Top 100 Sites of 2011
11/23/2011 12:00:00 AM
The time is finally here for my annual list of favorite sites of the year. This year, I decided to up my post to the top 100 instead of 25 due to the number of sites that I reviewed and due to the popularity of the post. I tried to cover a wide range of sites, from flash card creators to digital storytelling and of course, social networks, which really shined in 2011. I hope everybody enjoys the read and has as much fun reading it as I did creating it!
- Conduit Mobile - Without a doubt the coolest, most innovative site I came across this year. This is ideal for bloggers, web designers, or schools in a one-to-one environment who are looking to create a great-looking mobile app for free or share news/homework in a mobile environment.
- Gnowledge - One of the best collaborative quiz/test creation sites around. This excellent-looking site should be a mainstay for years to come.
- Google+ - A great social network and alternative to Facebook. Google+ really shines with its control and visually stunning video chat (hangouts) features.
- Watch Know - An excellent place to find free educational videos for students. This is a very easy site to navigate as everything is categorized by subject and rated for age appropriate levels.
- Muvee Cloud - Redesign of the popular video/presentation site Shwup. This site is very easy to use and has a nice polished look and great for creating projects with photos and videos. Best of all, Muvee Cloud is free for educators and students.
- Study Blue - A great site for making flashcards and notes. Also, with its newly designed mobile app it makes studying a treat, with the ability to study anywhere or anytime.
- YouTube Teachers - Wonderful site designed to help teachers use educational videos in the classroom.
- Primary Wall - Similar to Wall Wisher with an educational portal. A paid account filters those "walls" (interactive bulletin boards) which are very easy to create. Also, there are lots of free educational resources to be found for lesson plans and ideas.
- Skype in the Classroom - Designed for education, this site brings teachers, projects and resources together from all around the world. This is a free site designed for video conferencing and global learning.
- TXTNLRN - Very innovative site that teaches through the use of text messaging. All enrollment is done via a text message and great for those wanting to learn at their own pace and try something new.
- Webspiration Classroom - A wonderful site by the creators of Inspiration, designed for grades 5 thru 12. An ideal site for collaborating, brainstorming, and creating outlines with a web 2.0 interface.
- PikiFriends - This is a great site for online pen pals to teach web 2.0 skills to students in a safe filtered environment. Teachers have lots of control over student accounts and an abundance of resources to show how to implement PikiFriends into their curriculum.
- Boom Writer - A unique site for students to collaboratively write online in a safe environment.
- Sophia - A new (beta) social network for education. Lots of great features can be found here, including free lesson plans, private group (study) creation, and online tutoring.
- Planbook EDU - A great site/app for creating lesson plans on the web. More features are available with a paid account, such as attaching files and embedding into a site.
- Little Bird Tales - A site that has been getting quite a bit of press lately for digital storytelling. This is a great site for elementary students looking to create a story, add their art work, and even record their voice.
- Sound Cloud - An innovative site for creating, recording, and sharing audio/sounds for free. This is an ideal way to share, embed, and document lessons and lectures.
- Springo Kids - A fun visual search engine for kids where results are given in thumbnails.
- SliderRocket EDU - A great site to creating stunning presentations for schools.
- GameUp - A fun site from the creators of Brain Pop for educational games. These games are focused on Brain Pop's highly popular animated lessons.
- APPitic - A terrific site for finding educational apps. There are over 1300 apps reviewed by Apple Distinguished Educators.
- Useful Charts - A wonderful collection of charts on any number of subjects.
- Much Enough - An excellent site for educators to teach any subject online (webcam) and charge what they want.
- iCharts - A great site for creating an online interactive chart, either from scratch or a spreadsheet.
- Tabblo - Nice site for digital storytelling created by HP. The finished project can be shared with others or viewed in a slideshow.
- Study Ladder - One of the fastest-growing sites around, with lots of educational resources such as games, worksheets, and lesson plans.
- Story Something - A fun and great interactive storytelling site for kids. This is a great place for kids to read along with stories and interact with them.
- NBC Learn - An interesting site aligned to state standards for implementing K-12 resources, such as historic videos and current events.
- Class Parrot - A safe way for teachers to text students with the option to add parents as well.
- Study Stream - Wonderful site for learning a foreign language with the use of videos, articles, and blogs.
- Paper Rater - Free site that checks for grammar, spelling, proof reading, and plagiarism.
- WebSlides - Site powered by Diigo that turns bookmarks into a interactive slideshow.
- Kideos - A great site to find safe videos for kids that are organized by age level and abide by COPPA compliance.
- WhoTeaches - A new (beta) network designed to bring students, parents, and educators together. This is done through collaboration with the ability to share documents and create groups. Also, this site offers high level education for online learners looking for tutors or to study.
- Weaving History - New site that is great for making timelines based on history.
- Lesson Writer - Nice site for teachers to create a lesson and save them online.
- ProProfs - A great "all in one" site for education that allows users to create quizzes, flashcards, polls, etc.
- Slime Kids - Fun site that has lots to offer elementary students such as: book reviews, games, trailers, etc.
- Quicklyst - A cool site for taking notes and studying on a mobile device.
- Embed Plus - An innovative way to edit YouTube videos. It's like having DVD controls right at your finger tips.
- Better Lesson - Free social network, ideal for educators. 1000s of resources can be found here as well as collaborating with other educators to find out what teaching strategies work best.
- Knovio - Great site for making slideshows by syncing audio to a powerpoint. This is ideal for those that like to create Pecha Kucha presentations.
- Word Hippo - An excellent online dictionary and translator as well.
- Concept Board - An ideal site for creating an interactive whiteboard with many features, such as screen capture, mobility, etc.
- Mind Leap- A great site for finding and reviewing educational apps on a five-star system for grades PreK - MS.
