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20 Technology Tools Educators Should Use

20 Technology Tools Educators Should Use

Old-school educators may feel intimidated by the new trends involved in the classroom, but that should only challenge them to make their classes more interesting for the students. There are various online solutions that can really promote the process of education by enabling teachers to organize the classroom activities and inspire students to get more involved. This article will list 20 new apps that promise great potential in terms of education enhancement.

1. Writinghouse.org

whitehouse.com

    Are you looking for an easy way to create your textbooks according to the widely-accepted referencing styles? Citation generator Writinghouse will automatically take care of the citations and bibliographies and format them according to the referencing style you choose (APA, Chicago or MLA).

    2. HowStuffWorks

    how stuff works

      This website is a valuable source of information you can use in the classroom. It explains thousands of topics in an understandable way that your students will find interesting.

      3. HippoCampus

      Hippo Games

        This interesting online project provides multimedia content that can be used for enhancing the quality of general education subjects.

        4. Fun Brain

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        Fun Brain

          It is time to acknowledge the fact that your students are influenced by technology, so you should accept that trend and turn it to your advantage. This website provides games with real educational value for young students.

          5. First In Math

          First In Math

            This online tool can be used to make math skills interesting for young students. It features online games that encourage kids to learn math because they get rewards and stickers from their teachers as they progress.

            6. DoSomething.org

            DoSomething.org

              Every teacher should encourage their students to take part in social campaigns and make an effort to bring positive changes into the society. This website is the perfect source of inspiration that takes students towards real action.

              7. Exploratorium

              Exploratorium

                Did you think that nothing could ever make science fun for your students? Implement this website into the classroom activities and watch how the impossible turns into reality.

                8. Cool Math

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                Cool Math

                  This website features various games that are safe to be used in the classroom and make school subjects interesting for your students. Besides math games, the website is also a source of geography, science, and reading games.

                  9. Edmondo

                  Edmondo

                    This online collaboration hub can inspire your students to use their full learning potential. It makes social media useful by providing customized classrooms that can enhance the learning and teaching experience.

                    10. Collaborize Classroom

                    Collaborize Classroom

                      This is a free collaborative platform that complements your classroom instructions with additional assignments, activities and discussions your students can access after class.

                      11. Weebly

                      Collaborize Classroom

                        This website enables teachers to develop a site or blog for their classroom, which can be used for easy communication with both students and their parents.

                        12. Spelling City

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                        Spelling City

                          This online tool offers games that make the learning experience very easy for young children. They can play writing, vocabulary, and spelling games that will make their education more interesting.

                          13. Starfall

                          Starfall

                            This website can help you teach young children to read through fun online games and interesting interactive storybooks.

                            14. Scratch

                            Scratch

                              Scratch is another website intended to be used by the younger population. However, it teaches them something different than reading and vocabulary–children are invited to create their own stories, animations, and games via this online tool.

                              15. Raz Kids

                              Raz Kids

                                This online source provides an entire curriculum of reading lessons in the form of cute online books. Students from a wide range of ages can use this website to improve their reading skills, and the teacher corner enables the educators to monitor their students’ progress.

                                16. Schoology

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                                Schoology

                                  This is a unique social network and learning management system that can be used by both teachers and students for the development of academic content. The website also allows users to share the content they create.

                                  17. Scholastic Kids Press Corps

                                  Scholastic Kids Press Corps

                                    Your students should be interested in reading news that is appropriate for their age, and this website is the best way to inspire this habit. Teachers are encouraged to incorporate the news they find on this website into their classes.

                                    18. MyBackPack

                                    MyBackPack

                                      Teachers have always been trying to find the most effective way of communication with their students’ parents. This website provides a solution to their problems, by allowing them to share real-time updates on the schedule, grades, and class attendance.

                                      19. iCivics

                                      iCivics

                                        This website will inspire ideas about making positive changes in the community, so educators should definitely present it to their students.

                                        20. Melody Street

                                        Melody Street

                                          Music is already interesting for young students, but learning about notes and different instruments isn’t an easy process. This website makes everything easy because the instruments come to life and teach music lessons in a fun way.

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                                          Last Updated on September 20, 2018

                                          8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

                                          8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

                                          You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

                                          Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

                                          When you train your brain, you will:

                                          • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
                                          • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
                                          • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

                                          So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

                                          1. Work your memory

                                          Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

                                          When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

                                          If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

                                          The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

                                          Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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                                          Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

                                          What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

                                          For example, say you just met someone new:

                                          “Hi, my name is George”

                                          Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

                                          Got it? Good.

                                          2. Do something different repeatedly

                                          By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

                                          Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

                                          It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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                                          And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

                                          But how does this apply to your life right now?

                                          Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

                                          Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

                                          Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

                                          So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

                                          You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

                                          That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

                                          3. Learn something new

                                          It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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                                          For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

                                          Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

                                          You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

                                          4. Follow a brain training program

                                          The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

                                          5. Work your body

                                          You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

                                          Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

                                          Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

                                          Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

                                          6. Spend time with your loved ones

                                          If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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                                          If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

                                          I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

                                          7. Avoid crossword puzzles

                                          Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

                                          Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

                                          Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

                                          8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

                                          Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

                                          When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

                                          So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

                                          The bottom line

                                          Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

                                          Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

                                          Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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