Web Watch: Theme-efy

A great new site for online publishing of learning content – by both teachers and learners – Theme-efy can be used for lessons, assignments and projects, web research, presentations, sharing of knowledge and social discussions.

Themeefy.com (pronounced ‘theme-ify’) is a free web-based platform for publishing learning content, and a virtual environment for connecting learners in order to facilitate the creation and sharing of content. You can design lessons and present them in an electronic magazine format, with pictures and videos easily added, and organized by different themes.  But you can also use it for your students to create, publish and then present e-magazines, or webzines.  Using Themeefy, students can select a topic, search the internet for information which they filter and select, and then present their webzine to the class.

Using elements of authentic learning (see previous blog posting, October 24), students can be given a problem to solve, or an issue to research, and then work together to make judgments about relevant and reliable information to utilize, with Theme-efy as an empty canvas upon which they can create a masterpiece! They should decide what rules and procedures they will follow in order to arrive at a finished product. Presenting their webzines to the class also helps students to hone their communication skills using multiple media.

So, in an English classroom, for example, whatever your learners are studying could be assigned as a research and present task – where groups collaborate on the construction of a webzine to present their findings. Using an authentic scenario, they could imagine themselves as an editorial board of an associated online magazine, and be required to publish their learning on the Theme-efy platform.  Keeping the task open-ended and not too specific, students would decide for themselves what exactly they could generate and include in their final product, using a variety of multi-media available to them. Remember, “modeling technology use for kids risks limiting them. Better to assign tasks to teams and say ‘surprise me’”. (Marc Prensky, Twitter, 3/4/13)

Categories: Web Watch

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