- Big Marker - A free web conferencing community that is ideal for educators and students. This is a great place to create a private room for collaboration and document sharing.
- PikiKids - A fun site for creating online digital comics.
- Quizilla - A terrific site for kids ages 13 and up for creating and sharing quizzes, stories, poems, and polls.
- Study Shuffle - A wonderful site for creating flashcards that allows for student tracking.
- Diipo - A wonderful new (beta) social network that is similar to Moodle and Gaggle. This network prides itself on being social networking for "your" class. This allows for teachers and students to not only collaborate with themselves online through texting and blogging, but also collaborate with others.
- Tutor Hub - A community where students can find an online tutor who sets his or her own rates.
- Frabroom - A free online museum with lots of nice features, such as interactive books and games.
- Jellycam - A free download for a Mac or PC for making stop motion animation.
- Study Stack - Excellent site for creating flashcards and studying with educational games. Study Stack has a nice mobile app as well.
- aMap - An interesting site for creating a visual debate and then embedding into a site.
- Everloop - An excellent social network that is designed to teach students how to network appropriately. Also, this site is ideal for education as it is being monitored by parents and supported by such organizations such as iSafe.
- PhotoShow - Create stunning slideshows with this very easy-to-use site.
- We Video - A great site for creating collaborative videos.
- LearnBoost - An excellent free online gradebook that is similar to Powerschool. Not only can a teacher do grades online, but there is student tracking, Google Apps integration, lesson plan creation, and more.
- Class Dojo - Bring old-school verbal feedback to the 21st Century with this nice online behavior management system.
- 19 Pencils - An ideal site for creating quizzes and websites with student tracking.
- Popplet - A graphic organizer that is great for brainstorming, creating mindmaps, outlines, etc.
- Study Boost - A great way to study with others using a mobile device.
- VuSafe - This site is a wonderful way to show pre-approved videos in a safe environment. Also, this site works well on mobile devices and is CIPA compliant.
- Huffduffer - A great site for creating podcasts from audio links from around the web.
- Yaca Paca - An interesting site that is free for students and teachers. This is ideal for online assessments and allows teachers to create quizzes, surveys, and more.
- Slidestaxx - An excellent site for creating beautiful social media slideshows.
- Fresh Brain - This is a neat site for educators and students for creating technology projects, such as a game or YouTube video.
- Watch2gether - Great way to watch YouTube videos with others via a text chat.
- iGrade Plus - A nice online gradebook with lots of features such as: attendance, grade management, parent notifications, etc. Also, there are different price options depending on what features best suits your needs.
- Desmos - A cool new site for creating interactive lessons for education.
- K12 Advantage - Wonderful site for educational resources, built around a social network for collaborating and sharing.
- Story Time for Me - Excellent site for grade K-2 where interactive stories are read to kids by professional actors.
- Webdoc - A cool new (beta) site for creating multimedia type blog posts with comments.
- Fauxflash - A great site for creating flash cards and studying. Also, there are lots of different study decks to browse through on a number of different subjects.
- Study Egg - An innovative site for helping students learn a given subject.
- edWeb - A wonderful social network where educators can browse through webinars they may want to attend.
- Learn 360 - A site that is a cheaper alternative to Discovery Streaming. Learn 360 is ideal for streaming/downloading videos, creating digital content and more.
- FunnelBrain - Great site for creating flashcards and quizzes and joining teams for studying.
- ASCD Edge - An educational social network with over 25,000 members. Members can create their own blog and share news via real-time newsfeed.
- Memidex - Excellent free online dictionary/thesaurus. Find out the origin of words and other interesting facts.
- Tiki-Toki - Wonderful new web app for creating stunning-looking timelines.
- CK-12 - A great site for free digital textbooks that are aligned to state standards.
- PodOmatic - An excellent site for creating podcasts and adding audio via iTunes.
- Schoology - Content management system similar to Moople or Moodle. While this is a free site, a paid subscription gets users more features.
- Fish Smarty - A terrific new site for online learning through games, digital comics, and coloring. Also, there is an educational portal that's ideal for student tracking.
- Plagiarisma - Great site to check to see if an item/document is being plagiarized.
- TeachAde - Social network designed for educators to share educational resources.
- Time Search - Innovative site for searching for events on a timeline. Great for history teachers/students looking for events of a specific time.
- Grockit Answers - Cool new (beta) site for interacting with educational YouTube videos. This is done by creating a public or private question/answer session around a video.
- Projeqt - A very user-friendly site that is great for creating nice visual presentations.
- Present.me - This is a wonderful site for uploading a Powerpoint presentation and then adding a narration. The finished product is quite nice, as it shows both the narrator and presentation in a side by side window.
- Moople - A nice site that is designed to help educators and students with online learning. Users of Moodle or Blackboard should have a nice feel for what this site is all about.
- Scrumblr - Create a fun interactive board with online sticky notes.
- Smore - Smore is a site that reminds me a lot of Glogster for creating interactive posters/flyers.
- ThumbScribes - A new (beta) site for creating collaborative digital stories on a number of different things, such as poems, stories, songs, etc. Once a piece has been created it can then be voted on by other members.
- Draw Island - One of the better digital art sites to come around. Draw Island allows a user to create a custom drawing and then even animate it.
- Dweeber - This is a social network designed for students looking to collaborate on homework.
- Catch - One of my favorite new sites to come around for taking notes is Catch. Catch allows a user to capture anything on a site, such as text, audio or photos, and share with others. Ideal for those with mobile devices.
- Ptable - Wonderful interactive periodic table. This tables displays all the elements and links them to Wikipedia, which makes it handy for studying.
David Kapuler is an educational consultant with more than 10 years of experience working in the K-12 environment. For more information about his work, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and read his blog at cyber-kap.blogspot.com
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