Classtools.net is an amazing site created by History teacher Russel Tarr. There are simple tools like Random Name Selectors to more advanced like a Fakebook page, or fake tweets or fake text messages. The "Fake" tools could be used to create conversations between characters in a book or historical figures.
Random Name Selectors
Ever find yourself selecting the same students when having class discussions, choosing groups, or assigning tasks? Well the three tools I have linked below all help with these issues. They are interactive and quick tools to help you select students for various activities.
Additional Application: We want all students to participate and demonstrate their level of understanding. We also have a finite amount of time for discussions and instruction. A method I used is to put the main questions on the board and then use the Random Name selector to choose 3 students per question. I tell them these 3 students are responsible for answering the question. Student 1 responds and 2 and 3 add details to help pull it together to make a complete answer. If they have an incomplete response, then the rest of the class will be called upon. This gives the students lead time to think about their assigned question. This is just one method of pulling students into discussions that can be utilized.
Random Name Wheel With this tool, you can edit the names on the wheel and save your finished product. It creates a unique URL that you should copy and paste into a Google Doc or Google Spreadsheet to have easy access. You could also add the URL to your bookmarks bar to be able to access right from Chrome without having to open a file.
Random Name Picker This is a quick name selector that you could copy and paste your class list into and it will select a random student. This does not create a saved version of your list, unlike the wheel example above. You would have to enter names each time you wanted to use this.
Random Name Selector - This version allows you to add your class list as the others, and like the first one allows you to save your updated class list with a url. You can also change the time the selector uses to choose the next name and determine if you want a choice removed during this session. It will not delete from the original list, but prevents repeat picks.