In her paper *Open Young Hearts and Minds* Machado (2014) describes how teachers can use VoiceThreads to create hybrid border spaces that support learning. Please explore the VoiceThread page on Dr. Machado’s PLN which is available here: https://cmachadolearns.wordpress.com/teaching/21st-century-teaching-tools/voicethread/

Visit the VoiceThread website and identify 2-3 really good VoiceThread examples for the grade level you currently teach/hope to teach. Include links to these in a thoughtful post and explain why you thought they were great examples. Describe 3 different approaches to using VoiceThread in your classroom.

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This application is very interesting and I would be open to using it in the classroom. In my first example it is easy to see how the kids could get off task. One student took the time after answering the question to draw a silly picture. This could be prevented with the teaching of appropriate behavior on the website. I like the fact that students can either type or write and draw to explain their work. This is something that students cannot always do when just doing paper and pencil work. VoiceThread could be something that as a teacher if you were absent you could have the students work on, or if the student would be absent. There are positives and negatives for using any application in the classroom. I would use this application though because it gives you a more personal connection with what you are doing and gives you a chance to connect with others in your class.

Exploring the website I found a few different examples in which I could use the same information in my classroom. The first is a Math application problem that students are to use the number of free throws the teacher can make in 3 hours. Many of the students use the same proportional ratios to find the answer but with this application it is nice to hear the students’ explanations and see what work they are doing, digitally, while they are doing the work. http://voicethread.com/about/library/7th_graders_practice_Math_in_Action_from_Ms_Redd/

This second video I chose deals with probability. I like that the teacher has the picture of the pool balls and asks what the probability of finding a certain color, number or ratio of the balls. I could see myself using this with my students in the class room. http://voicethread.com/about/library/7th_Grade__Exploring_Probability_from_Britt_Gow/

The third video I chose was created for English. This allowed the students to describe connotations of a picture. The teacher was also looking at the emotion in the picture and when they students gave their answers you were able to hear their tone in what they were describing. http://voicethread.com/about/library/connotations/

http://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/560136/2993428/11165721

This voice thread is about Lois Lowry’s novel, The Giver, which is a very popular read amongst seventh graders. The author of this voice thread outlines several events that have taken place throughout the novel so far, such as Jonas’ first experience with the color red. She then goes on to ask the students to think critically about the symbols Lowry uses in her text. I think this voice thread would be a great tool to incorporate in my own English/Language Arts classroom if we were to read The Giver. Not only could I have the students view this thread and answer questions about it, but I could also let them create their own voice thread regarding another section of the book.

http://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/2332159/12356468/14439151

This voice thread explains the use of alliteration within poetry. The author of this voice thread defines alliteration and gives several different examples of what alliteration is and what it is NOT. I would utilize this voice thread in my classroom when beginning a lesson on alliteration within poetry; I could use this voice thread as an introductory activity with my students. After watching and listening to this voice thread, I could answer any questions that my students have and then have them write their own poem using alliteration. I think this would make the lesson more interactive and more exciting than standing in front of my class sand explaining alliteration in a lecture style.

There are many uses for voice thread in the classroom. First, I could use this technology to introduce a new idea or concept to my students; for example, alliteration in poetry. I think this would be a good way to get students engaged in a new topic. I could also use this technology to reiterate an idea, such as I mentioned with Lowry’s The Giver. Students could use the voice thread as a review and then even make their own voice thread at a later time. Finally, I could use voice thread in a project-based manner. For example, after completing a topic, such as similes and metaphors, or a novel, such as Holes, I could have my students create their own voice threads and present them to a partner or to the whole class. Voice thread would be a useful tool throughout the ages and grades within middle school; I think younger students, such as fourth and fifth graders could use this technology with some guidance, but I believe seventh and eighth graders would enjoy using this technology independently.

1. Cookie Division voice thread

2. Black Bat, Black Bat what do you see?

3. Sight words

Three different approaches to this in the classroom could be having the students and teachers watching the threads at home for homework. This can be beneficial because the kids will be learning as well as the parents. Sometimes parents do not know how to help their children at home, but with videos it gives them a learning experience as well. A second approach would be to have the students engage in a voice thread as a class, during class. This could be used a lesson plan. Finally, this can be done individually in a class setting. Again, this can be used as a lesson plan.

https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/646381/3417988/3793572

https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/7244012/38690024/40018684

https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/309636/1641719

I have never heard of VoiceThread until now, but I think this could be an extremely useful technology to use in the classroom for students and teachers. There are several approaches that could be used when teaching/learning with VoiceThread. The way I would use this in my classroom would be for homework assignments, in-class activities, group work, teacher-to-teacher collaboration, explanations/lectures when there is a substitute, etc. There are endless opportunities in the classroom to use this site. For example, in a math classroom, I could have my students use VoiceThread to write out a problem, solve it, and explain their thinking while they are in the process of solving. This will help me, as the teacher, to understand what they are thinking as well as help other students in the classroom who are struggling with the concept. If I didn’t explain the material in a way that some students understand, other students in the class may be able to get across to them better. Just by using this for solving one math problem, it hits on all of the four C’s, which is extremely important. It also touches on numerous learning styles as well.

