Web Toolboxes: Free tools Logo

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Links to Web sites that features free tools or downloads that can assist teachers to meet the needs of all students. Some of these tools are common place but can be powerful aids in the classroom Scroll down the page to locate AT centers that have special tools. If you know of other free tools please email me at cwissick@sc.edu. Categories includes: Free Downloads, online tools for reading and writing, eBooks, online tools for mathematics, teacher tools and tutorials.


1 Stop for Free AT

CHECK THIS LIST FIRST for Free Assistive Technology. Alphabetical listing of FREE Assistive Technology applications for education and access.

Free Downloads

URL Address

Descriptions of how Tools can be used by students

Web 2.0 Tools http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Want to start collaborative projects to engage students, check out the Web 2.0 tools that allow for online collaboration. Education in mind, these tools can also be password protected. Some tools require a download but most engage users online.
Readplease http://www.readplease.com/  Readplease, for Windows only, features both a free and for purchase tools that can assist with text-to-speech conversions. The free version once downloaded to the computer can function as a simple word processor or screen reader. Any text can be copied and pasted into the Readplease window. Users can customize the voice, size and color of the text.
Natural Reader http://www.naturalreaders.com/ Natural Readers, for Windows only, can assist with text-to-speech conversions. Text, for example from Bibliomania, can be converted to an MP3 file and save for easy listening later.
Word Talk http://wordtalk.org.uk/
Download this free fully functioning text reader that opens text documents and highlights individual words as it reads available.
Kidskills and Kidtools http://kidtools.missouri.edu/ KidTools are planning and monitoring tools to help children gain control over personal behaviors. The Tool Resources program provides information about the tools for adults. In comparison, KidSkills are planning and organizational tools to help children use learning strategies for success. The Skill Resources program provides information about the tools for adults.
Open Office http://www.openoffice.org Open Office provides a free programs of a word processor, presentation and spreadsheet. Many students have access to the Microsoft Office tools at school but not at home. Now all students and computers can be equipped with word processing, spreadsheet and presentation tools for free. Download for full product that uses open source code.
Word Web http://wordweb.info/free/ WordWeb is a free English thesaurus and dictionary for Windows, and can be used to look up words from within almost any program in just one click. It works off-line, but can also look up words in web references such as the Wikipedia encyclopedia.
C Map http://cmap.ihmc.us/ 
Download a version of a free concept mapping software.
FreeMind http://freemind.sourceforge.net/
Concept mapping graphic organizer from Sourceforge - open source software.
Click N Type http://www.lakefolks.org/cnt/ Click N type is a free downloadable on-screen keyboard for anyone who cannot physically use the keyboard. The program also features word prediction, customizable formats, and Multilingual capabilities.
MacInMind: Spelling Tool http://macinmind.com Master Spell is a free downloadable spelling tool for Mac. Features spelling drill and hangman games.
GIMP http://www.gimp.org/  Gimp stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program is a free open source program for creating images, adding effects, and editing photos. Sophisticated tools for students to create images to enhance Web pages and writing projects.
Concord Consortium http://www.concord.org/  The Concord consortium offers free downloads of software they have developed to support critical thinking in science, mathematics and writing. Titles include Biologica, Molecular Workbench, Dynamica, What if builder, Algebra Interactives.
Free Download Center http://www.freedownloadscenter.com/ Many software titles available for download- Free, shareware and assorted costs. Search for Web Talkster - a Talking Web Browser or IE Speakster and view many educational programs. Not all teacher - tested.

Online Tools

URL Address

Descriptions of how Tools can be used by students

Google http://www.google.com For students who need simple tools to assist with daily tasks what could be easier than using the Google search engine. Students can type in any equation and google becomes a calculator. Need a definition, type in a single word and use the link for the definition, need an image for a mental model, use the image search bank. Check out Print Google for full versions of books online. Seek ideas and lesson plans using Google for Educators.
Answers.Com http://www.answers.com Definitions and Explanations for over one million topics. Check the free downloads at the site and information for Educators.
All Words http://www.allwords.com English dictionary with multilingual search. Pronunciation available. Locate words with the same prefix or suffix.
Bookbuilder http://bookbuilder.cast.org 

CAST supported tool to use and create interactive online books with features of UDL.

