Saturday, July 6, 2019

Gmail, Name Pickers, and Forms - The Week in Review

Good evening from hot and humid Paris, Maine. The first week of July has been a busy one as I wrapped-up a couple of online courses and worked on some of the final elements for the Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp (there is still time to register). And, as it is now summer, I took my girls to play at the lake a few times too. I hope that those of you who are also in the northern hemisphere are having a great summer too.

These were the week's most popular posts:
1. 5 Helpful Gmail Features for Teachers
2. Seven Google Product Updates Made in June for Teachers to Note
3. Quillionz - Get Quiz Questions Automatically Generated From Documents
4. My Ten Most Watched How-to Videos
5. Create Your Own Mobile-friendly Random Name Picker
6. Google Forms Now Has a Native Function to Import Questions from Other Forms
7. How to Quickly Copy Questions Between Google Forms

Practical Ed Tech Newsletter
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Mapping Books

Yesterday I published a post about creating multimedia timelines as an alternative form of a book report. Later in the day I was walked past the little book store next to my favorite coffee shop and saw a copy of Louise Dickinson Rich's book, We Took to the Woods. This is a classic in the catalog of Maine literature.

We Took to the Woods is the story of Rich and her husband moving to small cabin in along the Rapid River in western Maine in the 1930's. Throughout the book Rich explains the difficulty and, occasionally, the fun of creating a life in woods long before the days of going on Amazon and having anything you need show up at your door the next day. Some of my favorite parts of her story include traveling to and from their home.

Seeing We Took to the Woods in the window of the book store got me to thinking about how creating a multimedia map could be a good way for students to summarize books like it that have a heavy emphasis on location. StoryMap JS is a free tool that students can use to create a multimedia map combined with a timeline. Students could use this tool to explain the significance of locations while also highlighting the sequence of key events in the story. The following video provides a demonstration of how to use StoryMap JS.

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