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appoLearning Collections: a new tool for curating apps and resources
I had breakfast with a colleague from the Graduate School of Education yesterday and our conversation kept returning to how can classroom teachers possibly keep up with what looks like an educational app explosion? How can they carve out the time it takes to effectively integrate apps and other new resources into instruction? How can they find the time to discover and select the very best apps and tools? And how can they organize and remember what they discover and share it with their learning communities?
IMHO, this is a problem that cries out for a library solution. It’s all about translating and demonstrating our selection and collection development chops for digital landscapes.
We can take charge of these responsibilities within our schools and we can guide our interested and harried classroom teacher partners in strategies for doing it on their own. My favorite app/resource selection/collection tools have been edshelf and Common Sense Media’s Graphite, with its Lesson Flows and Boards.
Recently appoLearning introduced another free strategy for curating and sharing apps.
appoLearning Collections leverage the carefully selected, standards-aligned resources already available from the appoLearning search engine for which thousands of resources have been vetted and reviewed by a team of practicing expert educators.
By creating Collections, educators curate, annotate and share the specific resources they need for grade levels, classes, departments, or specific lessons or projects. Apps and resources may be visited or played directly from your Collections. Collection builders may choose to point to materials already in the database or add their own new links and upload their own resources.
Resources might include apps, YouTube or Vimeo videos, websites, presentations, PDFs, images, Google Drive links, and Dropbox files. Each appears with appropriate identifying logos and may be arranged in any desired order.
Search for resources to build your collections by keyword or subject. Filter your search by subject, paid/free and device/platform of choice, tag and Common Core Standard.
You may simply choose to browse and be inspired by the growing number of collections created by others. If you find useful resources on another collection, it’s super easy to grab that resource and add it to one of your own. Click Add to add any resource to your own Collection. Click Add All to continue to build on an already-built Collection. Click View to return to your collection.
Searches reveal resources described by their appoLearning Report Cards, reviews based on a proprietary rubric predicated on multiple criteria including Educational Content and Function, Features and Production Value, and Engagement.
Collections are assigned unique URLs that may be shared via email or social media. An embed feature allows you easily to include Collection on existing sites.
About Joyce Valenza
Joyce is an Assistant Professor of Teaching at Rutgers University School of Information and Communication, a technology writer, speaker, blogger and learner. Follow her on Twitter: @joycevalenza
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