Sunday, December 9, 2007
Wiffiti--Brainstorming from Cell Phones
I have a new favorite brainstorming tool. Wiffiti! The best part of this tool is that students can brainstorm from their cell phones to a live screen on the web. Since students already text message almost continuously throughout any day, now they can use it for an educational purpose! There are a lot of fantastic teacher "controls" for Wiffiti such as "approving" messages before they are posted or not allowing content with inappropriate words. You can also keep the screen private or share it with the world! I love this tool. Although I imagine that there are a lot of applications for this tool in the classroom, one of the best is brainstorming. A teacher who would like their students to brainstorm some ideas can set up a Wiffiti screen (free of course), then tell students (for homework or in class) to text a special code to the general Wiffiti # (25622), along with their brainstorming idea. It will automatically (or the teacher can set it up to approve the messages before they are posted) post to the Wiffiti screen that the teacher set up. The screen is live so this could be done in class (if teachers are comfortable with cell phones in the classroom) at the spur-of-the-moment or for homework.
Another nice application of Wiffiti in schools is for "story telling." For example if students take a field trip to a local museum, they could text their observations, notes or what they learned during their field trip to the class Wiffiti screen and then back in class they could discuss their experiences. Wiffiti also works with Flickr (therefore the background images on Wiffiti could come from Flickr and since Flickr has a mobile option, students could also post their images from their field trip to Flickr and select one as the background for the class Wiffiti screen.
Feel free to try my screen by texting @kolb07 to 25622 and after you text "@kolb07" put a space and a message, it should automatically show up when the screen refreshes.
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Cell Phones in Learning by Liz Kolb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License. Based on a work at cellphoneseinlearning.com. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://cellphonesinlearning.com.