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Friday, April 24, 2015

How to Use Handwriting in Google Documents

Earlier this week John Stevens tipped me off to using g(Math) to add handwritten responses to Google Forms. This morning John sent me a direct message on Twitter to tell me that you can now use handwriting in Google Documents through the g(Math) Add-on. John wrote out step-by-step directions with screenshots here. I made a short screencast of the process. That screencast is embedded below.


Thanks again to John Stevens for the tip. And thanks to John McGowan for developing g(Math).

How to Cite a Tweet in MLA, APA, and Chicago Style

As social media has evolved it has crept into academic work. I've even given research assignments in which I've asked my students to seek out and cite quotes from people on Twitter. More and more I'm asked, "how do I cite a Tweet?" In fact, I was asked this in an email last night. If you're citing for a blog post, you can just embed the Tweet. If you're citing for a more formal work you will want to follow guidelines of MLA, APA, or Chicago Style.

Guidelines and examples for citing a Tweet in MLA style can be found here. Guidelines and examples for citing Tweets in APA are available here. If you need guidelines and examples of citing a Tweet in Chicago Style, click here.

Those who use tools like EasyBib or RefMe should note that the Tweet citations generated by those tools don't exactly match the guidelines set by APA, MLA, or Chicago Style. I tried both tools for citing Tweets and found that I had to slightly modify the formatting produced by those tools.

How to Embed a Tweet Into a Blog Post

Last night I received an email from someone who had a question about sharing Tweets. She had seen my post about QR codes in which I shared a Tweet that had a picture in it. She wanted to do the same to share on her classroom blog the Tweets that parents and students sent during and about a school event (I think that's a great idea).  The process is rather easy and I demonstrate it in the video embedded below.

Nearly 700 Art History Books to Read Online for Free

Last night on the Free Technology for Teacher Facebook page I posted a set of resources for art lesson plans. That post reminded me of a couple of sources of free art history books that together offer nearly 700 books.

 The Metropolitan Museum of Art hosts 437 art history books online. All of the books can be read online or downloaded as PDFs (warning, some of them are massive files). You can search through the catalog of books by thematic category, format, and publication type. And, of course, you can search through the books by title, author, and keyword.

The Getty Museum has put more than 250 art books online for anyone to read online and or download. You can find all of these books in the Getty Publications Virtual Library. You can search through the collection by author, keyword, or title. Alternatively, you can simply browse the collections. All of the free books are also available on Google Books.

Rethink Your Drink - A CDC Guide to Sugary Beverages

My favorite coffee mug.
Despite the fact that we're still having snow flurries at my house, the outdoor biking season has begun here in Maine. I've set a few goals for myself this season. One of the goals includes a personal best time on a local hill climb (follow me on Strava and you'll figure out which hill).

One of the ways to improve my climbing is by dropping weight. Since I don't have a spare $1,000+ spend on lighter wheels and other bike components, I decided to drop some of the weight from my body. One of the simple ways that I'm doing this is by cutting the sugar from my daily cups of coffee. I put about 1.5 teaspoons of sugar into my coffee three or four times per day which works out to 72-96 calories from sugar.

This sugar reduction quest got me searching for more information about sugar in beverages. One of the first things that I came upon was a PDF from CDC about sugary drinks. Rethink Your Drink provides a chart of sugar content and calories found in popular beverages. The PDF also contains a chart of suggested alternatives to drinking sugary beverages. In addition to the charts Rethink Your Drink provides suggestions on ways to cut sugar calories safely while not sacrificing nutrients.

Applications for Education
The charts in Rethink Your Drink could be good resources to use in a health and fitness class for students. You might combine Rethink Your Drink with these resources on how sugar affects the brain. And for good visuals about sugar, take a look at Sugar Stacks which by using sugar cubes shows how much sugar is in common foods and drinks.

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