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Familiar Tools Offer New Tricks for K-12 Educators

By Jennifer Snelling
January 10, 2022
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When the question is about making online learning engaging, Leslie Fisher has a lot of ideas. As a student, school was just something to get through. When she went to college, she discovered the joys of education technology.

Now, she’s spent the last two decades supporting teachers who are using technology to inspire students. Teachers are looking for technology ideas now more than ever, and there are so many ways edtech can enrich learning.

“We’re seeing teachers come to trainings who never expected to use technology, but now they see it have more of an impact in their classroom than they thought it would,” she says. “Every teacher has to be a technology teacher.”

Here are some of the ways Fisher is finding that apps are serving teachers.


Even teachers who are already familiar with the video discussion tool, may not realize that Flipgrid allows for screen sharing. This feature is great for teachers who want to share examples from their screen while recording the lesson.


Lots of teachers have been using Kahoot for immediate classroom assessments, but did you know you can assign Kahoot to be taken at home using Kahoot Challenge mode? You can also turn off the timer and allow students to work at their own pace. In addition, students who don't have devices with the app can access it through a browser. Also, look for Study Leagues, which allow students to study together.

Microsoft’s Immersive Reader.

Microsoft Immersive Reader is an extension for struggling readers and also offers language translations for videos. This is a game-changer for ESL students, says Fisher.  

Stream Deck.

Originally for gamers, Stream Deck is a control pad for live streaming that lets teachers easily launch apps, adjust volume or screens without missing a beat.


The popular digital storytelling curator, Wakelet is helping students and teachers collaborate without needing student email addresses.

Free to educators, lets you share a board with your student to use on their own and in small or large groups. It has a packed feature set and works equally well in remote, hybrid and in-person settings. 

ISTE membership

Jennifer Snelling is a blogger from Eugene, Oregon, who writes about technology for learning.