Richard Beach: Defining Purposes for Using Web 2.0 Tools in the Classroom, University of Minnesota:
Faculty website

Blog post: Schools school be teaching, not blocking, social media - Author and school-technology facilitator Steve Johnson believes that schools should no longer be blocking social media because of fears of possible misuse. In this blog post, Johnson argues that more widespread access to social-media tools is inevitable and that educators should be proactive in teaching students how to use social media in positive, creative ways that take advantage of collaborative, community-based learning and help them establish a record of positive use that can and will be tracked by colleges and potential employers

My related resources for teachers:
• Literary tools:
• Digital Writing:
• Teaching media: and
• Teaching literature:
• Teaching Writing Using Blogs, Wikis, and other Digital Tools, by Richard Beach, Chris Anson, Lee-Ann Breuch, and Thom Swiss, 2009 (Christopher Gordon Publishers:

Directory sites for digital tools
• Learning Tools Directory: 3000 Web 2.0 tools
• Top 100 Tools for Learning 2009
• Cool Cat Teacher’s favorite 122 apps
• Cool Tools For Schools
• KathySchrock: Web 2.0 tools
• 100 Excellent Online Tools to Feed Your Creativity
• Ning sites for English teachers:
• The Digital Writing Workshop, by Troy Hicks, 2009 (Heinemann)
• The English Companion Ning
• NewLits: resources on new literacies:

Purpose: Acquiring/subscribing to/sharing information
• Importance of accessing and connecting to information as part of being a member of social community
• Using RSS feeds: Bloglines or Google Reader
• Reading RSS feeds with Bloglines
• View the video: Adding RSS feeds to blogs:
• For collecting texts, images, or video, students need to know how to use tags as key terms to categorize specific sites, blog posts, or images/clips.
• Bookmarking and sharing links/tags: Diigo or Delicious:
• Share bookmarks with students in a class using in Diigo groups; Diigo can also be used to add annotations to online literary texts for sharing responses to literature.
• Video: Using Diigo for social bookmarking
• Using the Group feature on Diigo - add Diigo to your browser as a toolbar to activate with the pull-down Diigolet to bookmark sites, and then create you class(s) as a Group to share those bookmarked sites with other students in the class by opening up the Share to group link and clicking on the Group name. As an educator, set up special Educator accounts to add students to a class account along with privacy settings: Add comments/annotations to any site or blog post by highlighting a section and then clicking on the tiny box on top of the highlighted area to add a "sticky note” to give students written comments about their work.
• Students can also respond with comments to online literature as a way to conduct online responses to literature from the following sites:
o Academy of American Poets (, Project Gutenberg,
o Poetry Archives (,
o American Verse Project (
o Library of Congress Poetry (,
o Favorite Poem (,
o Poetry 180 (a poem a day for high school students:,
o Perseus Digital Library (,
o Project Gutenberg (,
o Digital Book Index (,
o Online Library of Literature (
• Creating digital book talks to add to your course website, blog, or wiki
o Digital Booktalk (, Nancy Keane’s site:,
o the Digital Booktalk site: , or
o Crystal Booth’s tutorial on creating book trailers (

Purpose: Using digital mind mapping for inquiry of events, spaces, and institutions
• Inspiration,, VUE, Cmap, Text2Mind Map, DebateMapper, Comapping, Compendium, WisdomMap, Freemind, My Mind, Belvedere, Mindomo, Mind 42, Umlet 3.2, VYM (View Your Mind), Mindmeister
• Mind-map of different types of mind-mapping tools:
• Video: Concept Mapping

Mapping Events/Space/Institutional Relationships
• Students can draw maps of an event or space by noting the physical location and relationships between people and things, maps that would help them perceived the relationships between events, spaces, and institutions
• Events. At the top, students map a specific event by drawing a circle and include people in event, along with spokes out to other smaller satellite circles that represent traits, practices, and goals. They can also draw lines between people to portray status/footing differences.
• Spaces. Then, in the middle, students draw another circle that represents the space or spaces shaping the event—spaces that may be defined by gender, race, or class discourses.
• Systems/social worlds. Then, at the bottom of the sheet, draw a circle that shows the systems or social worlds--the law, religion, science, business, education, media, science, entertainment, unions, health-care, etc. shaping the event and space constructed and mediated by discourses or cultural models.

Using Maps to Connect the Dots: How Institutional Forces Shape Events and Spaces
Students could then create maps identifying connections between how larger institutional forces shape neighborhoods, connecting the dots in terms of how these institutions support or limit the quality of life in a neighborhood. For example, in studying food consumption in a urban neighborhood, students may note the lack of grocery stores with vegetable or fruit products and the easy availability of high-fat food from fast-food restaurants, food related to higher obesity and diabetes rates that increase health care costs. Students may also critically examine how food manufacturers and fast-food restaurants employ advertising to promote this food to low-income/youth audiences.

Connecting the Dots: food policy and health care
• Agri-business/corn lobby ←→ campaign donations ←→ government farm policies ←→ Manufactured food ←→ lack of urban grocery stores with fresh vegetables/fruit ←→ fast food restaurants/advertising ←→ High fat food ←→ obesity ←→ increased health-care costs
• Documentary: Food, Inc.

