Glogster possesses limitless potential as an educational resource. As a teacher, I see Glogster as an incredibly motivational forum for student expression. Bottom line, students love using technology and students love expressing themselves creatively. With Glogster, students can fuse their learning and their creativity to develop an interactive poster that is uniquely theirs. These digital posters, representing student understanding and knowledge, can then be used as a powerful assessment of student learning. Glogs, or interactive posters, can be incorporated into any subject area and can be used to integrate technology into traditionally text dependent content areas. This year, my students have created glogs for historical figures, science concepts, as well as book studies. The products my students created demonstrated higher order thinking, creativity, and deep knowledge of the content or information.
From a logistical perspective, Glogster is one of the easier web-based resources to incorporate into a learning experience. Glogster is well-designed, and incredibly user friendly. In all reality, students can probably navigate the site and create a poster with very little teacher support or assistance. Learning time is maximized with these digital posters, as students have instant access to “drag and drop” resources into their glog to represent content. Glogster is also a very safe way for students to create digital posters. With a private and safe platform, teachers can view posters and maintain control of the forum, or can set the settings to share the poster with others.
As with all technology integration, challenges and obstacles can arise. I think one of the most common challenges with Glogster is that, in order for it to be maximized in the classroom, a teacher needs a membership. While the general use of Glogster is free, a teacher account (which then provides 50 student accounts) costs around $30. This is the best way to get all students on to Glogster simultaneously (without setting up individual e-mail-based accounts for each student.) This challenge can be overcome by staggering student work on Glogster, and allowing several students at a time to access one class account. Another challenge could be simply logistical. Getting a class of elementary school students to create a digital poster, unlike any previous learning experience can bring a lot of questions and needed assurance. With teacher modeling of Glogster usage, guided and independent practice, students should be able to easily and effectively use this resource. Because it is so user friendly and motivational, I think the benefits of this tool far exceed any challenges that may be faced through its usage.