Sunday, February 24, 2008

Free Technology For Teachers: Bill Gates Speaking at Stanford

Earlier this week I wrote a brief bit about an interview Bill Gates did with CNET News. In that interview Gates stated that the value of Yahoo was in the engineers and their ideas not in the technology and market share already in existence.

In this video of Bill Gates speaking at Stanford, as you might expect, you will hear him speak about the future ubiquity of software applications. Toward the end of the video though you will hear Gates take a turn toward more humanitarian topics. Gates talks about world wide poverty and the role of technology in teaching students about poverty. Gates also speaks about the potential ability of technology to help lift world-wide living standards. Is Gates right, will technology help educate students about the plight of others? Will technology help to improve living standards?

Free Technology For Teachers: Free Surveys and Charts

Free Online is a better choice than many of the other free survey websites available on the Internet. Free Online is better because it gives survey creators the option of allowing long, open-ended responses to survey questions. Most free survey programs only allow short answers or multiple choice answers. Another benefit of Free Online is the number of responses and questions you can put into each survey is much greater than the alternative free survey creators.

Applications for Educators
Online surveys are a good way to have students do a self-assessment of their learning. I've started using short surveys with my students to have them do self-assessments. I then take the data from those self-assessments to determine what concepts or content areas with which my students are struggling.
With Free Online teachers could create an online quiz. Setting up an account and survey can be done in minutes on Free Online