Read Write and Think http://www.readwritethink.org/  Interactive online tools to support reading and writing. Tools for student use with lesson ideas to incorporate the tools. Sponsored by IRA and NCTE.
Voycabulary http://www.voycabulary.com Some students need additional assistance with vocabulary even if they can read web pages. Using voycabulary, any web page can be converted to a hyperlinked page. Students can then click on any word and be linked to the definition of that word. The process does take time but will be worthwhile for many students.
Guide to Grammar
and Writing
http://webster.commnet.edu/grammar/ Review and examples to support all questions about grammar and writing. Provides support at the word, sentence, paragraph and essay/research levels.
Confusing Words http://www.confusingwords.com/ Contains a resource of 3210 confusing words and examples of their use. Words are grouped according ot how they are often misused.
Writing Sample Analyzer http://obsidian.sktyler.com/tools/
For students who want to analyze their writing using a Web tool just type or paste up to 5000 characters to receive information on sentences, words, characters, Flesch Reading Ease, Fog Scale Level, and Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level, .
Internet Picture Dictionary http://www.pdictionary.com/ Picture dictionary for English, French, German, Spanish and Italian. Includes activities for flashcards, fill in-the-blank, word scramble.
Imagination Cubed http://www.imaginationcubed.com/
Online drawing program sponsored by GE where you can draw and invite a friend to draw with you.
BabelFish http://world.altavista.com/

Translate any block of text or web page into any language.

Online Books

URL Address

Links to E-books and E-Text

Free access to thousands of e-books, poems, articles, short stories and plays. Combine any of these books with a screen reading tools such as Readplease, WYNN, or eReader to provide accommodations for reading disabilities.
More free access to thousands of e-books, poems, articles, short stories and plays. Combine any of these books with a screen reading tools such as Readplease, WYNN, or eReader to provide accommodations for reading disabilities.
Project Gutenberg http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/
Free access to thousands of e-books, poems, articles, short stories and plays. Combine any of these books with a screen reading tools such as Readplease, WYNN, or eReader to provide accommodations for reading disabilities.
Online Books http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/
Free access to thousands of e-books, poems, articles, short stories and plays. Combine any of these books with a screen reading tools such as Readplease, WYNN, or eReader to provide accommodations for reading disabilities.
Literature Network http://www.online-literature.com/
Free access to thousands of e-books, poems, articles, short stories and plays. Combine any of these books with a screen reading tools such as Readplease, WYNN, or eReader to provide accommodations for reading disabilities.
UVA eText Library http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/ebooks/
Free e-text library for Microsoft Reader and Palm. Over 2,100 publicly-available ebooks from the University of Virginia Library's Etext Center.
Digital Library http://www.childrenslibrary.org/
Access to childrens book with full color images of pages. Not all books are formatted to be read by a screen reader. Site features children friendly search with colors, types and length.
Bookshare http://www.bookshare.org/
Providing access to digital accessible books and periodicals for persons with print disabilities. FREE to schools. Individual subscriptions available.

Tools for Mathematics

URL Address

Description of skills

Virtual Math Manipulatives


An NSF supported project that began in 1999 to develop a library of uniquely interactive, web-based virtual manipulatives or concept tutorials, for mathematics instruction (K-12 emphasis).
Shodor Educational Institute


Interactivate is a collection of interactive software for science and mathematics.


