Educational technology tips for teachers, librarians and schools.
2016 Teacher Tools

2016 Teacher Tools: Dotstorming

2016 Teacher Tools: Dotstorming

By Julie Smith

2016 is the year you become a tech-savvy teacher and Julie Smith, a K-5 teacher in Virginia, is going to help you do exactly that. All teacher tools in the series were chosen by this techie teacher, and she’ll give you the quick run down on a different tech tool every month. 

What Is It: Dotstorming is a free real-time, group-sharing, brainstorming and decision-making web tool that can easily be used in every classroom. I’ve used Dotstorming with several classes this year and received a lot of great feedback from both the teachers and students.

How I Use It: As an easy way for students to share their work with one another.

The Bottom Line: Very easy, yet very effective.

The Rundown

Dotstorming is similar to Padlet and Realtime Board in that the teacher creates a board/wall that produces a web address for students to click on or type in for easy access. Users can add “post its” with their thoughts or ideas as well as upload images. I love to use virtual collaboration boards like Dotstorming for students to share their work with one another.

Dotstorming allows users to view and comment on each other’s posts. Students LOVE to read the feedback from their peers:

feedback from peers

Users can also place votes on their favorite idea or image by clicking the “dot” under the post. The post that has the most dots is the most popular:

place votes

When you create a board, you get to indicate how many votes each user is allotted. I like to give students at least two votes to use. The voting feature in Dotstorming is a wonderful way for classes to make decisions fairly while working together on a common goal. I love that.

Another great feature of Dotstorming is the chat room. This is helpful for students working together, as they add ideas and upload images to a shared board. They can communicate with each other without leaving comments on the individual posts.

Dotstorming does not provide an embed code like Padlet does; however, it’s still a great tool for students to share work, communicate, and provide feedback.

How do you use Dotstorming in your classroom? What teacher tools would you like to learn more about?

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2016 Teacher Tools

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2016 Teacher Tools: CheckThis

Julie SmithFebruary 5, 2016
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