Trippin’ into Web 2.0 Tools!
A Virtual Field Trip for EDUC 8Y24/8Y34 Teaching & Learning with Technology
Welcome! This virtual field trip will introduce you to Web 2.0 tools that are currently used in instructional settings. Virtual field trips can be used in instruction to introduce learners to places too remote to visit—OR toooo virtual—through the Internet. This is an exploration of Web 2.0 tools, and because there is no library, museum, or physical building where we can go to learn about Web 2.0—this is one of those virtual trips!

Today, we will be using seven Web 2.0 tools that tech-savvy teachers need! This VFT will provide a bit of knowledge and an introduction to those tools!! Throughout the Virtual Field Trip, you will have opportunities to discover that Web 2.0 Tools are all about collaboration, which is considered the new 21st century literacy for digital learners, by doing the following:
  • Sharing WHILE you learn (through social networking tools)
  • Sharing by collaboratively building collective resources (using Delicious, Wikis, Edublogs)
  • AND Sharing your reflections on the lessons learned from this exploration (through ISAAK)

So enjoy the stops along the way—each will introduce you to a new tool and provide links for you to explore—that’s what a virtual field trip does!! You will might want to record notes about what you see and are exploring because you will be asked to prepare a short posting about what you found that was new to you, informative for you, or REALLY exciting! :-)

Let’s get started!

Sharing while you learn!!
Many social networking tools allow you to share while you learn. Examples of other social networks include facebook, MySpace, and the Brock Learning Network! Reflection is one of those metacognitive thinking activities that teachers use to help learners process information—blending new knowledge with prior knowledge to construct a solid knowledge base. Social networking tools provide a forum for that type of activity. Also, social networks provide learners with opportunities to communicate ideas, practice writing for an audience, and engage in an authentic, real-world experience!!

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Let’s begin our learning adventure by exploring one of the many social networking tools available online—Twitter! Notice that when you log into Twitter, Twitter asks, “What’s happening?” and provides a box for you to insert up to 140 characters not words!) of text. A better term for that might be “What are you thinking?” For instructional purposes, ‘tweets’ require learners to think about what is going on during instruction, summarize it succinctly, and share. That action—processing of information to share succinctly—is one of the best instructional strategies teachers use to ensure learners construct knowledge, which must for deep learning to occur!! We will be using that strategy in this class to promote learning during class times. Now, let’s explore the tool! Click here to work through your exploration of Social Networking at VIRTUAL STOP 1!!

twitter.jpgTWEET Reminder! [5 minutes]
You will be reminded throughout this virtual field trip to ‘tweet’ any “ah-ha” moments you are having, any great articles or resources you find, or any questions you would like answered as the tour progresses. You need to complete at least TWO additional tweets during the tour!! Don’t forget to include a hashtag +your classgroupname of your section! Take five minutes now and see if you can add a tweet that describes what you are thinking about Twitter or the use of technology in instruction. The comment can be a reflection, an “ah-ha” comment, a question, a resource that is connected to your tweeting experience, or just a thought. If you aren’t ready to comment yet—no worries! You will have additional time later; just remember that you must tweet twice during this tour!

Sharing Resources!!
Teachers are always finding and sharing great web sites and other Internet resources. Collecting and storing resources that are related to a specific topic under study or relevant to learning needs of a class or group is not only worthwhile, but serves to build a collection of recommended resources that can be used again and again. We will explore THREE great ways to share resources: 1) collective bookmarks, 2) wiki or blogs with streaming video, and 3) RSS Feed Readers that automatically update!!

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Let's begin by sharing great web sites! What if we could access those sties from any computer with Internet access? That is what THIS STOP is about! We usually keep our favorites or bookmarks on our own computers, and then share one web site at a time with others through a discussion board, email, or tweet. However, we can collect all of those into one large bookmark list that is accessible to everyone. Let's explore such a bookmark list created for a computer class similar to your—let’s get Delicious at VIRTUAL STOP 2!!

twitter.jpgTWEET Reminder! [5 minutes]
Have you recently posted an update to your Twitter account??? Now is a good time, as you can reflect on how YOU might use Delicious bookmarks in your classroom!

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With and easily searchable, finding video clips related to educational topics of interest is simple! These same video clips can be collected and easily embedded and stored in blogs, wikis, and web pages for sharing with classes or groups. VIRTUAL STOP 3 on your virtual tour will introduce you to the process for storing these great videos!

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Podcasts can often take the form of a streamed video, but audio podcasts are easily created and shared with others as well. VIRTUAL STOP 4 is an optional stop, as many of the resources are up on the Handy4class Delicious bookmark site. However, if you have time, exploring VIRTUAL STOP 4 will help you discover how podcasts are being used in the classroom!

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In 1994, Ward Cunningham was sitting in the Hawaiian airport, waiting for a shuttle to a hotel. He had just invented a small Internet program that would create a web page and publish it—no separate application needed. He was looking for a catchy name for this web editor when the bus for the hotel rolled up. He noticed the name of the bus—the wiki wiki—and asked the driver what that meant. As it turns out, ‘wiki wiki’ means 'fast' or 'quick' in Hawaiian, and that inspired Cunningham to name his new tool, the wiki! He chose this name so the tool would stand for the 'fast' web page, because the tool allowed web page creating and editing WITHOUT expensive software, hosting services, or the need for a web master—really fast web pages! We are all familiar with Wikipedia, an encyclopedia built one article at a time by different authors. Readers provide input and corrections, so that the information is usually accurate, fair, and current—gone are the days when teachers would not let their students use the Wikipedia for assignments. Academics and experts across the world monitor and refine the Wikipedia so that now it is a robust resource for everyone.

However, a wiki is useful for other purposes as well! It gives teachers the ability to create their own web site easily and cheaply! VIRTUAL STOP 5 will take you on an exploration of wikis!!

twitter.jpgTWEET Reminder! [5 minutes]
Have you recently posted an update to your Twitter account??? Now is a good time while you are thinking about wikis!!


There are many information sources on the Internet that are regularly updated. These include news stations, organizations, event calendars, weather sites, blogs, and wikis. These sites provide RSS Feeds that will update automatically for you in a Feed Reader if you set one up! VIRTUAL STOP 6 will help you explore an RSS Feed Reader and show you how to subscribe to various sites so that the latest information is collected and saved for class use!

twitter.jpgTWEET Reminder! [5 minutes]
Have you recently posted an update to your Twitter account??? Perhaps you could comment on a great web site that others might want to subscribe to using RSS Feeds!

Sharing Lessons Learned!!
FINAL STOP! Thank you for trippin’ through Web 2.0 teacher tools with us on our virtual tour today! We hope you enjoyed this brief look at many of the tools used by the tech savvy teacher of 21st century students! This is the end of the virtual field tip—you were introduced to tools that allowed you to communicate, collaborate, and share with an audience. So far, we’ve shared while we were learning, shared collective resources, and now we will share lessons learned from this exploration. Sharing lessons learned during the various explorations could be completed using ANY of the Web 2.0 tools. However, we will be using a Course Management Tool (ISAAK) which is how you will submit ALL of your assignments! Your FINAL STOP will explain how!!

Thank you for trippin’ through Web 2.0 teacher tools with us on our virtual tour today! We hope you enjoyed this brief look at many of the tools used by the tech savvy teacher of 21st century students!