Saturday, September 18, 2010

Week in Review - Most Popular Posts

It's Saturday morning in Maine and time for the week in review. I hope everyone had a great week and finds some time to relax and enjoy the weekend. Hopefully, by the time you read this I'll be catching landlocked salmon on Kennebago Lake.

This week, before I write the list of the most popular posts, I want to share some good news related to Free Technology for Teachers. This week I found out that I was named runner-up for ACTEM's Teacher of the Year award. I also found out this week that my column in the School Library Journal will run monthly instead of bimonthly for the foreseeable future. Thank you to everyone who has supported me and this blog by sharing links with others and telling people about Free Technology for Teachers. The opportunities that have come my way through this blog are due in very large part to all of you.

Here are the most popular posts of the last week:
1. Wordia Brings Words to Life in Video
2. Using Facebook to Connect With Students & Parents
3. Do You Google Yourself? Do Your Students?
4. Snappy Words - A Visual Dictionary and Thesaurus
5. Sketchy Explanation: Starting a PLN
6. 5 Tools to Create and Administer Quizzes Online
7. Wild Sanctuary - Sounds of Nature on Google Earth

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3 Tools to Help You Save Paper & Ink in Your Classroom

This year, one of my goals is to make my classroom as paperless as Shelly Blake-Plock's classroom. However, as much as I strive toward that goal, as Michael Scott would remind us, a lot of business is still done on paper. Even if we still have to print items, we don't have to wasteful in our printing habits. Here are three tools that can help you reduce how much paper and ink you use when printing materials for your classroom.

Print What You Like is a simple web tool that lets users select just a portion of a website. This is particularly useful for printing articles from websites or blogs that do not have a "printer friendly" option. Print What You Like is not simply a cropping tool, users can also remove images from the background or foreground of a website before printing.

If you have ever wanted to print an article from a blog or a website, but wish you could do it without printing all of the ads and widgets in the side columns, you should take a look at PrintFriendly. PrintFriendly strips away all of the ads and side bar content allowing you to print only the article on the page. There are two ways to use PrintFriendly. You can copy and paste an article's url into the PrintFriendly homepage or use the PrintFriendly bookmarklet. I tried it both ways and much prefer using the bookmarklet as it doesn't require any toggling between browser tabs or windows. Below is a video overview of PrintFriendly.

Printliminator is a handy little bookmarklet for Firefox, Chrome, and Safari. Printliminator allows you to highlight a webpage and select only the elements which you wish to print. You can install Printliminator in seconds by just clicking and dragging it into your browser's toolbar. Watch the video below to learn more about Printliminator.