Day 4: “A to Z” Guide of Apps & Web 2.0 Tools

Today’s Tool: Dipity

Screen Shot 2014-01-12 at 3.18.10 PMDipity is a free, web-based, interactive digital timeline creation tool that I discovered last year and is something I plan to use with my students next semester.  Dipity timelines integrate video, audio, images, text, links, social media, and more. Once created, timelines can be shared or embedded. Personal Dipity accounts are limited to 3 timelines and a total of 150 events, however there are paid premium account options if you decide to adopt Dipity as one of your foundational technology tools.

Connection to Digital Citizenship

Having your students create a digital timeline and share their creation via their blog, Twitter, or Facebook is one way to help them build a positive and impressive digital footprint. On top of demonstrating their tech-savviness, creativity, and their analytical and critical thinking skills, a Dipity timeline showcases students’ ability to conduct valid research and properly cite online sources, (especially locating images that are free to use and share) which are additional components of being digitally responsible. A well-designed Dipity timeline would be an excellent artifact to include in student’s digital portfolio.

Opportunities for Teachers

As a teacher, once you create your account, (which takes less than two minutes) you can search through timelines that have been created by others. Searching timelines by keyword will give you all kinds of ideas and inspiration on how you could integrate Dipity as a tool into your curriculum. Once you have created the Dipity assignment, and have established the learning goals for your students, building the timeline is actually quite simple. Below is a screenshot with the different components of what can be added to each event in your timeline.

Screen Shot 2014-01-12 at 4.17.17 PM

I experimented with Dipity by creating a  sample timeline featuring a (very) few key events in the history and development of Google. The sample timeline can be viewed by clicking here. Regardless of what content area you teach, odds are you have a unit that would lend itself to Dipity. Here are some ideas for various content areas:

1. History- timelines featuring significant events and supporting details from various wars, presidencies, and the development of governments and economies

2. Science & Math- timelines of famous astronomers, chemists, physicists, biologists, and mathematcians and the specific contributions these people made to the world of science and math

3. Foreign Language- timelines of the history, culture, art, or architecture of a French, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, or Italian-speaking country (or any other language you may teach). Students could write their timelines in the language they are learning to speak in your class

4. Business & Marketing- timelines highlighting the development of particular companies, brands, or entrepreneurs

As mentioned, you can explore a large gallery of timelines created by others in the hot topics section of Dipity.

I hope you will try Dipity at some point this year and give your students the chance to demonstrate their learning using this interactive tool. Please share the work of your students with me if you decide to use it!

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