Saturday, February 1, 2020

The Week in Review - The Most Popular Posts

Good evening from Maine where it was a good day for being outside skiing and playing. It was a great way to spend the first half of the weekend. I hope that you also had a great start to your weekend.

This week I opened registration for the 2020 Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp. Summer might feel like it's a long way off, but it's never too early to start planning your summer travel. I hope that you'll consider coming to Bethel, Maine for a couple of days of hands-on learning in beautiful location.

These were the week's most popular posts:
1. Three Interesting Ways to Use Google Slides Besides Making Presentations
2. Three Neat Things You Can Do With Google Sheets
3. Two Ways to Make Progress Trackers With Google Sheets
4. Quickly Create & Share Transcripts of YouTube Videos
5. How to Remove Image Backgrounds in PowerPoint
6. A Great Set of Videos for Teaching Networking and Computer Hardware Concepts
7. How to Make Timelines With Google Sheets

I'll come to your school in 2020! 
Send me an email at richardbyrne (at) to learn more about how we can work together. This year I'm offering an opportunity to bring me to your school for free! Ask me for details.

Thank You for Your Support!
Other Places to Follow My Work
Besides and the daily email digest, there are other ways to keep up with what I'm publishing. 
  • Practical Ed Tech Newsletter - This comes out once per week (Sunday night/ Monday morning) and includes my tip of the week and a summary of the week's most popular posts from
  • My YouTube Channel - More than 16,000 are subscribed to my YouTube channel for my regular series of tutorial videos including more than 300 Google tools tutorials. 
  • The Practical Ed Tech Podcast is where I answer questions from readers, share news and notes, and occasionally talk to interesting people in education. 
  • Facebook - The Facebook page has nearly 450,000 followers. 
  • Twitter - I've been Tweeting away for the last twelve years at
  • Instagram - this is mostly pictures of my kids, my dogs, my bikes, my skis, and fly fishing.

New Unsplash for Education Collections - Library of Congress, NYPL, NOAA, and More

Unsplash is one of my top recommendations for places to find images that are in the public domain. Last August Unsplash introduced collections intended for educational uses. This week Unsplash added more collections that have great potential for classroom uses.

Earlier this week Unsplash announced the addition of collections of images from the Library of Congress, the New York Public Library, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and a handful of other institutions. Those institutions are the Austrian National Library, McGill Library, Boston Public Library, Birmingham Museums Trust, and Europeana. All of the images in these collections are in the public domain. You can download the images with just one click of the download button that appears on all of the images in the collections.

Applications for Education
Unfortunately, there doesn't appear to be a way to search within the new collections on Unsplash. You have to just scroll through the collections to find images. That said, there is a search function on Unsplash and you will find images from the various collections through that search tool. Either way, it's great to see more historical imagery available through Unsplash.

Think Like a Coder - My Freshmen Love These Videos!

Think Like a Coder is a series that TED-Ed started publishing last September. They're cartoons that present a riddle or puzzle that is solved by using the logic that one would use to create a computer program. The basic premise of the series is that the main characters Ethic and Hedge have to collect artifacts and solve puzzles.

The latest episode of Think Like a Coder was released this week. It's best to watch the series in order, but you can jump into any of the videos you'll still get a little lesson out of it.

As I said in the title, my freshmen in Intro to Computer Science love these videos. I didn't think that they would so I didn't plan to show them. Then last week we had wrapped up for the day and had a little time so I put one on just to see how they'd react, they really liked the first episode and now we've gone through all of them.

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