This article was written specifically for high school students and those who teach them. Teachers, you should not be solely teaching students the content of your course. Consider teaching them tech and digital citizenship skills that transcend the walls of your classroom. They may not remember who Hammurabi is in four years (sorry, it’s true) but they will remember you taught them how to use “that cool tool that cited their sources for them” as they are knee deep in a college research paper. I promise, they will thank you for infusing technology into your classroom. So, here is my list of 7 tools high school students should try this year! Enjoy!
- a calendar.
- a place to store files in the cloud.
- the ability to create quick notes.
- compatible/accessible on all devices.
Top picks include Google, MS OneNote, and Evernote. If your school already uses Google Apps for Education or MicrosoftEDU you should too! Just keep in mind that once you graduate, you will no longer have an account through your high school so plan accordingly. Consider saving files in several places for this reason. Dropbox is also a great, free option.
YouTube is for learning too, not just watching funny videos. The beauty of the Internet is you can find pretty much anything you want to know at a click of a few buttons. READ: take learning into your own hands. Videos are useful because you can hear, see, and visualize the concepts you need to learn. Sometimes information that is perfectly clear in class becomes muddled when you try to apply it later. If this happens to you resist the urge to make excuses….and look on YouTube.
Citation Machine makes references a breeze. Learn how to properly site your sources- it’s a must! All you have to do is fill in the required fields and it generates references for you in APA, MLA, or Chicago Style. Plus, it’s free and easy to use. There is no need to get unnecessary points taken off for your work for not properly citing your sources. This is great practice for college and it’s part of being a good digital citizen. Think about it, would you be happy if someone took credit for work you did? Nope, didn’t think so!
This web tool will help you study smarter not harder. Give Brainscape a try! It has proclaimed itself “flashcards on steroids,” which will help you master even the most difficult concepts!
Choose a curation tool to compile and access all of your favorite websites, tools, and apps. Try Pinterest, Symbaloo, or Educlipper. These are my top picks because they will likely be available on your school network and provide you with the ability to easily share your most beloved tech tools with your friends and even your teachers.
Presentation tools that aren’t boring. My top picks are Prezi, Powtoon, Voki, Goanimate, and ThingLink. All of them are user friendly and really pack in the “wow factor.” There are so many options out there (see the list above) that can truly bring your content to life. Reconsider using the boring, familiar PowerPoint.
Start building a digital portfolio of your best work- the sooner the better! Consider using a free web-hosted site like WordPress, Blogger, or Weebly. You can continue to build your digital portfolio throughout high school and college. Think long term…..internship and job opportunities down the road.
I hope you find this list of tools high school students should use helpful! Do you have any suggestions students should consider next school year? If so, I’d love to hear them!