Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Combining Zite with Instapaper for Quick Research / Classroom Integration

[youtube_sc url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLBgWS0qxec&feature=youtube_gdata"]

I love the Zite Application for use in classroom instruction.  I have seen teachers utilize it for research projects and it has great potential to teach some fantastic business skills.  Tomorrows business leaders need to keep current on trending information.  While it used to be the job of upper management to stay informed, successful companies rely on all employees to present new ideas based on current research.  Zite is a great application for this, and it allows the reader to gain access to new thoughts quickly in an easy to use format.

Instapaper

One feature that Zite offers is the ability to share this information with others.  When you are reading something of interest a simple key press and you have the ability to post a link to an article on Facebook, Twitter and several other useful sites.  In a classroom this could be leveraged for group work over social media, or just a way to organize thoughts.  One idea is to utilize Instapaper with Zite to compile articles of interest on a topic.  Instapaper is a simple little website that essentially organizes websites that you would like to read later.  While there are many other ways to do this, Instapaper does this with some rather good efficiency, and that is very important in the technology classroom.  The ability to store information from Zite to Instapaper in one click, generates a quick page of articles on your subject that are saved for later reading.  The best part is that most of this information is relatively current since it was pulled using the Zite App.

Now your students would have a great list of resources for a paper, video project or other research intensive study.  As a business user, you have a list of articles that you might want to refer to later in order to strengthen your position, or provide research to a committee.

If you are a clever integrator of technology, you could set up an Instapaper for each group of students, or for your classroom.  Then as you read, or individuals in a group find articles of interest they could be placed in one easy to read location.

If you currently do something like this, I would love to see it in action.  Please send me an email, or a link to a video showing how you utilize this type of technology in the classroom.  I will be sure to feature it on this site to share with others.

[youtube_sc url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5pLErRallcU&feature=youtube_gdata"]

Why I Like It:

Instapaper offers the user a quick and responsive way to catalog information so that it can be recalled at a later time.  Perfect for a student or business situation where a large amount of information is being sifted through, prior to its subsequent formatting and presentation.   Zite provides a quick way to keep up to date on articles that relate to your specific topics with the option to send them to Instapaper with the simple press of a key.

How you could use it:

In the classroom Zite could be utilized by students to keep up to date with a wide variety of subjects.  I could easily see a science or social studies teacher using this for current events, or discussion material.  It is very inspiring to the students to read articles that are so current and often positive in nature.  Having students set up an Instapaper account (maybe even as a group) allows them to read articles over a larger time period, saving the ones that they would like to work with later.  The RSS feature of Instapaper could also be utilized on a business/teacher blog to create quick links to important articles that have already been filtered by another reader.

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