Best-in-Category Winners: 2016

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tech ed categoryWe hear from readers all the thime about how much they rely on Ask a Tech Teacher for classroom tech-in-ed resources. Weekly, we share favorite websites, apps, and pedagogy that make a difference in the classrooms of our readers.

This year, for the first time, we’ll share with you which tools had the greatest impact on our readers. To award this Best in Category badge, we looked at which resources were most visited by our readers in each category. Then we looked for the following qualities:

  • how dependable is the tool or advice
  • how versatile is it for time-strapped teachers
  • does it differentiate for the varied needs of students and teacher

Here are the Best-in-Category and Honorable Mentions for the following Categories:

Classroom Management Tool

Winner: Dial My Calls–an easy and quick way to call lists of people from your school (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Doodle–simplify scheduling


Winner: Scratch Jr. — simplified coding with an app for ages 5-7 (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Minecraft (see my review)

Digital Notetaking

Winner:  Google Keep–essential notetaking tools; part of Google Apps

Honorable Mention: Notability–full-featured digital notetaking tool

Digital Storytelling Tool

Winner: Storyboard That!–mix of caricatures, text and images to tell  a comicbook-style story (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Sway — quick and easy desktop publishing from MS Office

G Suite Help

Winner: Alice Keeler — so many tips and tricks for Google Apps

Honorable Mention:


Winner: Scribble Maps — maps you can mark up (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Google Earth

Keyboarding Digital Tool

Winner:  Big Brown Bear — great starter keyboarding program

Honorable Mention: KidzType — games, drills, and more (see my review)

Learning Management System

Winner: Otus (see my review here)

Honorable Mention: CanaryFlow (see my review)

Lesson Planning

Winner: Frolyc aka Activity Circle (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Office Mix — a free add-on for PowerPoint

Math Tool

Winner: C-STEM — tools to learn math through robotics (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Zap Zap Math — math app with games and drills (see my review)

Professional Development

Winner: Nepris — virtual field trips for teachers and students (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Bloomboard –peer-group PD (see my review)

Reading Tool

Winner: Snap! Learning — close reading solutions (see my review)

Honorable Mention: News-o-matic — age-appropriate news stories

Resource Aggregator

Winner: Mentoring Minds — resources to help students reach their goals (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Cybraryman

Special Needs Tools:

Winner:  Sonocent — note-taking for special needs students (see my review)

Honorable Mention:  Carol Leynse Harpold

Tech Ed Tool

Winner: Banzai — financial literacy (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Photos for Class — (see my review)

Tech Tips

Winner: Free Tech for Teachers

Honorable Mention: Teachers Tech — videos on how to do so many tasks

Video Creation Tools:

Winner:  Google Hangouts

Honorable Mention:  My Simpleshow — online video creator

Writing Tool

Winner: Revision Assistant — assistance with student writing (see my review)

Honorable Mention: Grammarly — automatic grammar assistance (see my review)