Thursday, July 7, 2011

Dropbox--A Definite MUST HAVE Instructional Tool:)

DROP BOX is a free storage tool that does wonders! This tool allows you to send all the files, photos, music, etc. to a central place that can be accessed from any of your computers. You can also include it on a flash drive which will let you access it from any computer anywhere.

How can a teacher use it for the benefit of ELLs (and others)? In planning your lessons, you will probably wish to add supplemental materials to make the content more accessible to ELLs. Create your support materials and store them in your DROPBOX. Need additional websites with accompanying "beyond" materials to pull from at a moment's notice? No problem. Store them in DROPBOX.

One feature it offers was a shocker for me. You can set up DROPBOX to monitor all activity on your computer. Should your computer ever be stolen, you may be able to apprehend the thief fairly quickly. How you ask? This may sound incredible, but little would the thief know that every key s/he strikes, you will know about. There is also the option of setting up your camera to take pictures of the thief! I can not wait to set mine up to do that.

Now, what about your students? You can set up a dropbox for your classes. Students submit work to you and you store it in the dropbox. Folders can be created based on classes or projects, or both. Another possibility is to allow students to add projects/assignments directly to your dropbox (give them time to become familiar with it so that no tears are shed over lost work). Students might be encouraged to set up their own dropboxes to store work that they need for classroom research projects. Here, it might be a good idea to keep a record of their usernames and passwords for their dropboxes. Students all too often forget such minor details:)

Please note that this site offers 30 uses for DROPBOX and that list continues to grow. Experiment with it. If you are already using it, please share how you do this in your classes.

ELL Teacher Pros

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