Nicole Rosario
Voicethread

www.voicethread.com
Voicethread is a tool designed for students and educators. Its purpose is to create a private and controlled, internet based space to share ideas, documents, images, lesson plans or personal stories with the education community and students.
· Special features
o Intended to work as a talking storyboard or slideshow
o Very easy to use
o User friendly for all skill levels
o Must be a member of the educational community
· Strengths
o Anyone can access the posted Voicethreads, however, you must be invited to comment on someone’s work
o Easy to use and possesses all the right tools for people with varying skill levels
o Excellent resource for teachers to gather new ideas
· Possible weaknesses
o There is no animation other then basic drawing over an image
o Basic tool, not for well versed “techie” people
Cannot edit slides in Voicethread

Similar Web 2.0/Library 2.0 Tools
· Similar tool #1
www.flickr.com
o How is this tool similar?
Online community intended to share ideas
Web based product
Same sharing abilities for slideshows
o How is it different?
Allows videos to be incorporated
Not soley intended for the education community

· Similar tool #2
www.jing.com
o How is this tool similar?
Very easy to use
Ability to “snap shot”
With record on mute, abilities are very similar to voicethread
Must be emailed or invited to view
o How is it different?
Jing captures full screen of any computer page
Must download software onto computer
More options in terms of what is capturable

· Similar tool #3
www.photostory.com
o How is this tool similar?
Online community intended to share ideas
Same functionality for creating photo slideshow projects
o How is it different?
Not necessarily intended for the education community
Can change photo effects, font and text placement

Connection to teaching and learning
Voicethreads are an excellent resource for teachers. With Voicethreads, teacher can preplan for absences, ensuring students stay on track with prerecorded lesson plans. Teacher can also utilize Voicethreads for engaging projects, whether prerecording or utilizing to collaborate with students. Voicethreads can be made to promote an event, a new club or department, a special project by staff or student. Additionally, for really excellent lessons, teachers can post their lessons with voiceovers for all in the education community. Below are two examples of Voicethreads created by teachers.
Calculus lesson deconstructed by teacher
http://voicethread.com/share/303146/
21st Century Skills by a librarian
http://voicethread.com/share/273984/

Examples of student work
Below are two links to student created Voicethreads. Students love to utilize technology in classroom settings. Voicethreads are an excellent way to incorporate technology, engaging students and allowing them to be creative (in the technologically advanced way that scares most teachers). With a quick tutorial, students can create imaginative, useful Voicethreads and share them with their classmates, family and friends –school projects they can truly be proud of.
Language Learning, a collaborative student Voicetread
http://voicethread.com/share/37780/
Three Little Pigs, read by a student
http://voicethread.com/share/1391/


Instructions

http://screencast.com/t/NTRkNmZhMjk

Final comment
Voicethread is a very useful tool for a school media center or classroom teacher; the possibilities are endless. Students enjoy creating projects that reflect their creativity and personal style. Teachers can tailor lessons for their students ensuring they meet their instructional objective and differentiating their teaching style.
Voicethread.com offers an easy, user friendly tool that can be easily adapted to the teachers needs. Skrbl.com seems bulked and to have too many options, more than someone like me would like. Jing is also a very useful tool. It has excellent options for making video tutorials. For purposes of teaching a prerecorded lesson, Voicethreads is a better option.


Resources

"Best Web sites for Teaching and Learning" (2009)
http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/aasl/guidelinesandstandards/bestlist/bestwebsitestop25.cfm

“Voicethread Competitors” (2010),
http://www.web2review.com/site/3652-VoiceThread/competitors/
www.skrbl.com
www.jing.com
www.voicethread.com