This is our second article on free digital tools that don't require a login. To see the first set, click this link.
The truth about digital tools is that there aren't many that are really free. Most "free" tools have some catch. The best tools give you a liberal amount of usage for free and then you can elect to buy more features. But many of these free digital tools have one seemingly insurmountable roadblock for some educators: They require the user to establish a log-in and password. While many school systems permit users to do this, some do not...especially when it comes to younger students. What follows here is a review of two excellent, free, digital tools that can be used online without a log-in or password or the divulging of any personal information. One applies to the world of reading and language arts. The other is a math game site.
My Shakespeare. My Shakespeare takes four of the bards most famous plays and augments them with audio recordings, contemporary translations, pop-up notes, videos, performances, and character interviews. Anyone who has taught Shakespeare to high school students knows much of the enjoyment can be lost in a world of Elizabethan prose and poetry. With My Shakespeare, a young reader can instantly see translations of difficult passages, hear them performed with audio and video, or read applicable notes. My Shakespeare could seriously increase a students ability to engage with the bard because it addresses the Design Quality of Organization of Knowledge so well. Thanks to Caitlin Tucker for sharing this tool. She has an extended blog here.
Math Playground. Math Playground offers a large assortment of math games in a variety of topics. The content looks elementary to middle school in terms of topics and difficulty, but math teachers may find some of the games move into high school content. The good news here is students just go to the site and play - no login required. Another strength for this site is the sheer amount of Novelty and Variety. There are over 100 games available.
The list of digital tools that can be accessed without first establishing an account is growing. If your budget is tight or access is highly restricted, consider these tools and the others in our first blog.