As digital teachers we are always having to create or modify digital content, whether it is text or multimedia. Many of tools that we as educators use need to be easy to learn and work correctly with little technical support, since we have so many different things to do and very little time to get things done. So here is a list of tools that are used to create digital content and most of these apps are free to help work within the ever tightening school budgets.
Dropbox – A great could based file sharing service that can be very useful for keeping multiple a set of files of work files available anywhere there is an internet connection. This service stands out primarily because of its ease of use on a variety of platforms (web, windows, mac and mobile).
Firefox – One of the most stable and versatile web browsing platforms that works excellent for educators and students alike.
Evernote – Excellent note taking application that keeps your notes and many file types organized and highly searchable, excellent for both high school and college students.
GIMP – This open-source equivalent of the famed Photoshop is fairly easy to learn the basics of photo editing, but also highly extendable through plug-ins and addons. The best reason for using it over its expensive counterpart is that it is free!
Inkscape – A vector graphics tool that is great for creating signs, line graphics and logos. This can be a very used for a variety of educational graphics tasks and as with GIMP it is free as well.
Truecrypt – If you are needing to keep student data in a spreadsheets for data-analysis purposes, FERPA law requires that it be encrypted and Truecrypt is an excellent free tool for keeping student data encrypted and secure.
iTALC – If you have a computer lab in your room and are a tight budget as most of us are, then iTALC is your choice for lab monitoring. While it does not have the optimization that LANmanger has it is still an excellent choice for monitoring a computer lab and keeping students out of websites that are distractions.
VirtualDub – Another open-source tool that is used to capture and edit video, very light-weight and while it really only is good at capturing video it can be used to edit video footage as well.
Winamp – Great music and video playing application.
Windows Movie Maker – This little known application comes on most windows computers already though it is often hidden in the variety of other applications that come preinstalled on most windows machines. This video editing software is a very simple to use tool for making classroom videos from scratch, you can load raw footage and edit it together to make a movie suitable for class.