Friday, December 10, 2010

The 12 days of Techmas - Day 1: Symbaloo

Over the course of the next 12 days I will be sharing 12 different websites/services that are handy for the classroom. I know there are still 15 days until Christmas, but I'm sure no one will be reading this blog in the 3 days leading up to the big day.

Today's website is called Symbaloo. Symbaloo is a site where you can store your bookmarks visually. After creating an account, you can customize your webmixes (fancy word for bookmark) with little icons that represent your pages. When adding new bookmarks, you have the option of searching through their database for bookmarks created by other users, potentially saving you some time. If you cannot find what you're looking for or want a more specific page, you can create your own. You simply need to plug in the URL and upload an icon for your bookmark (you can choose from some clipart alternately).

You can also customize the number of webmixes on display and move them around. One tip is to group webmixes into content or subject areas (see picture below), a handy way to organize your work.

Not only would this be a great place for you to organize your bookmarks, students could create their own accounts as well. They could even use Symbaloo as a method for keeping track of their sources when finding information. One quick click and they're back to the page they used before.

If you're really keen, for a small fee you can get a custom URL. This would mean that students in your classes could simply go to your Symbaloo page for all of the weblinks they need. Doing this may be of benefit for young students and students that are just acquiring English, as it would eliminate the need for reading and typing.

TOMORROW: Livebinder - Who needs USB sticks anymore?

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