5 AI Tools for Teachers
You have probably come across the endless lists of artificial intelligence (AI) tools for teachers. If you are like me, a list that includes no explanation of what the tool can do for me is of little use. I know that AI tools have the potential to save time and enhance my teaching practice, but I don’t have the time to research each tool in these long lists. Therefore I have done some of the legwork for you, and in this blog post I will share my five top AI tools for teachers.
These five AI tools are those that I have found to help me the most with my teaching practice. I have found that many of the AI tools currently on the market perform one specific task. Therefore, I have tried to find the tools that give me the most bang for my buck. For example, I have tried several text generator tools and narrowed it down to those that have the most functionality and integrate the best with my daily workflow. I have ordered the list by starting with the quickest option, but all five tools have various entry points in terms of simplicity or not. Some of the tools shared are free, some are a freemium model, and some require a purchase.
Why AI Tools for Teachers?
Before we dive into the what and how of AI tools for teachers, I think it is important to discuss the why. Why should you, as a teacher, take the time to explore and use AI-based tools? For this post's purposes, I want to focus on uses for teachers, not students. There is much debate about using AI with students, so let’s not go there for now!
I have my own list of reasons, but I was curious what an AI chatbot would tell me are the reasons teachers should use AI-based tools. I asked ChatGPT: "Why should teachers try AI tools?" The following reasons were provided (I condensed this into a list with no explanations, although lengthy descriptions of each bullet were provided):
Assist with personalizing learning
Help with data-driven decision making
Create engaging learning experiences
Prepare students for the future
This is quite comprehensive of my “why AI for teachers” list! I echo all of the above and want to add a few points:
Save time and open time to spend with students: I want to emphasize the potential for saving time. A shared sentiment of every teacher is the need for more time. AI tools really can help you save time on those time-sucking, administrative tasks like composing emails, entering grades, and analyzing data. Furthermore, what was not mentioned in ChatGPT’s response is what teachers can do with this additional time: spend more time on student-centered tasks, such as giving immediate feedback, fostering personal connections, and creating engaging learning tasks.
Define the future of AI in education: Everyone has questions about the implications of AI on formal education; currently, there are very few answers. But guess what?
The educators who explore AI now will be the ones who define the future of AI in educational environments.
The new digital divide: If you follow me on socials, you have no doubt seen my posts about AI being the new digital divide. Every time I try a new AI tool, the more this feeling is solidified. The new digital divide will become those that can use AI to save time and create amazing things versus those that can't. Knowing how to efficiently use AI, and where AI can save time, will soon become an integral job skill for you and your students.
Conker by Mote
I mentioned Conker briefly in my blog post FETC and TCEA 2023: EdTech Must-Knows and Must-Try Tools, but I feel it needs to make my top five list too. I am including it first, because if you are looking for the simplest AI tool to begin your AI journey, Conker is your ticket. Conker is created by our friends at Mote, and another bonus is it is free.
Conker creates formative assessments using AI. The assessments can be completed in Conker, exported to Google Forms, or printed.