I hope to be teaching math to seventh and eighth graders in the near future. Based on my grade level, I found a couple VoiceThreads that I thought would be valuable to both my future students and myself.

The first one I found is called Algebra and Geometry tutorial. (The link is https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/980755/8358945/9962386) I thought this was a great example of students sharing a homework problem and explaining their thoughts as they are going through the problem. As I mentioned before, some students learn best from their peers and this is a perfect way to incorporate that in the classroom. Also, with math there are several ways to solve one single problem and this is a good way for students to see which way works best for them. Another great thing about this is when students are explaining their solution process aloud, they are actually thinking about what they are doing rather than guessing/flying through the problem without thinking about what is actually happening.

The second VoiceThread I found that I thought would be beneficial to me as a future educator is called Similar Triangles Problems. (The link is https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/384690/2029457/2190530) This VoiceThread is actually a teacher explaining different problems dealing with similar triangles. This is another way that I would use this technology in my own classroom in order to reassure that the students understood the concepts taught in class that day/week. I wouldn’t necessarily use this approach to teach the material in the classroom because it would get boring for the students, but I would use something like this as a resource for them to use when they are outside of the classroom. Also, parents would be able to see it and understand what exactly their child is learning and how it is being taught. This could be extremely helpful for parents who are trying to help their children with homework at home when the student leaves school.

There are so many different ways I could use this website in the future. Whether I create VoiceThreads for my students to use or my students create them to submit homework assignments, classwork, or even projects, it is an interactive and enjoyable way to get all students involved in their own learning.

The Great Depression: Poetry for Two (http://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/425796/2574380/3023800)

Dear Soldier

(https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/1275051/6848492)

Tessellations

(https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/228710/1189519/1308647)

These were great examples in my opinion because as a middle level educator, I will be able to teach any subject from 4-6th grade, so I focused on examples from three different subjects within this grade range. The Great Depression was good because it would help students to better understand the Great Depression and it gives a great example for a potential activity for me to use in my future class. Dear Soldier was touching because it used poetry to thank soldiers that have given great sacrifices for us, which I think would be important for students to learn. Tessellations would be a good one to help teach a tessellation lesson to 6th grade.

There are many approaches that could be used for Voicethread in a classroom. I think it would be a great project for the students to create their own voicethread to present to the class for a grade. Also, I think it would be great for students to browse public voicethreads to learn about a topic. Another way I would like to use voicethread is to create my own as a teacher so that students can log on and have their parents watch them also so they can learn what their students learned in class so they can better help the student if they need it.

https://voicethread.com/myvoice/#thread/119840/618868/937665

This voicethread was created to showcase students’ interpretations of weather poetry using picturing writing technique. I really love this voicethread because every student was able to present a visual representation of what he/ she understood of the poem, and you can clearly hear the intonation and stress in the voice recordings. When the works of students are presented to an authentic audience and they receive positive feedback, just imagine the kids smiling from ear to ear! Creativity and Creation is clearly promoted in this activity.

To teach Literature, I would do a voicethread like this. I will give students a theme for their poems such as Love and get students to look for a poem that fits the theme. Each student will look for a poem and a picture to visually represent the poem (to be put in each slide), then, record his/ her voice to be uploaded on voicethread. I could also come up with a voicethread to teach figurative language. For example, a slide could have the word “simile” and the explanation. Students can then add their own similes via sound recording.

I also like this voicethread, http://voicethread.com/#thread/462/3629/1614. It shows pictures from across the globe. I would like to take a leaf from https://iearn.org/, a website recommended by IREX. An idea on the website has students from across the globe sharing pictures of the food they eat. On a smaller scale in Malaysia, I could have my students snap a picture of the food they have for breakfast and explain what goes into it. On a broader scale, I could collaborate with my ILEP fellows and have our students do this project together. It will promote a better understanding of their peers in different countries.

I missed out one more Voicethread. http://voicethread.com/#thread/1192/16708/7833. This Voicethread deals with the all important topic of Global Warming. This Voicethread could have better audio and visual quality but considering it was done by a child, assisted by her mother, it deserves to be commended upon. In my opinion, it is a good Voicethread to be used as an example for my students because it sends the message that somebody their age is capable of doing a Voicethread and they can too. I could put my students in groups and ask them to come up with a Voicethread on the different types of pollution, the effects and possible solutions.