Saturday, March 17, 2018

Images, Videos, and Snow - The Week in Review

Good morning from Maine where I've cleared out the snow just in time for another snow storm. We've had 30" of new snow fall in just over a week. As a skier I love the snow. My friends who don't ski are ready for the end of winter. How do you feel about winter? Do you love it or are you counting the days until spring?

This week I hosted a webinar titled 5 Video Projects for Almost Every Classroom. Nearly 100 of you joined that webinar. If you missed it, it's now available on-demand right here.

Here are this week's most popular posts:
1. The Library of Congress Seeks a Teacher-in-Residence
2. Three Free iPad Apps for Creating Animated Movies
3. Why I've Stopped Making My Public Google Docs Printable
4. Newspaper Templates for Google Docs & Word
5. Photos for Class Now Offers More Free Images for Students
6. 1766 Free Lesson Plans for Art Teachers
7. 5 Video Projects for Almost Every Classroom

Book Me for Your Conference
I’ve given keynotes at conferences from Australia to Alaska for groups of all sizes from 50 to 2,000+. My keynotes focus on providing teachers and school administrators with practical ways to use technology to create better learning experiences for all students. I like to shine the light on others and so I often share examples of great work done by others as well as my own. Click here to book me today.

On-demand Professional Development is where I offer on-demand professional development courses and webinars. The sale of those courses and webinars helps to keep Free Technology for Teachers running. Click here to see all of the on-demand offerings. 

Please visit the official advertisers that help keep this blog going.
Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
Storyboard That is my go-to tool for creating storyboards.
MySimpleShow offers a great way to create animated videos for free.
University of Maryland Baltimore County offers a great program on instructional design.
Discovery Education & Wilkes University offer online courses for earning Master's degrees in Instructional Media.
PrepFactory offers a great place for students to prepare for SAT and ACT tests.
Boise State University offers a 100% online program in educational technology.
QuickKey provides an efficient way to conduct online and in-person formative assessments.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Now You Can Add a Custom Favicon to Your Google Site

Now that Google is allowing you to embed third-party content into your Google Site, it's time to update your site with a custom favicon. The favicon is that little icon that appears in your browser tab next to the title of a website. This week Google announced that you can now customize your site's favicon. Directions for adding a custom favicon can be found here. If you don't see the feature right now, you will see it within the next couple of weeks.

Applications for Education
By no means is this a significant update to Google Sites. But it is a nice update for students who are using Google Sites as digital portfolios. It gives them another way to customize their sites to make them stand out from the crowd.

Learn more about Google Sites in my online course, G Suite for Teachers.

How to Add an Image Search Box to Google Sites

Late last year Google started to allow you to embed content and widgets from third parties into your Google Sites. One of the things that you might consider adding to your classroom or library Google Site is the Photos for Class image search tool. Adding that search tool to your site will make it easy for your students to quickly find Creative Commons licensed and public domain images to use in their projects. Watch my new video to see how you can embed the Photos for Class search tool into your Google Site.

Disclosure: Photos for Class is owned by the same company that owns Storyboard That which is an advertiser on this blog. 

Write Notes and Save Bookmarks to Sync With Google Docs & Slides

This morning I was browsing Product Hunt when I saw someone pitching a Chrome extension that promised to let you write notes while browsing the web and save those notes to Google Drive. As I read the description I thought to myself, "that's what Google Keep does."

The Google Keep Chrome extension will let you bookmark websites and take notes about the site you're bookmarking at the same time. You can also use the Google Keep Chrome extension to highlight text on a page then right-click to save it as a note along with a bookmark. All of your notes and bookmarks will sync with your Google account. Once those notes and bookmarks are synced you can access them from the "tools" drop-down menu in Google Docs and Google Slides.

Google Keep can be included in your G Suite for Education account. That's why my G Suite for Teachers course now includes detailed instructions on how to use it.

Echoes of the Great War - Online WWI Exhibition

Echoes of the Great War is a fantastic collection of videos, audio recordings, and pictures about WWI. This online exhibition created by the Library of Congress.

Echoes of the Great War is arranged thematically. Those four themes are Arguing Over War, Over Here, Over There, and World Overturned. Within each of those themes you will find galleries of visual and audio artifacts. You can also skip directly to the video and audio gallery. The exhibition also includes a timeline of WWI. Some images with links to more information are included in the timeline.

Applications for Education
Years ago I used some of artifacts that are now in the exhibition to help students understand how print media influences perceptions. I printed some of the artifacts that are in the Arguing Over War theme and distributed them to my students. They then had to find classmates who had artifacts that supported the same position as the one that they had been given. Finally, based only on the artifacts at their disposal, they had to make a case for or against U.S. involvement in WWI.