I’ve just been playing around with a cool tool that was promoted on WOW2 chat today.  (Great show too, with Dr Cheri T. and her “students” from ETIP – Ed Tech Immersion Plus at Illinois State University).

Anyhow, back to the new cool tool – I’ve just spent a bit of time looking around VoiceThread.  This tool has so many potential avenues for use in the classroom.

Basically its a place to capture voices (I’m thinking very similar to podcasting but more collaborative and visual at the same time).  You can create a VoiceThread and capture the stories behind an image.  VoiceThread allows you to capture the voices of an entire group on a single page.

You can put your VoiceThread on any webpage or blog too!  You can even turn a photo-album into a VoiceThread.  It has links with flickr or just browse so that you can upload your images.  One thing I really liked was you could make your VoiceThread private (only friends can view it) or public – viewable without comments being able to be added or viewable with comments able to be added.

One thought of how to use this tool in the classroom that came to mind almost instantly was Oral Histories.  Imagine an old photo from your family and your Grandma or Granddad recording their thoughts and feelings or story behind the image.  Then I had another thought.  Imagine using Voicethread for those students who have the stories in their heads but find it really difficult to get their words down on paper.  Here’s a motivational way to get their stories heard.  Images could inspire very rich and relevant stories.  Feedback and comments – both written and recorded, can be given on the voicethread as well.  I particularly liked this idea and can’t wait to try out VoiceThread when my class and I begin our poetry unit in Term 3.

Watch this VoiceThread that gives you a really good idea of what VoiceThread can do.  The VoiceThread website is very clean and easy to navigate and there is a good collection of examples of how to use VoiceThread.

Then I decided to see just how easy it was to use this tool.  I spent about 5-7 minutes making this VoiceThread from start to finish and I would love you to stop by and say hi.  I’m sure we will be using this tool with our collaborative projects with classes around the world.myvoicethread.JPG

So, thanks again to the Wonderful ladies at WOW2 for yet another fantastic show (that I could finally hear and take part in the chat – now that I have my timezones sorted!!).  Thoughts to Jen W at this time and to those affected by the terrible tragedy at Virgina Tech.