Tricider – more than just a polling tool

I came across this very recently and only looked at it more closely after work today.

Tricider  is a very simple tool. It is easy to use, but also seems very versatile. The other good thing is that you do not need to register to use it. Teachers could easily use this with students to:

  •  take a poll
  • challenge students to brainstorm ideas for projects
  •  to create a debate/discussion on a topic
  •  or to assist when working on group projects

 All you need to do is create a question and then add some options. The next step is to share it with others, in my case students, by sending the link by email, Twitter, or Facebook. .

They can add extra options, propose solutions, provide arguments for an idea or add various pros and cons of each option. At the end they vote for the best idea. This makes the whole process of polling much more open, social and interactive.

There is a how-to video here and although the sound is not great, you can follow the directions via the screen shots.

This could also be used by staff groups to make decisions, without having to have another meeting, by proposing ideas, evaluating them and then voting for them. (without the need of being in the same room)

Note: The responses are not moderated, but it seems as though originator can delete them if required to.


Useful sites (weekly)

  • 10 Technology Enhanced Alternatives to Book Reports – The post offers alternatives to the more traditional book reports. “Writing book reports are often dreaded by students after reading a book. They can kill a book or kill a love of reading. Alternative include: creating a cartoon, creating a short video clip about the book, or advertising the book in their own way.

  • Article on 7 Jun 2011 by John Hattie (Director of the University of Melbourne’s Graduate School of Education) He was formerly a Professor of Education at Auckland University where he produced the high influential book ‘visible learning’ “Finally we need to consider alternative ways of teacher education. The current teacher training model is bankrupt and a disruptive model is needed to show a better way. Maybe it is the Melbourne MTeach model, but whatever the new model there is a need for more exciting and effective ways to educate teachers across their teaching life. After school sessions, warm tea, and cold seats are a poor basis for learning. Perhaps those claiming to be involved are funded only if they can show, with the teachers, that they have demonstrable gains on the students’ learning from the professional development provided. John Hattie is the Director of the University of Melbourne’s Graduate School of Education he was formerly a Professor of Education at Auckland University where he produced the high influential book ‘visible learning’.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Useful sites (weekly)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

The state of education or the perils of watching daytime television

Again, being home I have time to watch some tv. I put on ABC24 the news station and found…our parliament in full flight. It was very difficult to hear the politicians talk about the great things they have been doing for education; the National Curriculum tht still has not been agreed to by all the states, the website set up for parents to get a better understanding of schools and their child’s progress (statistics that can show many things and nothing) and how good the introduction of national testing is. They are such experts on education I don’t know why we need teachers at all!

I have ranted about this before and I have not changed my attitude to this so I got so annoyed, listening to the glib  statements and the smirks of the politicians, that I put on a commercial station only to hear an labour election advertisement with our Premier talking about how well he understood teaching, after all he had been one in another life, and what is government has been doing for schools and students. Time to switch off the television I thought. This is not making feel better or rested.

I watched the video below that seems to put things into perspective.

Useful sites (weekly)

The Collaboration Cycle by superkimbo in BKK The image is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Useful sites (weekly)

From Flickr Uploaded 2009-10-26 by vicky_n

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

TitanPad – real-time collaboraton


Recently I was discussing how to actively involve people in conference workshops. I was at one session at the ACEC conference where the presenter had all those present join an on-line space to share information about their experiences with technology in the classroom.

EtherPad was the name of a tool my colleague came up with and I know a few people who were advocates of the real-time document collaboration platform EtherPad. EtherPad itself no longer exists (after it bought and shut down by Google) but, as is often the case, some similar services have popped-up. One that has been brought to my attention via the RedFerret blog is TitanPad.

TitanPad will provide a free platform for real-time document collaboration. It seems to be very similar to the original EtherPad with anyone using TitanPad able to instantly create a collaborative document. You do not have to create an account to use TitanPad, in fact creating an account isn’t offered as an option.

Getting started:

  1. Click on “create public pad,” (a window will appear with a document space) 
  2. enter your name and
  3. start typing.

You can then invite your colleagues/students to collaborate by just sharing the unique URL, assigned to the TitanPad space you have created, with them using email, instant messaging services.

Note: Make sure that everyone understands that the only way  to keep any open TitanPads private is to safeguard their URL and it is for this reason private information should not be shared.

Every collaborator on TitanPad is given their own (unique) color to highlight the text they’ve added and can even be given a label or name. It also allows for each line entered by a collaborator  to have a different number for easier reference.  When anyone adds or edits something in the document, the changes are instantly reflected on everyone’s screen. There is also a chat option so you can give comments or advice to any of the group members.

At the end of the session the work can be saved and exported as an HTML, plain text, bookmarked file, Microsoft Word, PDF, or OpenDocument format. You can go back to the work as it allows different revisions to be documented and a time slider is provided to show when such revisions are made. 

Applications for schools, classrooms and workshops

As accounts aren’t necessary so you don’t lose any classroom or meeting time getting colleagues or students online through a long registration process.

TitanPad could be quickly created for hosting and recording any online brainstorming session with students, collaborating as a group in project-based learning, to keeping a teacher aware of group progress and to allow for communication beyond school times and walls. It might also be a good platform for interviewing experts on a topic.

Teachers could use it to collaborate in curriculum planning, working on text documents, keeping meeting notes, and drafting plans.

I think that this would also work for some of the hands-on workshops at some of our SLAV conferences and branch meetings. What an easy way to share our experiences!