Successful use of Web 2.0 in the classroom

C0010270 Working at a laptop computer

Talented teachers are in essence, modest creatures. My previous blog post entitled, “Rethinking Web 2.0 in the classroom?” included a request for teachers who were using Web 2.0 successfully in the classroom to share their experiences.  Several teachers do so already on their own blogs, but many more obviously consider their own efforts unworthy so I’ve compiled my own list below. I wanted to include specifically Web 2.0 hosted services and applications which weren’t blogs, wikis or specific free software. Interestingly enough, although teachers collaborate well with Etherpad, no-one seems to have used it with students yet. The same could be said of file storage solutions like and MediaFire.

Hopefully those teachers who want to use Web 2.0 effectively can try similar examples.  I’m hoping to compile another list of teachers’ use of open source software such as Audacity, Scratch, Gimp etc. in the near future. If anyone has already done so, please could you provide me a link?

Tom Barrett: ICT co-ordinator. Blogs at “Space for me to explore” where he writes up his experiences of using technology, both hardware and software, in the classroom.  Successful collaborations on:

 ‘100 interesting ways’ which include international contributions on using: an interactive whiteboard, Google Earth, Google Docs, a pocket video and lately – another collaboration on using Wordle. (Generates “word clouds” from text provided.) View collaboration

Tom has also used Prezi (a zooming presentation editor) in ‘Mr Barrett I have got glue on my laptop’, although not with a class specifically, this could be developed quite nicely in the classroom. The same could be said of Mark Warner’s work (Primary School teacher & ICT Coordinator) who blogs at . Example of use of Myst game in a writing task.    

Doug Belshaw:  Teacher of History and ICT, E-Learning Staff Tutor. Blogs at on a variety of elearning topics.  

Using Splashr (Creates dynamic slideshows from Flickr images) View Movie  

Using  Voicethread  (Group conversations around images, documents, and videos ) GCSE History Lesson

Jose Picardo: Head of MFL. Blogs at “BoxofTricks” and hosts a Spanish language web site at

Using Animoto. (Combines images and sound into a presentation) Examples of students’ work. Description of use.

Using Glogster. (Enables the creation of dynamic topic posters) Examples of students’ work. (Use the Search tool to read Jose’s reviews of Glogster)

Using Diigo. (A bookmarking and annotating service)Examples of annotated page here. Description of use.

Using Edmodo. (A microblogging service) Example of use.

Russel Tarr: Head of History. Successful web site

Using Wordle in History Essays.  Example of use here.

JoeDale: Head of French & Lead Practitioner for The Specialist Schools and Academies Trust: Blogs at “Integrating ICT into the MFL Classroom” His write up on Language World 09 includes ‘Show notes’ at the end, which can be explored for Web 2.0 services, as can the links to other MFL conferences.

Andy Kemp: Head of Maths: Blogs at  Although not quite student use, Andy has used Scribd which is similar to Slideshare and is useful for uploading presentations for online collaboration as others can make comments .

Using  Scribd. Example of delivery at staff meeting, ‘Why do schools need a VLE’.

(Another eg. from the USA with Slideshare. Students can comment on each other’s work.)

Danny Nicholson: Science teacher and freelance educational consultant. Blogs at “The Whiteboard Blog” where he not only covers whiteboards, but experiments with the use of Web 2.0 applications.

Please add to the comments section if you know of anyone else who should be on this list – alternatively…I’ll find you!


10 Responses

  1. Using a series of poll questions embedded into powerpoint created in to bring students into the topic, provide humor with some ridiculous response choice options, and start a discussion related to reading content. This is in a language learning class.

  2. Thanks lryeazel, I’ll have to try it with my own classes.

  3. I’ve tried some games based on using many Web 2.0 throughout the treasure-hunt type game: Flickr,, Twitter – plus email and search engines. They all involve teamwork and seem to be quite popular with my students. Basically, given a set of clues, they have to figure out keywords that in turn will uncover more clues. Results are Twittered, teams are created, and the outcomes are published via Flickr (using images relted to the outcome of the activity) and (using songs). This reinforces the network they have created with their classmates.

    There is also the Twitter discussions during the week before exams, or after a presentation. And since I’m doing research is on Personal learning environments, we are now working on building PLEs using Web 2.0 tools.

  4. Delighted to acquire more teachers to this list Ricardo! Do you blog about your use of Web 2.0 in the classroom anywhere?

  5. I need to add Alex Blagona to this list. Alex is a Language College Co-ordinator from Ipswitch. He blogs at and has examples of using slideshare with Yr 8 students doing Healthy Eating Guides.

  6. Hi, Kerry. No, I don’t blog, and maybe I should, if only just to put some order in my thoughts and help me keep track of ideas, things I learn, info, etc. But finding the time is the main issue now 😦

    What I have been doing over the past year is submitting to and attending as many conferences as possible (EDEN 08, Oxford´s Shock of the old, Learning Futures, m-ICTE). This has helped me establish a growing network of colleagues and possible some collaborations in the future, which adds to my already existing digital network 😉

  7. I’ve had some more responses via my Twitter network and discovered that teacher Steve Kirkpatrick, who blogs at has trialled Etherpad with his classes. Great news!

    James Padvis, who blogs at has a full page of Web 2.0 activities for his students.

  8. I use quicktopic,, on a regular basis. It allows me to set questions related to topics done in class. Then my ESOL students give their opinion in a close fiiendly environment, where they don’t have to worry about expressing their views (some of my students would find it difficult because of their personal situation).

    I also use animoto, bubbleshare, bliptv, flickr, wordle and other web 2 tools in my class blog and encourage my students to use those tools in their own blogs

  9. I need to add Jose Picardo’s latest blog post, where he lists several more internet tools he uses in the classroom: – and Doug Belshaw’s Inset day at #area6ict. They created a wiki listing several Web 2.0 applications for classroom use. Some excellent notes from participants. A very useful Twitter stream enabled many of us to ‘watch’ the day’s proceedings as well.

  10. An update: Some excellent work done with See Russel Tarr’s Causes of WW II and Doug Belshaw’s

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