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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Engage Students in History With Fake Facebook and Fake SMS

Over the years Russel Tarr has developed and released a bunch of wonderful tools through ClassTools.net. Two of my favorite tools that he has developed are Fakebook and the fake SMS Generator.

Fakebook is Russel's tool for creating fake Facebook profiles. The latest version of Fakebook makes it easy to create a page by just clicking on a field and entering as much information as you like. In the profile picture field you can enter a name and Fakebook will search for images to use. For example, if you create a Fakebook page about George Washington Fakebook will search for pictures of George Washington.


The Classtools SMS Generator is free to use and does not require students to log-in. To use the SMS Generator just click the left speech bubble icon and enter a message. Then to create a reply just click the right speech bubble icon and enter a new message. You can make the exchange as long as you like. To share the conversation click the sprocket icon and grab the embed code, direct link, or QR code for the exchange.


Applications for Education
Creating a fake Facebook profile could be a fun way for students to organize information that they know and or find about a famous person. You could also have students create profiles for characters in a novel that they are reading for your literature course. Take a look at the Fakebook profile gallery for more ideas about using Fakebook in your classroom.

You could have students use the Classtools SMS Generator to create simple conversations between historical characters as way to get them to think about those peoples' lives and the conversations that they might have had.