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July 31, 2014

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Richard Byrne

About Richard Byrne

Richard Byrne (richardbyrne@freetech4teachers.com) writes the award-winning blog “Free Technology for Teachers.”

Eight Apps to Support Early Reading and Writing | Cool Tools

Eight Apps to Support Early Reading and Writing | Cool Tools

It’s never too early to encourage reading. Richard Byrne shares his picks for tools that young readers and writers can use with or without an adult. Includes screencasts demoing three applications: Building Language for Literacy, Reading Bear, and Maily, an iOS app for letter writing.

This article was published in School Library Journal's July 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Pleased to Meet You: Web apps for getting to know your students before fall

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School’s out. But before we know it, we’ll be thinking about next year. To jazz up your blog and revitalize your summertime communication with parents and students, check out these fine tools.

This article was published in School Library Journal's June 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Apps for Outdoor Learning | Cool Tools

Apps for Outdoor Learning | Cool Tools

With spring in the air, students typically clamor to get outside—and teachers would often like to follow. April is an ideal time of year to explore outdoor learning opportunities, and these apps and sites can lead the way.

This article was published in School Library Journal's April 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Cool Ways to Use Google to Inspire Your Students to Create Dynamic Worlds

Cool Ways to Use Google to Inspire Your Students to Create Dynamic Worlds

Here are some practical applications of how teachers and librarians can use Google’s Maps and Street View to create lesson plans and assignments on virtual tours of the streets of Paris, or map out some Civil War battles.

This article was published in School Library Journal's March 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Cool Tools for Featuring Student Book Reviews

Cool Tools for Featuring Student Book Reviews

There’s nothing like a book recommendation from a friend. Encourage students to share their opinions by creating a student-driven book review site. Richard Byrne shows you how in the accompanying screencasts.

This article was published in School Library Journal's January 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Animation Made Easy: The best tools for student projects, from stop motion to GIFs

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With accessible tools, you and your students can create your own simple animations to convey powerful ideas. Screencast tutorials will have you up and running with the latest “Cool Tools” from Richard Byrne, SLJ columnist and blogger at “Free Technology for Teachers.”

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Resources for Curating Video Collections and Creating Custom Courses

Resources for Curating Video Collections and Creating Custom Courses

A good video can be a powerful way to help students understand new concepts. The challenge isn’t locating quality instructional clips—but rather organizing your selections. Making playlists in YouTube is one strategy, but there are better options. Try these tools for organizing and creating video courses.

This article was published in School Library Journal's November 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Teach Kids how to Code, Make Apps and 3-D Models With These Tools

Teach Kids how to Code, Make Apps, and Try 3-D Printing With These Tools

The best applications for teaching basic programming skills—no geek cred required to use them successfully in your classroom or library. Other apps enable kids to build 3-D models, which they can print, too.

This article was published in School Library Journal's October 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

From Scavenger Hunts to Photo Sharing, Fun Apps to Calm the Back-to-School Jitters

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Early in the school year is a good time to help kids get into the swing of things and get to know one another and these apps can help.

This article was published in School Library Journal's September 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Summer Project? Six Tools to Upgrade Your School Website

Summer Project? Six Tools to Upgrade Your School Website

School’s out—and time to enjoy some serious lounging. Summer is also a time to consider your Web presence. If your website could use an upgrade, consider these tools to give it a boost for back-to-school—and save you time this fall.

Blogging for Reluctant Writers: Have students share their ideas using sound and video

Blogging for Reluctant Writers: Have students share their ideas using sound and video

Here Richard Byrne covers sound and video applications that enable students to blog—without writing, from SoundCloud and Animoto to a new audio slideshow tool called Narrable.

The Best PowerPoint Alternatives for Creating Great Presentations

The Best PowerPoint Alternatives for Creating Great Presentations

We’ve all endured “death by PowerPoint.” It’s a painful experience for the audience and probably not all that fun for the presenter either. To help students deliver effective presentations—free of those deadly bullet points—SLJ columnist Richard Byrne cites his go-to applications.

Getting Kids Engaged with Primary Sources | Cool Tools

Getting Kids Engaged with Primary Sources | Cool Tools

Primary resources can help bring history to life for students. Make the most of first-hand accounts and other primary source content with tools such as the National Archives’ Digital Vaults, video tour included.

Top Tools for Upgrading Your Resume | Cool Tools

Top Tools for Upgrading Your Résumé | Cool Tools

It’s spring, a time when students start looking for summer jobs or internships—and that requires some attention to their resumes and portfolios. In this month’s “Cool Tools,” Richard Byrne taps the best applications for creating an online showcase of your best work.

Alternative Search Tools: These options to Google will help students become better researchers

Alternative Search Tools: These options to Google will help students become better researchers

Cool Tools columnist Richard Byrne presents some free options for research that don’t require a login, along with a few quick tips to aid student searches.

Planning Common Core Lessons?: Free, Web-based applications can help align your plans with the new standards

Planning Common Core Lessons?: Free, Web-based applications can help align your plans with the new standards

Ready or not, here they come. At almost every school I visited this year, teachers asked me to address the Common Core (CC) standard in my workshops. Planning lessons with CC in mind presents a challenge, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. These sites are designed with the express purpose of helping plan lessons around Common Core.

Mobile Apps Make Student Assessment Easy and Interactive | Cool Tools

Mobile Apps Make Student Assessment Easy and Interactive | Cool Tools

Regardless of what curriculum areas we teach, observing and assessing our students is something that we all do every day. Thanks to mobile devices like iPads and Android tablets, recording our informal observations and formal assessments has never been easier.

Free Web Tools Make Classroom Management Fun

Free Web Tools Make Classroom Management Fun

Web applications that make it easy to create records in appealing formats for sharing, selected by Richard Byrne, School Library Journal’s Cool Tools columnist.

Cool Tools: The Best Free Web Applications for Reaching Out to Parents

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From maintaining a blog to texting updates from the classroom, free web apps can help educators foster those important school-home connections.

Making the Most of Video in the Classroom | Cool Tools

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From Vialogues and SynchTube to TED-Ed, free tools for hosting conversation around videos.