Today’s tech snack can be found at the following url: https://insertlearning.com/
What is it and what does it do?
Insert learning is a Chrome Extension tool. What this means is that the tool works only in the Chrome Browser and has to be enabled to work. An extension is a software that enhances the functionality of a browser- in this case Chrome. When you enable the extension, it will show up as a small icon on the upper right of your browser with the purple letter IL.
** You do need a gmail account to use this extension. **
Now, sharing a lesson is different than assigning a lesson. When you enable the extension, you automatically get a dashboard where all your created lessons will live. You also get the ability to add virtual classrooms using the Insertlearning platform or Google classroom. You can create as many classes as you want and there is no limit to the number of students in each class. When you create a class, you provide the name of the class. Every class comes with its own unique class pin. Once you create a classroom you can assign any lesson to your given class. When you assign a lesson to a class, any student who is in the class will receive the lesson. The students in the class will then be able to provide feedback to your lesson and you will be able to track their answers and progress. This information will show up on your Insertlearning dashboard.
Lessons can also be assigned to Google Classroom if you use it, or as a url link and it can be put in any LMS. Regardless of how you assign the lesson, students must do the following two things in order to access any Insertlearning lesson shared:
- All students have extension installed
- All students enrolled in your IL class (self-enrolled or via Google Classroom)
Insert Learning is free to use for up to five lessons. All lessons you create will appear on your dashboard when you login into insertlearning.com or you can get to the dashboard through the extension by clicking on the three dots for sharing options.
As with most Web 2.0 tools, this tool has paid plans as well. You can get more lessons for free if you refer your colleagues to Insert Learning and they sign up for an account. The paid plans vary based on your needs.
- It is a great tool for creating a flexible learning environment.
- It also is a tool that lends itself for a blended learning classroom because students can access content at home and are not restricted to the brick and mortar classroom for content mastery.
- This tool makes it easy to share content without having to deal with creating separate websites for different units/lessons.
- You could also collaborate with other teachers for assignments using this site. You could insert your own questions to the documents and then have students provide their responses.
- You can copy any public lesson into your own google classroom and tweak to meet the needs of your students.
- Great way to engage students in brainstorming.
- Great for collaboration or getting feedback from others.
- Great for note-taking and reflections.
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This extension is a great tool for adding content, but in terms of accessibility it is a mixed bag. The extension can be navigated with a stylus, finger and mouse. The tool cannot be navigated with keyboard commands only. When I tested it with my screenreader, my reader had difficulty reading the overlays. You can certainly add videos and content that is accessible like videos with quality captions, but that’s up to the individual person adding content. So, be aware of the accessibility limitations of this tool if you choose to use it and have alternative means of getting the information to your students as needed.
Until next time at the café….