Showing posts with label remote instruction. Show all posts
Showing posts with label remote instruction. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Video - How to Annotate Your Screen in Google Meet

Last week I wrote a blog post about drawing on or annotating your screen during a Google Meet call. The way to do that is to use a free Chrome extension called Annotate Meet. Annotate Meet lets you draw on top of any tab or window that you share during a Google Meet. What I didn't mention last week is that Annotate Meet will let you save your drawings as image files. So if you were using Annotate Meet to conduct a math lesson you could save all of your work as an image that you then share with your students in Google Classroom. 

In the following video I provide a short demonstration of how to use Annotate Meet. 


Applications for Education
As I wrote last week, Annotate Meet could be useful for providing remote tech support to students. I would use the annotation tool to draw on my screen to show students where they to click on their own screens. Annotate Meet could also be great for drawing on articles to highlight important parts of articles that you share with your students. I'd also consider using it when providing remote editing or feedback to students.

Friday, January 1, 2021

Draw on Your Screen in Google Meet

Annotate Meet is a Chrome extension that lets you draw on your screen during a Google Meet call. A reader named Eli mentioned it to me a couple of weeks ago so I gave it a try. 

Annotate Meet provides you with a small set of tools that you can use to draw or type on your screen while hosting a Google Meet. To use the extension simply start a Google Meet then share your screen. Once you've shared your screen you can click on Annotate Meet in your Chrome extensions menu to access all of the Annotate Meet drawing and typing tools. The drawing tools include a variety of pen/ marker sizes, a customizable color palette, basic text typing tools, and an eraser. You can also clear everything with just one click if you don't want to manually erase. 

After I had it installed I found Annotate Meet easy to use. There is one quirk to be aware of before you start using it. The default color for the drawing tool is black which might not show up all that well depending upon the screen you're sharing. For example, if you screenshare a Google Document the black pen tool might not be enough of a differentiation from the text for your students to notice right away. I changed the color to a darkish orange color and the pen tool was much easier to see.

Applications for Education
Annotate Meet could be useful for providing remote tech support to students. I would use the annotation tool to draw on my screen to show students where they to click on their own screens. Annotate Meet could also be great for drawing on articles to highlight important parts of articles that you share with your students. I'd also consider using it when providing remote editing or feedback to students.

I probably wouldn't use Annotate Meet if I was conducting a full lesson that required drawings and diagrams. Those kinds of lessons I prefer to do a shared Google Jamboard because I can quickly provide students with a copy of Jamboard via Google Classroom whereas annotations on a screen in Google Meet aren't available to students after the meeting ends.



Wednesday, November 18, 2020

A New Google Meet Feature That Brings Order to Class Meetings

Does it ever feel like conducing an online class meeting is an exercise akin to herding cats? Between making sure that every kid can hear you and then making sure that they don't talk over each other or you, managing an online class meeting is challenging. Fortunately, Google has just announced a new feature that should address the problem of students talking over each other or you in Google Meet. 

The latest feature added to Google Meet is a "Raise Hand" function. This function will show students a "raise hand" icon in the bottom row menu during Google Meet events. Students can click that to signal that they have something to say. You could also just use it to have students show agreement with a statement like, "raise your hand if you've heard Mr. Byrne tell this dad joke before." As the teacher or host of a Google Meet you have control to "lower hands" after they've been raised. 

The new hand raising feature in Google Meet is available to some G Suite for Education users beginning today. Other users will see the feature appear in the next couple of weeks. This feature will be on by default for all users. You can read more about how it works right here on the Google Meet help forum.

Saturday, November 14, 2020

How to Improve Audio Playback in Zoom

On Thursday morning one of my colleagues asked me how to improve the quality of the sound when he plays videos in Zoom meetings. Zoom actually has a simple way to do that built right into the screen sharing menu. 

To improve the quality of the audio when playing a video in a Zoom meeting you need to enable the option to share computer sound. By doing that you'll be broadcasting the audio as it comes out of the video instead of broadcasting the audio that is picked up by your external microphone. Making that switch can eliminate some of the echo and distortion that can occur when sharing a video in Zoom. In this short video I give a demonstration of how to change the audio setting when screen sharing in Zoom. 

Friday, October 9, 2020

The Easiest Way to Use Jamboard in Google Meet

A few weeks ago Google announced that Jamboard would be integrated into Google Meet. Earlier this week that finally happened in all of my Google accounts. This makes it easier than ever to use Jamboard in Google Meet. The old method that I used was fine, but the new integration is so much easier. In the following video I demonstrate how to launch and use Jamboard in Google Meet. 




Applications for Education
There are a lot of ways to use this new integration of Jamboard and Google Meet. Here are a few of my initial thoughts about it. First, even if only you use Jamboard during the Meet you can still share the Jamboard afterward with your students. Doing that would give them access to view and review any sketches or diagrams that you shared during the Meet. Second, this new integration could be great for students to participate in collaborative mind-mapping or diagramming sessions. Third, you could use the Jamboard to have students share pictures and then conduct a virtual gallery walk in Meet.

