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Tutorial – 5 Fun Free Photo And Image Editing Applications For The Classroom

by Kelly Walsh on February 6, 2011

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An introduction to the ins and outs of 5 free online image editing application, and some suggestions for using them in the classroom.

Last year I wrote this short series of articles in which I looked at a slew of free image editing tools found on the Web, and ultimately boiled these down to a set of 5 recommendations.  This last Thursday, I had the pleasure of delivering a presentation that evolved out of those articles, as part of  a Webinar offered by College Open Textbooks. (My thanks to Jacky Hood, the Director of College Open Textbooks, for offering me the opportunity to do this).

Participants in the webinar seemed interested and appreciative of the material, and I was inspired to record the presentation in an introductory tutorial format. The video below introduces the five different applications, and discusses how to upload files into them, some of the editing options in each tool, and how each app lets you save your masterpieces. Following the video are some ideas for ways in which these types of tools might be used in the classroom. [Click here to open this video directly in YouTube].

Ideas for using these tools in the classroom:

  • Optimize pictures and images for your use in content you are creating for the classroom.
  • Take digital photos of student’s artwork, and enhance their presentation with “frame” layouts or other edits.
  • Use free (and copyright free) online art and image sites to download images for students to edit and use in assignments.
  • Have students use their own images or pictures and manipulate or enhance them using these tools
  • Create slideshows, timelines, or picture collages of famous people or events
  • Create an instant web page to present photos/images

Some subject-specific ideas from The University of South Florida:

I found this list of suggestions for using photo and imaging editing applications on usf.edu web site. The list is particularly nice because it is subject-specific. Below are a few of the suggestions found there (click through to the web page to read the full listing).

  • Foreign Language: Photo Editing software in foreign language can help students build vocabulary through images and skills in expressing themselves in the target language as they tell stories through digital photos.
  • Language Arts: Photo Editing software in language arts is a tool to help students tell a story through digital photos by creating slideshows, e-books, photo journals, and comic strips. Using transitions and editing they can demonstrate their understanding of the text through visual effects.
  • Mathematics: Photo Editing software in math can help students visually represent math calculations and geometric shapes. Photos can also be used to make puzzles.

I hope you find these resources worth giving a try yourself – they really are fun and engaging!

Related Posts (if the above topic is of interest, you might want to check these out):
A closer look at 5 free picture and image editing tools
Picasa – Google’s free picture and image editing and management tool
More fun, free online photo and image editing tools

About 

Kelly Walsh is Chief Information Officer, and an adjunct faculty member, at The College of Westchester in White Plains, NY and is the founder and author of EmergingEdTech.com. As an education technology advocate, he frequently delivers presentations on a variety of related topics at schools and conferences across the U.S. Walsh is also an author, and online educator, periodically running Flipped Class Workshops online. His latest eBook, the Flipped Class Workshop in a Book was published in September, 2013 and is available here. In his spare time Walsh also writes, records, and performs original (and cover) songs (look for "K. Walsh" on iTunes or Amazon.com or check out his original song videos on here on YouTube ).

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