Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Week in Review - The Most Popular Posts

Good morning from Maine where it is snowing. No, that's not an April Fool's joke. It really is snowing. The weather forecast calls for ten inches of snow. There's nothing to do but put on snowshoes and take the dogs for a walk. Which is what I'll do right after publishing the list of this week's most popular posts.

Here are this week's most popular posts:
1. How to Add Spoken Audio to Google Slides
2. How to Add Interactive End Screens to YouTube Videos
3. How to Create Short Answer Activities in Socrative
4. Create and Track ACT & SAT Prep Activities in PrepFactory
5. Use Socrative to Create Quiz Games That Accept Short Answers
6. Kupiter - Asteroids Meets Review Game
7. Video Tips With Isla

Join me on Tuesday afternoons in April for a series of professional development webinars

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.
QuickKey saves teachers tons of time when scoring formative assessments.
WriteReader is a fantastic multimedia writing tool for elementary school students.
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.
My Simpleshow provides a great way to create explanatory videos.

7 Google Product Updates You Might Have Missed in March

It can be hard to keep up with all of the changes and updates that Google makes to the products that have become an integral part of many teachers' lives. Some of the changes are minor and insignificant to the average end-user while others are significant to a larger portion of end-users. Here are some of the more significant Google product updates that you might have missed in March.

1. Google Keep is now a core product in G Suite. This means that you can now import your Google Keep bookmarks and notes into Google Documents. Watch my video to learn how to import Google Keep notes into Google Docs. 

2. Google Calendar is now optimized for iPads. This is convenient for teachers whose primary classroom device is an iPad. 

3. Google Maps now has Street View imagery of volcanoes and villages in Vanuatu. This adds to the ever-growing list of neat places that students can see in fine detail that we never could see as students in geography classes. 

4. Google Docs has a convenient, new formatting option. It's now easier to insert blocks of all-caps text. A new automatic headline formatting option has also been added to Google Docs. See more here.

5. Team Drives are now available to all schools using G Suite for Education. Rather than just sharing a single file or folder, Team Drives will give everyone in the team access to everything in the Team Drive by default.

6. Google Classroom is now available to anyone who has a Gmail address...kind of. Anyone who has a Gmail address can join a Google Classroom classroom provided that he or she has been given the classroom code. Gmail users cannot yet create their own classrooms in Google Classroom, but that option appears to be coming soon.

7. And in the "definitely not free and probably destined to flop" category, you can now buy Jamboard for $5000 plus an annual fee of $600. I can think of many better ways to allocate $5600 of your technology budget.

33 Lessons on Critical Thinking

From analyzing a persuasive essay to dissecting research findings to determining the cause of an outcome in a science lab, having sharp critical thinking skills serves students well. Wireless Philosophy has a series of 33 video lessons about critical thinking. The most recent lesson explains the difference between causation and correlation.

Take a look at these 7 great tools for creating flipped lessons with these videos.

PD Webinar - Google Forms & Sheets for Beginners

Google Forms and Sheets can complete all kinds of tasks for you, if you know how to use them. Once you’ve learned the basics of Google Forms and Google Sheets you will be amazed at how these powerful tools can streamline processes for you. Those streamlined processes can free up lots of time for you to spend on the fun aspects of teaching.

In this webinar you will everything you need to know to get started using Google Forms and Google Sheets to streamline your workflow in grading quizzes, emailing parents and students, and keeping track of classroom materials. You will also learn how to build self-guided video review activities for your students. Finally, we’ll tackle any questions that you have about Google Forms and Google Sheets.

This webinar will be held live at 4pm Eastern Time on April 4th. Register here. A recording of the webinar will be available to those who cannot attend the live session.

In this webinar you will learn:
1. Two ways to create self-grading quizzes.
2. How to create self-paced guided video review activities.
3. Simple methods to streamline emailing personalized updates to parents and students.
4. How to easily keep track of classroom materials through the use of Forms and Sheets.
5. Methods for creating and managing activity registration forms.

This webinar will be held live on April 4th at 4pm EST. 

Please check here other live webinars.

Richard, why isn't this webinar free? I explained the answer in this video