Welcome to my newly created blog. My intention and goal of this blog is to share technology tools for teachers and educators. I am a 6th grade teacher in suburban Chicago, IL and am always on the look out for the newest and greatest Web 2.0 application or something to help bring my curriculum to life in an engaging way. All of the stuff I will post here will be things I have either found or stolen from a conference or a colleague. I will do my best to give credit to all that I have stolen from! I will also do my best to share things that I have actually tried myself with "real life" students so if you have questions don't hesitate to ask!
The first tool I wanted to toss up is one I recently picked up at the ISTE conference in Denver, CO. Being a Language Arts teacher I like to find new ways to engaged kids in writing and vocabulary. One site that I think many teachers are familiar with is http://www.wordle.net/ which allows you to create a word cloud or collage of sorts. However, it is fairly limited in terms of really going to the next step and creating shapes and more advanced options. So, check out http://www.tagxedo.com/ and see the difference. Not only can you create the word clouds, but you can also manipulate those clouds into specific shapes. So if you are doing a poetry unit and want to have students take their writing and put it into shapes, this is your site. It is really just a fun way to get kids to interact with vocabulary. The great thing is that you can do this in any subject area. Think about taking your key vocabulary terms from your unit on Ancient Rome and putting it into the shape of Italy... cool stuff!