How I Use It
I have used Voicethread with very young students as a way for them to get to know one another and students in other classes in the school. They each created a slide with their picture and left comments about their favorite foods and activities. The slideshow was played for the group at the beginning of the year when everyone was still learning each other's names. It was then shared with parents so they could add comments and students in neighboring classes left comments or questions to try and get to know each other. It was a great community building activity and helped students see Voicethread as a tool for creation and communication.
We have also used Voicethread to collaborate with students in other countries. Students posted information about our school and culture and then asked questions of the students in another country. Those students then responded via video and audio comments and left questions from our students. The cycle continued a few times until each class had learned about the other class and the culture in that area.
Voicethread is a great app for students to use to share their own knowledge in an engaging and multimedia format. Voicethread allows for five different commenting options (audio, video, text, drawing, phone), which makes it very flexible and accessible for even young students who may not be literate/typing yet. The tool is also a great way for students to communicate and collaborate with students or experts in other locations since users do not need to be active at the same time. Comments can be exchanged across time zones and countries, even by phone in low-broadband areas. Although Voicethread is more structured and slide-based than other tools like Prezi, it still allows for a lot of creative expression and open-ended learning for students when they are allowed to direct the creation of a Voicethread and the comments that are made in response to the content.