4 on-line tools for your students to create interactive timelines

January 14, 2014

Quick overview: A timeline tool allows students to create interactive timelines comprised of significant events. Each “event” on the timeline can be expanded on by the student to include text, images, and video. Timelines can be set private, public, or collaborative.

How can it be used in the classroom? Timeline tools can help students organize various pieces of information in chronological order but are not limited to history courses. Could you ask your students to assemble a timeline of incidents that has lead to a major current event? What about exploring their family history, creating a journal, or documenting the life of an important person? Keep in mind that some students may prefer to simply use paper and pencil to assemble a timeline.. and that’s OK! I think it’s all about giving students the choice to whatever approach works best for them.

Any suggestions for a history course? If you’re teaching a history course, you could ask your students to research and assemble an interactive timeline of a historical event. By encouraging them to analyze all the historical bits and pieces and create their own timeline, they may have a better chance of retaining the information rather than just memorizing a few out-of-context dates.

What are the four timeline tools? Since posting about Dipity a while back, I’ve also learned about TimeToast, TikiToki, and TimeGlider. All four timeline tools offer free accounts but with varying degrees of reduced functionality. Here’s a summary of the tools as of August 2013:

  • TimeToast’s free account allows you to create multiple timelines, but some banner ads will appear.
  • Tiki-Toki’s free account limits you to only 1 timeline at a time and is ad supported. The free account allows students to embed YouTube and Vimeo videos.
  • Dipity’s free account limits you to 3 timelines, limited to 50MB, and is ad supported.
  • TimeGlider free account is limited to 3 timelines, 20 images, and is only available to active students below the graduate level.

Benefits and limitations: Your best bet is to start by creating a free account and explore the tools yourself. Even if one tool is more limited than another, which is ultimately the easiest to use? Do you absolutely love one of the tools but don’t like the limitations of the free account? It might be worth signing up! (Thanks to Marie-Christine Kovacs, ETSB, New Horizons for telling me about Tiki-Toki.)


ICT Tip: Dipity allows students to create media rich interactive timelines

November 1, 2011

This ICT tip could be best applied to the following subjects:

all

Link: www.dipity.com

Quick overview: Dipity helps students to create interactive timelines comprised of significant events. Each “event” on the timeline can be fleshed out by the student to include text, images, and video. Timelines can be set private, public, or collaborative.

How can it be used in the classroom: Instead of asking your students to memorize out-of-context historical dates, why not ask them to research and assemble their own interactive timeline instead? Furthermore, timelines need not be limited to events from ancient history. Instead, students could create a Dipity timeline that contains a breakdown of the various pieces leading up to a current event (i.e – political or economic situation) or they can even assemble a family history or bibliography. Here’s an example of a timeline created with Dipity.

Is it free? Yes, the Dipity website allows for free accounts with most functionality intact. One limitation with free accounts is that you can only create three timeliness per account, with 150 events per timeline. Regardless, that shouldn’t be a problem for most student work.

Video Tutorial: For a short video (3 minutes) on how to use Dipity, please click the play button below:


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