Top 10 Tools for Online and Blended Learning!

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Listen and learn : Panel

Dr. Jennifer Courduff  
Dr. Peter Hessling  
Dr. Jean Kiekel  
Dr. Dennis McElroy  
Rachelle Dene Poth  
Dr. Mia Kim Williams  

How do teachers keep technology tools integrated meaningfully in blended and online learning? This interactive session will showcase a list of top 10 tools every new teacher needs and include a discussion about their potential to strengthen experiences for diverse learners and to promote strong home-school connection.

Audience: Teachers, Teacher education/higher ed faculty, Technology coordinators/facilitators
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices useful
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Android, iOS, Windows
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Topic: Innovative learning environments
ISTE Standards: For Educators:
  • Collaborate and co-learn with students to discover and use new digital resources and diagnose and troubleshoot technology issues.
  • Use collaborative tools to expand students' authentic, real-world learning experiences by engaging virtually with experts, teams and students, locally and globally.
  • Set professional learning goals to explore and apply pedagogical approaches made possible by technology and reflect on their effectiveness.
Additional detail: ISTE author presentation

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

This session is designed to connect teacher education program faculty with pre- and in-service teachers by fostering conversations about how to better prepare teachers to use technology for teaching and learning.


This session will start with a rapid pace “10 tools in 10 minutes” IGNITE-style presentation featuring a list of tools crowdsourced from the ISTE Teacher Education Network. Each tool will be connected to one of the ISTE Standards for Students or Educators.

The audience will then be asked to get into groups of 6-8 to engage in a critical discussion about these tools.

Example questions to guide the discussion include:
1) How do/might you use these tools for teaching, learning, or mentoring?
2) How can these tools be adapted for use with students with behavioral, cognitive, or physical disabilities?
3) How can these tools be adapted for use with gifted students?
4) How might these tools be used to bring the learning home and strengthen home-school connections?
Finally, we will return to the whole group setting to explore insights, ideas, and issues from the small group discussions.

Supporting research

Common Sense Education (2020). Best Tools for Virtual and Distance Learning. Retrieved from
Colorful Teacher (2020). Top 10 Tech Tools for Distance Learning. Retrieved from

Courduff, J. & Orton, S. (2020, September). AbleNet live webinar. They want me to do what? Thriving in a blended classroom.

Courduff, J. (2020, Apr 17 - 21) Personal, Cultural, and Institutional Perspectives of Special Education Technology Integrators: A Narrative Inquiry [Roundtable Session]. AERA Annual Meeting San Francisco, CA (Conference Canceled).

Courduff, J., Lee, H. & Cannaday, J. (2020, Apr 17 - 21) The Impact of Teaching, Cognitive, and Social Presences in Face-to-Face, Blended, and Online Master's Courses [Roundtable Session].

AERA Annual Meeting San Francisco, CA (Conference Canceled).
Courduff, J., Wenger, C. (2020, April). AbleNet live webinar. Unleashing the power of UDL: Top digital tools for the inclusive classroom.

Courduff, J., Wenger, C. (2019, September). AbleNet live webinar. Speech Dude: The freedom series – part 2. The flipside of disability is giftedness. Discovering natural giftedness within students and helping them to plug in to their own brilliance!
Courduff, J., Kiekle, J., Bedesem, P., & McElroy, D. (June 25, 2019). Rockin’ the innovative technology tools that support the inclusive classroom! Accepted panel: International Society of Technology in Education (ISTE), Philadelphia, PA.

Courduff, J., Kiekle, J., Bedesem, P., Poyo, S., & McElroy, D., Cash, C., Poth, R. (June 25, 2019). Secret’s out! Top-10-least-known-tools for educators. Accepted interactive lecture: International Society of Technology in Education (ISTE), Philadelphia, PA.

Cult of Pedagogy (2020). 6 Ed Tech Tools to Try in 2020. Retrieved from

Edutopia (2020). Technology Integration. Retrieved from

Fecich, S., Courduff, J., Poyo, S., Kiekel, J., Hessling, P., & Vohra, S. (2020). Moving from action to real action: Ideas for creating engaging online learning activities. International Society of Technology in Education Expert Webinar series.

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Dr. Jennifer Courduff, Azusa Pacific University

Dr. Jennifer Courduff is a Professor of Education at Azusa Pacific University where she develops courses and teaches in the Master of Arts: Learning and Technology program. She is an active member of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), and advocates for the needs of special education teachers in several professional learning communities. Her research and presentations focus on technology integration within inclusive learning environments and mobile learning.

Dr. Peter Hessling, North Carolina State University

I’ve been teaching at North Carolina State University for over 25 years, including almost 15 years of teaching online in some form or another. My Ph.D. is in Foundations of Education from UNC Chapel Hill, so I come at technology entirely from the humanities. My research is in the history of education, online teaching and collaboration, and pre-service teacher beliefs. I’ve been on the ISTE TEN leadership team for several years, usually participating heavily in the ISTE TEN Playground. Occasionally, I like to make short class videos using puppets.

Dr. Jean Kiekel, University Of St. Thomas

Dr. Jean Kiekel received her PhD from Kansas State University in Curriculum and Instruction. She is currently the Field Placement Director at the University of St Thomas. She has developed an online master's program in Instructional Technology at the university which will be a track under the C&I Master's degree program at UST. Her current research interests include instructional technology in K-12 classrooms, online learning, and teacher induction,

Dr. Dennis McElroy, Graceland University

Dr. Dennis McElroy is Professor Emeritus from Graceland University in Lamoni, Iowa. He is the 2020-21 ISTE Teacher Education Network PLN President. Dennis is an Apple Educator, technology advocate, and passionate teacher educator. His career has included time serving as a high school science teacher, technology director, Iowa DOE technology consultant, school board member, and university professor. In his free time he is a devoted father and grandfather as well as a gigging musician.

Rachelle Dene Poth, Rivervew Junior Senior High School
ISTE Certified Educator

Rachelle Dene Poth is an edtech consultant, presenter, attorney, author, and teacher. Rachelle teaches Spanish and STEAM: Emerging Technology. Rachelle has Master’s in Instructional Technology. She is an ISTE Certified Educator, past-president of ISTE Teacher Education Network and on the Leadership team of Mobile Learning Network.She received the Making IT Happen Award in 2019. Rachelle is the author of five books, including her most recent True Story: Lessons That One Kid Taught Us and also has a book with ISTE “Chart A New Course: A Guide to Teaching Essential Skills for Tomorrow’s World."

Dr. Mia Kim Williams, University of Wyoming