Monday, August 24, 2020

How to Use Nicknames in Google Meet - And Why You Should Try It

One of the best features of Google Meet is one that is front and center at meet.google.com but is often overlooked or misunderstood. That feature is the option to give your meeting a nickname.

Using a meeting nickname in G Suite for Education is an excellent alternative to displaying and using the Google Meet link that is assigned to your Google Classroom. You can choose a nickname in advance and tell your students what that nickname is, but they can't join your meeting until you start the meeting. You can re-use your nickname for multiple meetings.

In the following video I demonstrate and explain how to use nicknames in Google Meet and why you might want to try using them yourself.



On a related note, here's how to use grid view in Google Meet.

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Five Tips for Live Online Instruction

Whether you use Zoom, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams for online class meetings there are some universal things that you can do to make the experience better for you and your students. The following five tips for live online instruction are an excerpt from my recently published 2020-21 Practical Ed Tech Handbook.

Elevate your camera and plug in a mic: 
Besides the obvious, “no one wants to look up your nose” reason, elevating your webcam makes it easier for students to see your eyes during a live meeting. And you should keep your webcam on because students want to see you and make a connection with you and not just your voice whenever it is possible.

If you have one, use an external microphone for your live classes in Zoom, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams. Using an external microphone, especially one with a USB connection will improve the quality of your audio. Even pairing Bluetooth earbuds to your computer can improve the audio quality of your online meeting.

If you're looking to purchase an external microphone, for years I've used and recommended the Snowball iCE microphones made by Blue. For those who would prefer not to have another thing on their desks or are looking for a microphone that works with smartphones, try this lapel microphone.

Share an outline:
Just like you would put a daily agenda on the board in your physical classroom, share an agenda with your students at the start of each online class meeting. It gives students a sense of what to expect during the class and how the meeting will last. Don’t forget to give kids a break during the meeting if you’re going to have them on for more than twenty or thirty minutes.

Assign roles: 
Kids want something to do during a class meeting besides just listening to you drone on. Consider assigning roles like meeting secretary, fact-checker, or even co-moderator in your online meetings.

Silence is okay: 
It’s natural to want to fill every moment of an online class meeting with your voice or your students’ voices. You don’t have to do that. You can give students a task to work on during the meeting then just leave your webcam on and the call going to support them if they have questions while working on the task. Zoom’s breakout rooms function can be useful for this kind of meeting structure.

Announce recordings: 
If you plan to record a meeting, let your students and their parents know at the outset of the class.

Monday, August 17, 2020

Five Current Google Meet Features to Note

Last week Google announced a bunch of additional features that will be coming to Google Meet later this fall. Before those appear in your Google account, here are five other features of Google Meet that you should how to use.

Meeting Nicknames:
This feature allows you to choose a nickname for your meeting in place of using the default code that Google assigns to it. An obvious benefit of using a meeting nickname is that it’s easier to spell, remember, and share than a default meeting code. Another benefit is that you can give out the nickname to your students but they can’t join the meeting until you start it at meetings.google.com Learn more about meeting nicknames and all features of Google Meet in this recorded webinar.

Captions:
You and or your students can turn on captions at any point during a Google Meet session. Simply click the captions button and all spoken words will appear below the camera view in the meeting.

Classroom Link: 
Within the class settings for every Google Classroom there is an option to enable a permanent Google Meet link. That link can be re-used for all meetings held for that class. You can choose to display that link to your students or keep it hidden. Either way, the link is always the same for meetings directly associated with that Classroom. Here's a video that shows you how to use this feature.


Calendar Integration: 
In addition to using the Google Classroom integration and going directly to meet.google.com there is a third option for scheduling meetings. When you create an event in a Google Calendar that you own or have edit access on, you can have Google Calendar create a Google Meet link for you.

Recording: 
Your G Suite for Education domain administrator has to enable the recording option for you. After September 30, 2020 the native recording feature will only be available to G Suite for Education Enterprise Edition users. In other words, after September 30th it will only be available to those who have the paid version of G Suite. A possible work-around for this is to record your calls with a desktop recording tool like Screencast-o-matic or Camtasia.

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

A Great Set of Microsoft Teams Tutorials

I published a bunch of videos about using Google Meet and Zoom this spring. That's because those are the tools that I use the most and I was asked about the most. This afternoon I answered an email from a reader who was looking for help with Microsoft Teams. My recommendation was to check out the videos on Mike Tholfsen's YouTube channel.

Mike is a product manager at Microsoft EDU so he probably knows the products better than just about anyone else who is producing tutorials about Microsoft EDU products including Teams, OneNote, and Immersive Reader.

Here's Mike's tutorial on using Kahoot in Microsoft Teams.



Here's his tutorial on keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft Teams.