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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Free Technology For Teachers: Multiplication Station

Multiplication Station is an open-source program compatible with Mac, Windows, and Linux operating systems. Multiplication Station is designed to help students practice multiplication, division, subtraction, and addition. The game is designed for elementary school students. The latest version of Multiplication Station has been revised to make it easier and faster for students and teachers to get started using the software.

Free Technology For Teachers: The Technology Teacher Podcast

Last week I mentioned a series of great podcasts produced by Ron Kroetz, a technology teacher, in California. In Ron's latest podcast he gave me a great plug, thanks Ron. If you haven't listened to Ron's podcasts yet, check them out by clicking on the podcast feeder below or visit Techteacherlive.com

Free Technology For Teachers: Five Alternatives to YouTube - #5 Hulu

Hulu.com is the newest of the five alternatives to YouTube I've written about today. Hulu received a lot of attention in the Blog-o-sphere when it was beta. Now that Hulu is available to the general public, it seems to be living up to the hype. Hulu offers free videos of popular television shows and full length movies.

Hulu.com is owned and operated as a joint venture of NBC and News Corp. The ownership of Hulu is reflected in the collection of videos that are available for free. Television shows and movies owned by NBC, FOX, MGM, Sony Pictures, and Warner Brothers are available for free viewing on Hulu.com

Hulu.com
hosts current and past television shows and movies. Here is an episode of NBC's News Time Capsule revisiting the Apollo 11 mission and moon landing.

Free Technology For Teachers: Five Alternatives to YouTube - #4 Blip.tv

Blip.tv is a video website that is still in beta, but already has many users and video channels. Blip.tv has four appeals: 1. quality of the videos (much better than YouTube) 2. the option to view videos on Mac TV (and similar devices) 3. the option to syndicate a show on your own website 4. for the average end-user the search by tags option is a nice improvement over typical video search methods.

Blip.tv
aims to be a website that operates almost live a cable television provider. Producers create a regular series of video shows that viewers can "tune to watch" or subscribe to in a feeder. There are hundreds of shows that Blip.tv users can subscribe and watch on a regular basis. The quality of the video channels on Blip.tv are constantly improving because the best shows are competing for possible syndication on cable/satellite television.

Here is an episode from one of my favorite shows available on Blip.tv

Free Technology For Teachers: Five Alternatives to YouTube - #3 Viddler

Viddler is another good alternative to YouTube that provides better image quality and a unique commenting system.

The commenting system on Viddler is what makes it quite unique. Rather than posting comments in a list below a video, users can insert comments into the video itself as the video is playing. Let's say you're watching a video and have a reaction to a particular aspect of the video, you can insert your comment at the exact place in the video where the comment seems appropriate. (The video below demonstrates this better than I can describe it).
Viddler is also a recording service. With a web cam you can record video directly to Viddler. On most video websites you have to upload your video from a file created off line.

Here is a sample video from Viddler about the MacBook Air.

Free Technology For Teachers: Five Alternatives to YouTube - #2 Vimeo

One of the first things you'll notice about Vimeo is the image quality of the videos. Vimeo has nearly 20,000 high definition videos. The image and sound quality of the videos on Vimeo is far superior to those found on YouTube. Vimeo has all of the sharing options found on YouTube, but in a much cleaner and easier to use interface. The search services on Vimeo provide more options than YouTube. For all of Vimeo's side benefits, High Definition is the biggest draw for users.

Here are two short welcome to Vimeo videos, note the quality of the images and audio.

Welcome to Vimeo from Carleton Torpin on Vimeo.


"Vimeo is..." - JD from JD on Vimeo.

Free Technology For Teachers: Five Alternatives to YouTube - #1 Teacher Tube

This is the first of five blog posts featuring alternatives to Youtube.
Teacher Tube has been around for a while now, but I still run into teachers who have not heard of it. Teacher Tube provides user generated videos for teachers by teachers. Many of the videos on Teacher Tube have teachers sharing lesson plans in action. Some videos on Teacher Tube are simply inspirational. And other videos don't have teachers or students in them, but contain educational lessons none the less.
Here is a video of Abbot and Costello solving a math problem.

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