Moving at the Speed of Creativity by Wesley Fryer

Most important digital tools for teachers?

In your opinion, what are the most important digital tools for teachers to use personally and with students in the classroom? That is a basic question we will start with in tomorrow’s workshop in Richardson, Texas, which begins at 8:30 am US Central time and runs till about noon.

Please share your ideas and links as comments here, and if you are willing to elaborate over Skype or iChat tomorrow (Monday) morning, indicate that in your comment along with your Skype or iChat ID, and the time that is most convenient for you to virtually “drop in” our workshop.

I can’t offer guarantees that we’ll be able to Skype or iChat in everyone who volunteers, but hopefully we’ll be able to bring in at least a couple of folks. 🙂

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9 responses to “Most important digital tools for teachers?”

  1. Diana Laufenberg Avatar

    I think the most important tools for teachers and students are those that help to build a professional/learning network such as twitter, bloglines/google reader, ning and the like. The real changes that I have seen in my own learning and practice have exponentially increased as I furthered my interaction with my network.

    I will be online tomorrow off and on throughout the work day… 7:45-3:00. Please feel free to skype in to laufty!

  2. Jennifer Wagner Avatar

    I believe that the most important TOOL for teachers and students to build a PLN is the WIKI. Whether it be pbwiki, mediawiki, wetpaint, wikispaces, etc……it is a onestop arena for communication in a variety of ways.

    You can edit, format, communicate, elaborate, add photos, video, audio, bounce back to former data. You can create navigation by topics, dates, student information, chapters, etc. You can see the time when the wiki was edited, by who, what was edited, rss feed the wiki, and receive email notification of updates. You can open the wiki for all to view, all to edit, some to view, some to edit, or make it private. You can install chatrooms, clocks, and a variety of other extra tools.

    It is your one stop arena for PLN….and I will be online as well from 6:30 to 7:15 AM PST. Feel free to skype me too!!


  3. Britt Watwood Avatar
    Britt Watwood

    Last year, Jane Hart in England’s Centre for Learning and Performance Technologies polled over 100 educators for their top tools, and her compiled list is at It is a good place to start for ideas!

  4. Cheryl Lykowski Avatar

    In my classroom, my students and I use wikis (wikispaces), Skype,
    and Audacity on a daily basis. These are our tools that we have
    used to knock down our walls of our classroom as we connect
    and collaborate with other students. As far as my PLN I would say Twitter
    and Skype is what keeps me connected to my network.

  5. Tim Avatar

    I agree with Jennifer that a wiki is the best online communication tool for teachers and students, especially for those just starting in this area. Once they become comfortable with working in that space, there are plenty of other ways to branch out. From there I would go to podcasting, which is a little more complicated but offers many additional options for students to create and express themselves.

  6. Brian Rhea Avatar

    to Use Personally:

    – a news reader (I prefer Google Reader) to keep up with high quality edublogs (2 Cents Worth, Moving @ Speed of Creativity, Fischbowl, to name a few)

    – a account, and I am just learning how useful this network can be so I need to work on mine

    – a podcatcher (I use iTunes with my iPod) to listen to thoughtful and engaging podcasts

    These are the things that keep me personally curious and engaged in professional development and I’ve been working on my own podcast for other art teachers (

    to Use with Students:

    – I’m going to take Jennifer Wagner’s advice and learn more about how to use WIKIs in the classroom

    – I’ve also been inspired by some blogs I’ve seen hosted by where students are interacting with the content on their own time

  7. Jack Avatar

    Most Important Digital Tools for Teacher

    -search engines
    -video/audio players ? DVD, cd, mp3, etc
    -hand held personal assistants

  8. Paul Bogush Avatar

    Planning — wikis
    Podcasts — GCast
    Conversations — Blogs
    Video “conversations” –
    Long Distance Collaboration — Skype
    Easy Presentations for web — Voicethread, PhotoStory

  9. Sandy Wagner Avatar

    Although I would agree that all of the tools mentioned are valuable in the classroom, I think we are taking a few things for granted here. I worked with teachers for many years who were good technology users, but could not really change the way they taught because they had little means of sharing what was on a computer screen with a class.

    If we say digital tools, I assume that the teacher already has a computer and Internet connection. What comes next is simple. An LCD projector. Until we can get 1 to 1 computing in all of our classrooms, we must be able to share the one screen with kids to make any digital tool effective.