In a society where technology has almost surpassed the human contacts, finding useful ways of using it is primordial. The debate concerning the use of electronic devices in the educational system has generated a lot of controversy up to now. In my opinion, this debate originates from the lack of information. People do not necessarily know how efficient these tools can be and how to use them. That is why I decided to help them and present a very useful tool.
What is Voicethread?
Voicethread is a cloud application (cloud application is used to describe a software application that is never installed on a local computer. Instead, it is accessed via the Internet.) This application allows you to upload many different types of media such as videos, documents, images etc. Once you have incorporated your Medias in Voicethread, it works like a slide show. When your little presentation is ready, you can invite the people concerned to assist it. That’s when the interactive part of this software comes in. People can comment your presentation at any time. Good thing is you don’t absolutely need a microphone to comment, since those comments can be made by microphone, webcam, phone, text or even by uploading a little audio presentation you’ve previously recorded. Those comments are of course stored in the Voicethread, so that anyone who wants to review them can. People can also modify the images you have posted, so they can clarify their points. For example, students who are studying biology could circle a body part they don’t know the name, the teacher would then instantly know which one they’re talking about. Basically, this is how this software works. It may look that I know this software pretty well but I actually just discovered it. You may want to take a look at the video that helped me.
Advantages of using it
This software is beneficial in many ways. First, it is asynchronous. It means that users can work on the Voicethread at any time, even if their partners are not connected, they can add things to the Voicethread and the users will be able to see them later. This is pretty useful if people from different countries are taking the same class. Second, Voicethread is an easy technology to use. It’s accessible to pretty much everyone, the interface is very easy to use, the recording buttons are easy to find, adding a picture to your Voicethread is as easy as adding an attached file to your e-mail for example. Moreover, Voicethread is engaging, because you can actually see the faces of people you’re discussing with and hear their voices. It’s also a good tool for shy people, who are afraid of talking or expressing an opinion in public. They can overcome their shyness by recording their voice and modifying it before posting it, so that what they want to say comes out exactly like they wanted it to. I found some ways to use it on someone else’s blog. The references at the bottom of the blog are also very useful you should take a look at them if you have a little free time.
Voicethread has to be used. It enables teachers to capitalize on the student’s strengths. It also relies on the creativity of the people using it. This short video really helped me to find out many opportunities to use it in class. Another benefit of Voicethread is that it promotes collaborative learning between students. It allows students to exchange their experience or get feedback from people all over the world. It motivates students with disability, it promotes creativity and participation and IT IS FREE! This technology definitely has to be part of the near future of our educational system.