NCTM Interactive activities and lesson plans for k-12 mathematics.
Web Math


Instant help on math problems, input a problem and see step by step directions on solutions.
Talking Calculator http://www.readingmadeez.com/
Download this free fully functioning talking calculator available from Premier Assistive Technology.
All Math http://www.allmath.com Links to mathematical activities, flash cards, terms, biographies and more.
The World of Math Online http://www.math.com Free Calculators and support for a variety of math skills.
Graph Paper http://www.incompetech.com/
Free graph paper and grids in pdf format.
Arcademic Skills Builders http://www.arcademicskillbuilders.com/ Free drill and practice math games that can also be used with a wii.
Motion Net Calculator http://www.motionnet.com/calculator/ Free online expotential calculator
Calculators http://www.freeonlinecalculator.net/ Different styles and types of calculators, all online and all free.
Scratch http://scratch.mit.edu/ Scratch is a new programming language that makes it easy to create your own interactive stories, animations, games, music, and art -- and share your creations on the web. I
have added it under math as if you search for "math" you will locate a number of activities that have already been created.

Student Development Tools

URL Address

Descriptions of Student Products

Notestar http://notestar.4teachers.org/ Online tool to support research and note taking with the Web. Once the teachers creates research groups, students can locate Web sites and take notes in a special window. Notestar will automatically record the web address and the date. After the students complete note taking, notestar supports the next steps to organize ideas.
Project Poster http://poster.4teachers.org/ Online tool that guides students to create a web page. Great idea to assist students in projects and presentations. All web pages are stored on the 4 Teachers site so accessible at home and at school.

Teacher Tools

URL Address

Description of Teacher Creation Tools

4 Teachers http://www.4teachers.org Check out all the wonderful productivity tools such as TrackStar to organize and annotate your web sites for students, Web Worksheet Wizard, PBL Checklist, Rubistar to make rubrics, Casa Notes to send home quick notes. Always something new and useful.
Lessonbuilder http://lessonbuilder.cast.org  CAST supported tool to create lessons incorporating elements of UDL to increase access and participation in the general education classroom.
Intervention Central http://www.interventioncentral.org Tools and strategies for classroom management and curriculum based measurement. Click on Okapi to access the Reading Probe Generator
Tests & Forms http://iteslj.org/Articles/
Get more from MS Word - Directions for making tests using the Forms feature on Word.
Creative Ways http://www.rcps.org/creativeways/
Creative ways for using Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
Discovery School's Teaching Tools http://school.discovery.com/
Links to create puzzles, math squares, word searches, worksheets, and online quizzes. Wonderful free clip art gallery.
Teacher Web Webquests http://www.teacherweb.com Search and then create a WebQuest online. WebQuests are stored on the Teacherweb site and are free to create. Select Teacher tools and scroll down for the link to Webquests.
Lesson Plan Builder
Alfy's free lesson plan builder where you can build, save, print, and post lesson plans.
Tramline Tours http://www.tramline.com/ Tramline tours that features virtual field trips. Free charged for software to create your own, but many field trip with guided links for science and social studies exist.
Education World http://www.educationworld.com Searchable database of over 50,000 sites related to education, curriculum ideas, lesson plans, and hot topics of the week 
In Pictures http://inpics.net FREE tutorials using step-by-step picture guides available for Word, Excel PowerPoint, Publisher, Dreamweaver, and Html/CSS
Toolboxes   Links to additional web sites that contains tutorials and additional teacher tools.
Assistive Technology
Resource Centers
Links to over 15 assistive technology and related resource centers that feature tutorials, information and lessons on the integration of technology.
Thematic Units and Lesson http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to searchable lesson plans and ideas for thematic units online.
Video Tutorials http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to video tutorials on a variety of free technology tools and programs to assist access to the curriculum.
PowerPoint Support http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to PowerPoint activities, tutorials, and game templates.
Language Arts http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to online reading and language arts activities.
Math http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to online activities to practice arithmetic and mathematical skills.
Social Studies http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to online activities to practice a variety of skills related to history and geography
Science http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to online activities and simulations to reinforce science concepts.
Special Education Technology Resources http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Links to vendors for educational software and assistive technology.
Technology Tools for Reading and Writing http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/
Listing of software for reading, writing, voice recognition, and screenreaders.

Web Toolboxes: Main Menu 

1998-2008 University of South Carolina Board of Trustees

URL:    http://www.ed.sc.edu/caw/bio.html
Maintained by Dr. Cheryl A. Wissick,  Associate Professor
Department of Educational Studies, College of Education.

Last updated April, 2012


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