Friday, October 22, 2021

Create a Portfolio With Carrd.co

I often get asked for recommendations for simple website builders that teachers and students can use to create small websites. Google Sites is fine, but the aesthetics still have a long way to go. Services like WordPress and Weebly are great, but have way more menus and options than what's needed for a quick and simple site. Carrd.co is a new service that just might fill the need for an easy-to-use tool to quickly create good-looking, simple websites. 

I gave Carrd.co a try this afternoon. In ten minutes I created a little photography portfolio site that looks way better than anything I could have created with Google Sites or WordPress. Watch this short demo video to see how you can create a portfolio site with Carrd.co.



Applications for Education
Carrd.co could be a good little tool for high school or college students to use to create simple websites to share information about themselves and their work. They can create sites that are useful to have and share when applying for an internship, a scholarship, or a job.

A Helpful New Feature for Formatting Google Docs

Google Docs users who regularly create multiple page documents will be happy to learn that Google is adding a new page break feature to Google Docs. The new page break option will let you insert a page break before any new paragraph. This means that you'll no longer have to manually insert spaces to create a page break. Likewise, your formatting of the page break will be preserved if you have to later add more text or images to a page within your document. 

Applications for Education
This new page break will be welcomed by anyone who uses Google Docs to create long documents like worksheets that incorporate a lot of images, charts, or special text formatting. The new page break option should make it easier to preserve the formatting of pages without having to manually insert or delete spaces.

Google Adds More Audio and Video Controls to Google Meet

This week Google announced a new feature that will be welcomed by any teacher who regularly uses Google Meet to host online classes. That feature is the ability to selectively mute participant audio and video. For quite a while you've been able to mute all participants and turn off their webcams. The new feature prevents participants from unmuting themselves after you've muted them.

Those who have access to breakout rooms in Google Meet will find that the participant audio and video settings will also apply to breakout rooms. 

It should be noted that if your students are joining from an Android device or iOS device, they will need to be updated to the latest version of the Google Meet apps. If they don't use the updated apps, they won't be able to join your meeting if you have the audio and video locks enabled in your call. 

Applications for Education
I can think of at least a few times in the last 18 months that this new feature would have been helpful to me. I've muted students who wanted to interupt and had them unmute themselves. It then became kind of an annoying game of "mute, unmute" that distracted the class.

Like almost all Google Workspace updates, this one will take a couple of weeks to appear in all users' accounts.