EDIE WEBBER was born in Budapest, Hungary and attended schools in Germany, Surrey, England followed by immigrating to America as a youngster with her family. Currently, she is also an educator in Arizona. She has been involved in linguistic issues and writing for years. She earned a BA degree in English Literature from the University of California, followed by an MA in Education from Regis University in Denver. Teaching is a second life career for her. Currently, she is a high school Advanced Placement and Honors English teacher, as well as an Adjunct instructor for an online university.Part of her past history includes holding numerous positions in politics and service organizations. For four years, she was an elected Mayor and Councilwoman in a California city, where she founded and hosted a cable program. Following this, she was invited to join the staff of an elected Assemblyman as Field Deputy, representing the Assemblyman in various capacities such as giving speeches and writing for the Assemblyman, and dealing with the press. Writing is not only a part of her daily activity with her students, it is also a personal passion. Whether it is poetry or prose, Edie relishes putting keyboard to fingers or pen to hand.
I teach: English
To ages: 14 to 21
This lovely tool is an E-portfolio Formative Assessment methodology. I set up one folder for my classroom notes of students which I can then turn into a dedicated individual folder for my students. I can see this on my phone or tablet instantly. It is nearly impossible to do data collection on students as you go along day to day in the classroom without spending a huge amount of time writing down observations after the fact. My mobile lets me record who is doing what in my own shorthand to be used as assessment at a later time. Evernote has so many classroom applications as a research tool, note-taking platform, and student e-portfolio, and organizer. Put an end to your paper trail! Best of all…it is FREE.
I use Symbaloo to bookmark my favorite websites. The system arranges all my markers into a tile board that you can share with others if you wish. Symbaloo calls these tile boards webmixes. Another popular feature for me and others who use it is that it offers a free iPhone app and a free Android app for your webmixes that you can access anywhere. The only negative is that the educational version is not free except for individual use. But you could have your students create their own Symbaloo accounts and create webmixes around their own favorite topics or class project researching.
Being able to create multimedia posters and reports filled with animations, audio, and video is a dream come true for students. You can donate your posterboard and color markers to someone in the lower grade levels! The students really are into this and there is an option to set up a class account for you. It is easy to use, makes learning fun and eases presentation anxiety. Creating a glog uses a drag and drop system to create make this visual platform in which users create a poster or web page containing a variety of multimedia elements. Then you simply show it to the other students using the overhead projector or Smartboard.
For many years National Geographic has provided factual information in magazine format that is of high quality and interesting to students all over the world. Today, not only do students watch the National Geographic channel at home, but we teachers are able to bring the same quality to the classroom via videos. For example, my subject matter is Western Literature based on the history and development of the west since the Lewis and Clark expeditions. The videos are categorized into subjects, states, people and areas that the students can apply to whatever the topic they are studying or writing about. These videos are effective, easy to use with the overhead projectors, and requires minimum technology.
One of the finer tools to use for not only students but teachers as well. I teach a Western Literature class and one of the units has to do with interviewing members of old ranching families in the area. The students don't always have the opportunity to travel the distances required to physically interview. Skype allows the contact instantly and best of all, freely. Teachers are able to set up these interviews initially with the people and allow the students to follow up from their homes.
I teach a unit on genealogy where the students have to trace their roots to certain locations. It is awesome how faces light up when they use Google Earth to actually locate specific sites, homes, areas and other visual things about their family location histories. It is super simple to use and can be converted into maps and downloaded and printed as well. The value is great since many levels of cognitive learning are utilized and can be adjusted to all types of learners.
There are some unique features in Adobe Acrobat Pro that are not commonly known but are extremely valuable to teachers. The first unique feature is the ability to convert an Acrobat form that is generally downloaded from the Internet to a fill in and print form that can be saved after it has been completed. This is accomplished by selecting "Extend Features In Adobe Reader" under the "Advanced" on the menu bar. This will convert the form with fields to a saveable form. Another unique feature is the ability to directly create an Adobe Acrobat document from a signed document by using the scanned document to PDF feature. Once a document is signed it can be placed in an external scanner. Then by selecting "Create PDF" under the file menu with "From Scanner" selected the document can be automatically converted into an Acrobat document. Adobe Acrobat Pro does a good job of finding the attached scanner without any presets. As each page is scanned it prompts if you want to add another page. The final scanned to PDF document can now be sent via Email. Would recommend to colleagues but not necessarily for student use.
I use this tool for students who are assigned a research project that requires a reference page and intext citations. The strength of this tool is that the references are created automatically in the correct MLA format for the student, and is kept track of for the individual student when he/she logs in. From there, it can be printed out or attached, copied and pasted directly into the text of a document. EasyBib is an automatic generating system saving the student a great deal of work that allows them the time to do the research and writing instead.
I too am a high school English teacher as well as an Online university instructor. I was one of the first teachers to sign up as a buyer and a seller for Teachers pay Teachers when it was first developed and founded by Paul Edelman. This site is easy to use and is categorized into all grade levels, subject matter, and most popular lesson plans.
There is a Wish List tab and a Shopping Basket tab where you can store your items. There is also a method of getting a quick sample glimpse of a particular lesson or handout. For busy teachers who need something unique and quickly, this classy site is for you. The only downside is that there are so many choices so the need is there to carefully delineate what you are looking for.
I also use Wordle with vocabulary. My 11th grade AP students are fairly sophisticated with their knowledge of words and Wordle allows me to notch it up a bit for them. Because this program allows a copy and paste feature, I can quickly determine if my students are using the Wordle words I have assigned for them to include in a book report, essay, or analysis of a poem for example. The most fun use was to have them write their own poetry and use Wordle with their classmates to analyze each other's work. Again it is free and no need to sign up!