Free Open Source Software (FOSS)

I’ve run across several lists of free open source software (FOSS) in the last few days. I’ve added each to my bookmarks (see My Bookmarks in the main menu) but I wanted to a bit more proactive in sharing this information with teachers, thus the reason for this post.

Free/Open Source Software for Kids – This list was generated for those teaching 3-12 year old students. It suggests FOSS for music composition, painting, space exploration, math, and more.

KDE-Education Program – This group is “developing high-quality educational software for the K Desktop Environment. Our primary focus is on schoolchildren aged 3 to 18, and the specialized user interface needs of young users. However, we also have programs to aid teachers in planning lessons, and others that are of interest to university students and anyone else with a desire to learn!” You’ll find about 30 educational software games/ tools related to math, science, languages, art, keyboarding, and more.

23 Most Valuable Free Software – A list of the most outstanding free/open source software.

GIMP – “The GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a freely distributed piece of software for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring. It works on many operating systems, in many languages.”

Exploratree – Exploratree is a free web resource where you can download, use and make your own interactive thinking guides, concept/semantic maps, organizers, charts, tables, and more.

Firefox – A cross-platform browser, providing support for various versions of Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. However, the source code has been unofficially ported to other operating systems. This project has a large community of external contributors. If you haven’t already switched from Internet Explorer to Firefox (or at least something else) then I strongly suggest that you consider it.

Blender – “Blender is the free open source 3D content creation suite.”

For even more, you can also review my previous notes on other FOSS and TeacherJay’s Free Software Guide.

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Clif Mims is a Christian, husband, father, teacher, cancer warrior, and fan of the Mississippi State Bulldogs and Memphis Grizzlies.

3 thoughts on “Free Open Source Software (FOSS)”

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  2. Interestingly enough, John Seely Brown, author of “The Social Life of Information” has released a podcast via The Chronicle of Higher Education vis-a-vis how the Internet and Web 2.0/online social networking is changing education. Check out his thoughts on “Tinkering 2.0” at:

    As an aside, I got to meet Mr. Brown when he visited my class at Pepperdine. He is a very warm, personable fellow as well as being knowledgeable and on the cutting edge of technological/educational thought.

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