Sound Gecko is a free service that turns text articles into MP3 files. Using Sound Gecko you can take an article from a website, paste its URL into Sound Gecko, and then listen to a reading of that article. The conversion isn’t instantaneous, but it is relatively quick. You do have to enter an email address in order to get the MP3 file. To remove the copy and paste part of the process you can install the Sound Gecko Chrome extension.
Sound Gecko does offer an iPhone app that you can use to organize and listen to playlists of the articles you’ve converted into MP3 recordings.
Applications for Education
Sound Gecko could be a great tool to use to create audio recordings that you can use in your classroom to support emerging readers. You could print an article and convert it to MP3 then have students follow along while listening to the narration.
Sound Gecko reminded me a bit of Vocalyze which you might also be interested in trying.
H/T to Life Hacker.