Class M – Seahore Poetry.


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5. SlideShare


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Visit Slideshare at http://www.slideshare.net/ Slideshare is a free, online community created for users to upload, download, and share slideshows with each other.  The slide shows are created in PowerPoint or in a rpogramme that can be saved as a PDF, and hey are then uploaded to Slideshare.After that, you are free to share your file with the world through a URL, an embed code, or an email!

Here is an example of a SlideShare that shows how to create a a Glossi. SchoolNet’s Slideshare collection can be viewed at. http://www.slideshare.net/Schoolnetsa11


6. AuthorSTREAM



Visit AuthorSTREAM at http://www.authorstream.com/. AuthorSTREAM, like SlideShare, is a free, online community created for users to upload, download, and share slideshows with each other.  The slide shows are created in PowerPoint or in a programme that can be saved as a PDF, and they are then uploaded to SlideShare. Notice how you can add voice to an AuthorStream publication such as in this presentation called ‘Digital Storytelling’.

7. Google Drive


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Google Drive (https://drive.google.com) lets you store up to 15GB of your stuff for free, access your files from anywhere, and collaborate with others. It also allows you to create documents, spreadsheets, presentations and forms.  Add files by downloading Google Drive for your PC or using the red upload button.


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8. Slideboom


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Visit Slideboom at http://www.slideboom.com/ SlideBoom is a place for sharing PowerPoint presentations and slideshows on the web. It converts your presentation to Flash for quick and easy viewing. You don't have to worry whether someone has the right version of PowerPoint. You can upload PowerPoint presentations, tag them, include them in your blog or web site, and receive comments on them. Keynote presentations can be exported as PowerPoints and uploaded to Slideboom.

9. Microsoft Photostory 3


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This is a lovely free application from Microsoft for creating photostories with words and pictures. With Photostory 3  you can add and rearrange photos, write on photos, choose transitions, narrate voice, and create your own music using their tools or add your own music. Photostory 3 is not a publsihing site as such but it can be saved as a movie and uploaded to YouTube, blog, wiki, etc. Ideas that show how Photostory 3 can be used in a classroom can be found here

10. FlipsnackEdu
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Visit Flipsnack Edu at http://edu.flipsnack.com/.  FlipSnack is a flipping book software that lets you convert PDF documents into Flash page flip digital publications that you can embed into your blog or website. FlipSnack Edu is an online teaching software for schools, a safe network for teachers and students. Great tool for flip teaching and flipped classrooms.

Why not try out some of these tools for publishing your students’ work? You’ll be amazed at how easy it all is to use and how effective online publishing can be.