Favorites of 2014

Seems like the start of a new year makes people reflect. So I have decided to reflect on my favorite new ed tech products of 2014. These were my favorite products to debut in 2014.

Canva is one of my all time favorite tools. Canva is an easy to use graphic design program. It has a simple drag and drop interface. You can use one of Canva's premade templates or create your own from scratch. Premade templates include Twitter and email headers, presentations, posters, invitations, Pinterest posts, photo collages and more. You can use one of the thousands of free graphics Canva has, upload your own or buy one of Canva's graphics for $1.00. I have used Canva for absolutely everything this year! Any time I need a graphic for anything, I use Canva. The header for this blog was created in Canva. You can see other things I have made by visiting my Canva profile. Canva even has a great iOS app that functions just like the web app. Canva has a design school where you can lean how to use Canva and get great design tips at the same time.

Google Classroom was released in August of 2014 and was the answer to many teachers' prayers. Google Classroom is a file management system that makes sharing files with students a breeze. No longer do teachers have to collect student email addresses, create mailing groups, share handout folders, collect handin folders and search for shared documents. Google Classroom does that and much more. Google Classroom is so simple to set up. Students add themselves to your classroom and the teacher can control everything. Google Classroom is not just for collecting Google assignments. Use it to collect any assignment from Office to web created files. The best comment I heard from a student was "I wished all my teachers used Google Classroom so I wouldn't have to lose any more papers."

Kahoot was actually released in 2013 but 2014 was truly the year of Kahoot. Kahoot is a games based student response system. Students use any web enabled device to answer a series of questions. Fastest fingers matter in Kahoot as the faster the correct answer is entered, the more points that is scored. I have used Kahoot with all age groups of people from adults to elementary students. Every age group loves this tool! Kahoot can make a boring review session exciting. You can create your own quizzes in Kahoot or use one of the 984,000 public Kahoots that have been shared by other Kahoot users.

2014 saw the debut of lots of ed tech tools. As we know with anything on the web, what is here today may not be here tomorrow. I think these three tools have staying power. And best of all, all three are FREE! What was your favorite ed tech tool of 2014?


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