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  • Victoria Hekking

Free Apps and Extensions for Online Learning

By Sarah Polhill & Victoria Hekking |

Photo by Kelly Sikkema | Unsplash

At Construct, we integrate a variety of resources into the courses that we create in order to facilitate better collaboration and interaction between educators and learners. We worked with our team of learning experts to make a list of some of our favorite learning resources. Due to current circumstances, you will find that many of them are currently free.

Kami

Imagine you could treat your computer screen like a pen and paper. Welcome to Kami where you can do just that. Kami enables students and teachers to annotate documents by drawing, text, audio, and video. Teachers can use these tools to provide feedback, in addition to marking up, grading, and returning work. They can also create online assignments from existing word documents where students can type in their responses. Students can benefit from the collaborative capabilities of kami that enable them to work with each other in real time. Students can also use the tool to annotate ebooks and documents. 


Kami integrates in google classroom, schoology, and Canvas. Kami is currently offering free assistance to schools that have closed due to COVID-19.



Flipgrid


Flipgrid enables brief, video discussions that can help personalize remote learning. Educators can use Flipgrid for a variety of purposes, including discussions, lectures, presentations, and any other communication you might do in real time. Educators can provide general or customized, private video feedback to students. There is also an option to upload rubrics. Teachers have the option to change settings to view videos from students before they are presented to the rest of the class. With Flipgrid, you can also access Disco library, a free library of potential topics for your discussions. 


Flipgrid is free at all times, not just right now. 


CK-12 Foundation


If you are running out of time or resources for your class, take a look at the open education resources from CK-12. Explore their collection of Flexbooks, customizable digital textbooks. They have material for all major school subjects. They also have a discussion form (Cafe), simulations for scientific experiments, study guides, and webinars. 

CK-12 is always free. 



Hypothes.is


Hypothes.is is a platform that allows learners and educators to annotate documents online as well as access and review each others’ annotations. This is a great way for educators to assign readings and follow the thought processes of their students. This process also works in reverse: teachers can provide their thoughts to students as they read through assigned materials. The platform also facilitates collaboration; students can share articles with each other while working from different locations.


Hypothes.is is giving all institutions free access during 2020.


Microsoft Teams 


Having difficulty engaging your students while teaching remotely? Microsoft Teams is your ideal tool. You can instant message students, like and comment, create channels to group conversations and topics, and work together in real time using Office 365. With Microsoft Teams you also have access to video conferencing, a secure gradebook, notebooks to share content and resources, third-party apps, and assignments. 


Microsoft Teams is currently free for schools.  


We recognize that the quick switch to online and remote work has been challenging for many people. We hope these resources can help you enhance interaction and learning with your colleagues and learners. If you know of any other free resources or have specific platforms that you like to use, do not hesitate to share them. Chances are if they can help you, they can help someone else too.

Sarah Polhill

Learning Designer at Construct


Victoria Hekking

Marketing Coordinator at Construct