Purpose: Collaborative Construction of Knowledge
• Wikis: PBWorks (, Wikispaces (, or Wetpaint (
• Wikipedia: Schools_and_universities_project:
• Matt Barton, St. Cloud State U: Rhetoric and Composition wikibook:
• Theresa Haider, Cretin-Durham Hall HS: Use of a wiki with The Kite Runner
• Scott Wertsch, Champlin Park HS: literature circles:
• Katie Bruhn: world literature:
• Molly Melton, Minnesota Zoo school: 12th grade AP Literature class:

Social networking/forum sites
• Moodle, Ning, Google Groups, YackPack,
• Youth Voices: exchanges between high school students:
• Space2cre8: (international exchange between India and New York students):
• Literary Worlds site ( (Rozema & Webb, 2008). On the Literary Worlds site, students can enter into and engage in synchronous chat about frequently taught texts such as Brave New World, Things Fall Apart, Of Mice and Men, The Great Gatsby, and 1984.

Purpose: Creating Multimodal Texts
Digital comics
• Comic Life:
• Bitstrips:
• Make Beliefs Comics:;
• Comiq:
• GoAnimate:; Stripgenerator:; ToonDoo:; Read Write Think Comic Creator 2.0:
Remixing texts
• Remix America (remix historical speeches/words with contemptory events:;
• Adbusters:; “Photoshopping” remixes:; music and music video remixes:,; Moving image remixes:;; manga and anime fan art:; TV/book:
Digital storytelling/literature/poetry
• DUSTY (Digital Underground Storytelling For Youth) site:
• Digital storytelling tools such as Storymaker (, Umanjin (, or MixBook (
Mashups or remixes of literary texts
• Adbusters or Remix America Or examples of brand images on TinEye: is a reverse image search engine in which you submit an image and it provides original or other versions of the same image or parody version of that image
Creating an ad spoof:
• fictitious or actual product
• Mashups of Shakespeare plays on YouTube, for example, “Hamlet Is Back,” with clips from Arnold Schwarzenegger in The Last Action Hero (,
• Living Iambic Pentameter (,
• “Romeo & Juliet Stop Motion Style.” (, “Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (Parody),” ( watch?v=bm1_zwUDOSE) “CSI: Macbeth” ( (Desmet, 2009) Remixes of Moby Dick:

Purpose: Using VoiceThread for audio or text critical analysis of media representations
• Using the New York Public Library digital gallery to create VoiceThreads - select a certain phenomena or type as portrayed in the media: teachers, men, women, nature, “the city,” the elderly, crime, adolescents, “vacations,” schools, love, religion, sex, sports, etc., For example, Douglas Wall’s video on the inauthentic uses of images, for example, images of “authentic Mexican” food
• Find some Creative Commons images on Flickr, Google Images, Yahoo Images, etc. about your topic (note: you may need to try multiple, alternative keywords to find relevant images).
• Download images individually to your computer and then upload them to VoiceThread.
• (For information on using VoiceThread - Add audio commentary to your images as to how and why these are representing your topic in certain ways and how these representations may influence how audiences may think about your topic.
• For examples, see student blogs

Purpose: Formulating arguments using online role-play/games
• Online role-plays employed by Elizabeth Boeser, Jefferson High School
• University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux mascot debate (used with Montana, 1948):
• Censorship role-play:
• Perks of a Wallflower:
• Beach, R., & Doerr-Stevens, C. (2009). Learning argument practices through online role-play: toward a rhetoric of significance and transformation. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy

Purpose: Developing a Sense of Voice through Podcasting
• Podcasting: Recording podcasts on computers using Garageband (Mac only) or Audacity ( For tutorials on podcasting tools:( Students then create a podcast feed from these files Feedburner (, FeedForAll (, or Podomatic (
• Students can also use podcasting to:
o create book talks or productions about a literary texts. Students in Robert Rozema’s college literature class created a podcast based on their reading of the futuristic novel, Feed (Anderson, 2002) in which the main character, Titus, summarizes events in the novel, along with other students quoting passages with background music (Rozema & Webb, 2008).
o record a readers’ theater production ( using scripts in the public domain ( or create their own scripts addressing issues in their lives.
o produce their own radio show about a topics or issue, for example, a show based on the NPR This I Believe program or create stories for a fictional town based on stories about the town of Lake Wobegon on Garrison Keillor’s Prairie Home Companion program. Students who produce the Radio WillowWeb broadcast ( write scripts for mini-dramas that include use of sound effects.
o employ Skype ( free telephone software that employs or interviewing people long distance. For example, in the global podcast project, Rock Our World project (, students create and share podcasts and videos about music across seven continents.

Purpose: Using Digital Tools for Feedback and Self-reflection
• Audio/podcast files recorded on digital recorders or using Garageband/Audacity to give audio feedback to student writing/blog posts.
• Making comments on VoiceThread to respond to VoiceThread productions
• Using Diigo to add annotations/sticky notes to students web-based writing/sites
• Using VideoAnt: for teachers and/or peers add annotations at specific places in a video
• Creating rubrics/criteria
• Using blogs/wikis to create portfolios
• Using Blogger to Create an E-Portfolio
• Troy Hicks et. al, on electronic portfolios:

Here are some resources related to ideas Dr. Richard Beach shared during his virtual interview on Oct. 15, 2009