Tom Barrett

For those of you who were at the CESI conference in Portlaoise in February, you will remember Tom Barrett who gave the keynote address on the Saturday morning. He spoke broadly about the idea of crowdsourcing content with teachers and asked each teacher to use a Post-It note they had been given to write one idea, one simple bit of advice or tip that could be shared. It could be about technology, after all it was a technology conference, but could have been about anything. Tom took these ideas home to England and put them together as a Google Doc to share with the world.

However, Tom also has a great series running on his website, EDTE.CH, called the “Interesting Ways” series. In this series he has asked other teachers to work collaboratively to share the wisdom of their collective classroom practices. This method of sharing is called “crowdsourcing” where he asks teachers to share ideas, or “interesting ways”, of approaching a topic or methodology in the classroom. Among the Interesting Ways on his website are:

  • Use Google Forms in the Classroom
  • Use Google Docs in the classroom
  • Use the iPad in the Classroom
  • Use the iPod in the Classroom
  • Use the IWB in the Classroom
  • Use Mobile Phones in the Classroom
  • Use a Vizualiser in the Classroom
  • Use QR Codes in the Classroom
  • Get To Know Your New Class
  • Support Writing in the Classroom
  • Support Spelling in the Classroom
  • Teach Reading Comprehension in the Classroom
  • Use Nintendo DS in the Classroom
  • Use Nintendo Wii in the Classroom
  • Use Twitter in the Classroom
  • Use a Wiki in the Classroom & many more

These ideas are all put together in shared Google Docs and are available to peruse or to add to. They are a rich source of knowledge and ideas and are well put together by classroom practitioners. Because mainly teachers have added the ideas, they are generally “tried and tested” in the classroom, so you know that they are ideas that work. They are well worth a visit, then bookmarking and then adding your own idea. All these resources can be viewed on Tom’s blog at