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Friday, August 15, 2014

Two Good Random Name Selection Tools

At one point or another every teacher has asked for volunteers and not had any hands raised. In that situation using a random name selection tool is an easy way to choose students to call on. And for those times when all of your students raise their hands for something fun like being the line leaders, the a random name selector is a convenient tool to have at your disposal too. Here are two good random name selection tools.

Random Name Picker is a free tool from Russel Tarr at Classtools.net. The Random Name Picker lets you input names and spin a virtual wheel to have a name randomly selected from the list. After a name is selected you can remove it from the wheel so that it is not selected again. Random Name Picker is free to use and does not require a registration on Classtools.net. You can save your lists by assigning passwords to them. You can re-use your saved lists. The Random Name Picker wheel can be embedded into your blog or website. The Random Name Picker was written in HTML5 so that it will run in the browser of your iPad.

The Random Name Selector from Primary Technology is a simple tool for picking names from a list you've created. To use the selector just type in or copy a list of names then hit "go." Once a name is selected you have the option of launching a two minute or seven minute countdown timer. You also have the option to remove a name from the list after it has been selected. Watch the video below to learn a little more and see the Random Name Selector in use.


How to Import Blogger and Other Blog Feeds Into Google Sites

During a workshop today in Delta, Colorado a teacher asked me if he could import his Blogger blog into Google Sites. Yes, you can import Blogger blog feeds into Google Sites. You can also import the RSS feeds of other blogs into your Google Site. To do this you will open the "insert menu" while editing a page in your Google Site, select "more gadgets," choose "RSS Feed," then enter the address of the blog that you want displayed in your Google Site. I've outlined this process in the screenshots below. Click the images to view them in full size.

1. Find the address of the RSS feed. If you're using Blogger for your blog, use the process below.

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A Collection of Examples of Classroom Blogs

As the new school year starts many teachers will be trying to develop classroom blogs for the first time or revamping old blogs for the new year. The slides below contain examples of classroom blogs. You may find a new-to-you idea in these examples. The slides were created last fall with the help of many readers of Free Technology for Teachers.

A Big Collection of iPad Apps for Middle School Teachers and Students

Today, I spent the day working with some super friendly and awesome middle school teachers in Delta, Colorado.  If you're interested in seeing some of what we explored, the outline of the day is available here. At the end of the outline I included a link to all of the apps that I have categorized on iPadApps4School.com as appropriate for middle school. That list is available here. The highlights of the list are included in this short slideshow that I created earlier this summer.

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