Many of us are using Web 2.0 tools with our students that require an email address. An amazing (to me) number of students do not have their own email addresses which makes account creation more difficult.
One method to alleviate the problem is to create a Gmail account for yourself and then follow the steps below to create “dummy” email accounts for your students. All email to them will come to your account. Obviously, you shouldn’t use your personal account, but create one specifically for this purpose.
Gmail (or Google Mail) is Google’s free web email service with tons of storage space and lots of great features e.g. ability to easy search mail messages, threaded messages, built in chat. Create your gmail account here. I recommend choosing a name that people can identify easily as being you e.g. mine is my name with the s missing from the end of waters.
Educators can use one Gmail account to set up student blogs or sign up for different online services using gmail’s support of plus addressing. How this works is simple! Gmails ignores anything in the first half of an email address after a plus sign so if you create each email with the format email@example.com all emails will be sent to the inbox of firstname.lastname@example.org. You can use both text and numbers in the student names.
This information was taken from Edublogger which is the support site for Edublogs. Edublogs is a wonderful site where you can create student and teacher blogs. They have both a free and a paid version. It is the site I use for this blog.
By PCL-BO [CC-BY-SA-2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons