An IT Degustation: IT ideas to inspire English Teachers

Google Tools

Google Lit Trips

Google Lit Trips incorporates Literature and Google Earth to create interactive experiences around fiction and non-fiction novels.
Building a Google Lit Trip shows the basics of how to build your own lit trip. See also Lit Trip Tips for more helpful hints.
For help with basic html code for creating fancy placemarks in Google Earth - see here.
Activity Ideas
1. Challenge yourself to make a Lit Trip using Around the World in 80 days by Jules Verne as your inspiration.

Google News Archive

Google News Archive (Australia) Search provides an easy way to search and explore historical archives including Newspapers such as the Sydney Morning Herald and the New York Times to name a few.

Google Docs

Google Docs are Google's answer to Microsoft Office online. All you need is a free Google email account to get started. No need to download software, store all your documents online and even better invite colleagues, students or experts to collaborate with you by inviting them to edit your document. Take a look at this brief tutorial movie on Google Docs by John Clear.

Photostory 3

Photostory 3 for Windows is a free download. With this simple to use application you can easily collect photos together to create a basic animated movie file. Add voice over and music too if you like. For Mac users, iMovie will do the same thing.


Voicethread Create a video that can be collaboratively voice annotated if you wish. Also works for documents and images. Click here for lots of examples. Click here for an explanation of Ed Voicethread (the educator version)
Voicethreads in Education Art Appreciation
Ophelia: Method to the Madness? and Pauline's Ophelia voicethread


Activity Ideas
1. Make a demo Wordle and discuss eg” Kevin Rudd vs Brendan Nelson “Sorry Day speech”
2. Do a bias test (tip: strip out key topic words using Find & Replace in Microsoft Word for different examination of text)
Martin Luther King http://www.martinlutherking.org/ vs http://www.thekingcenter.org/mlk/bio.html
Death Penalty http://www.prodeathpenalty.com/DP.html vs http://www.amnesty.org/en/death-penalty/research-publications
3. Consider implications for debating, analysis of writing themes, flavour of several book reviews - what is the emphasis? etc

ABCya! word clouds is an alternative site that makes similar word clouds.


RSS: A Quick Start Guide for Educators written by Will Richardson.
Also see this quick video tutorial on how to set up an RSS feed in iGoogle by John Clear.

Aggregators/Feed Readers

Google Reader (you must have a free gmail email account to set this up)

Personal Customisable Start Pages

iGoogle (you must have a free gmail email account to set this up), Netvibes and Pageflakes are customisable Web 2.0 home page or start pages with a very simple interface. Personalise a page with a wide range of content such as RSS/Atom feeds, and Web 2.0 services . Access your page anywhere, anytime.

RSS Feed Creators

Feedburner Do you have a page you'd like to set up an RSS feed for? The next step is to visit this site and create one.

Other Useful RSS Sites

RSS Locator RSS Directory
Search4RSS RSS Directory
RSS Compedium Rss feeds from governments around the world
The Age RSS Channel Page
The Sydney Morning Herald RSS Channel Page

Pageflakes Example Pagecasts

Adrian Bruce

Creative Commons

A whole host of information about Creative Commons and copyright free media of all types can be found on the Copyright & Fair Use page of this wiki.

The Commons on Flickr's aim is to show you hidden treasures in the world's public photography archives. Your input and knowledge can help make these collections even richer as you can tag images and leave comments about images in a multitude of collections.

Media Players

VideoLan VLC Media Player

Tips and Tricks with Microsoft Word

Embed a sound file for immediate feedback see this tutorial video on embedding a sound file in Word (Office 2003 version for PC).
The process is almost identical to do this same thing in Word 2007 version for PC. The only difference being you must click the Insert tab on the Ribbon > Object > Object > Wave File

Screen Capture & Video Tutorials

The movies were made with a free screen recorder called Jing (Don't forget that your IWB (if you have one) probably has a screen recorder built into it. Using this to capture the screen is advantageous as you can use a free flowing pen motion as opposed to trying to draw with a mouse.)

Online Bookmarking

Delicious allows you to save and tag websites of interest and store them online. Share with colleagues or students too.

Other websites of interest

The red room company combine poetry and art in a range of projects and involve schools in many of them.
Inside a dog This is a website for young people about books.
State Library of Victoria Ergo Siteincludes many writing resources such as the essay writing page
Bibme Autofills citations and scaffolds correct citations from many sources for students.
Plagium Track plagarism with this handy online tool