I realized that in my last post I reference an online tool without telling what it did, which is ironic because my first ideas for starting this blog were to provide useful online tools for educators to use in their classrooms.
Voicethread is a simple tool that has lots of possibilities. You start out by uploading an image file (map, picture, artwork, scanned document, etc.) Then you can draw on it, record a voice comment, or add a text comment to that picture. You can then add other pictures and make a sort of slide show with your narration if you'd like. So what makes this any better than a lecture or Power Point? Well, it's a sharable, online and collaborative. You can set up a Voicethread to allow it to be viewed publicly and even to have other people comment (text or audio) on the pictures. They can even add to the "thread" if you allow them too. You can get notified of changes to the thread through email or RSS if you'd like. You can even embed them into other sites or applications when you are done.
I don't want to sound like an advertisement here, because I stand to gain nothing financially from Voicethread (not that I wouldn't turn down an offer if there's anyone from Voicethread reading) but Voicethread is offering FREE PRO ACCOUNTS to educators. This allows you more flexibility and functionality. I just feel that any company with a good tool who is reaching out to provide to the world of education needs to be justly recognized for that contribution. I hope that people will embrace this opportunity and give Voicethread some feedback to help strengthen this relationship.