Monday, December 29, 2014

Teachit Timer - A Slick Classroom Activity Timer

As I do every year, I am taking this week to relax, recharge, and ski with friends. While I'm away I will be re-running the most popular posts of the year. This was the most popular post in January, 2014.

I've tried a bunch of online timers in the past. Until now Online-Stopwatch.com was my favorite. Yesterday, Peter Vogel introduced me to an online timer that will be my go-to timer from here on. The Teachit Timer is a free online timer that allows you display a countdown timer and a count-up timer on the same screen. The Teachit Timer also allows you to choose an alarm sound.

Applications for Education
Whenever I have long blocks of instructional time I like to break it up with short breaks and or timed hands-on activities. One tool that can help to prevent the students and me from stretching the "break times" is to use a countdown timer like Teachit Timer.

How to Use Google Slides to Organize Research

As I do every year, I am taking this week to relax, recharge, and ski with friends. While I'm away I will be re-running the most popular posts of the year.

Like many of you, when I was in middle school and high school I was taught to create index cards to organize our research. After creating the cards we sorted them into an order to support writing our research papers. That same concept can be applied to organizing research with Google Slides. In the video below I demonstrate how this is done.

Group Reading With Google Docs

As I do every year, I am taking this week to relax, recharge, and ski with friends. While I'm away I will be re-running the most popular posts of the year.

Using the commenting feature of Google Documents is a good way to create a record of classroom conversations about an article that you have shared with your students. Using the commenting feature is also a good way to have the conversation about an article occur entirely online. In the video below I give a demonstration of how to do this.

How to Add Fonts to Google Documents & Slides

As I do every year, I am taking this week to relax, recharge, and ski with friends. While I'm away I will be re-running the most popular posts of the year. 

Earlier today I posted the picture you see to the left on my Google+ page with the comment "I decided to play with some new fonts found in Google Drive." A couple of people asked how I added new fonts.

To access and add custom fonts to your Google Drive Documents and Slides select "add fonts" from the bottom of the font selection menu that you've always used in Google Drive. Selecting "add fonts" will open up a new menu in which you can mix and match fonts to your heart's content. The screenshots below provide visual directions.
Click image to view full size. 
Click image to view full size. 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

By Request - A Comparison of 5 Tools for Building Classroom Websites

Well it appears that my series of charts comparing ed tech tools is catching on because today I received my first suggestion for a chart topic. The suggestion was for a comparison of website creation tools. In the chart below I compare five popular tools for building classroom websites. You'll notice that the last column of the chart contains links to tutorials on how to use each service. You can find a Google Docs copy of the chart here or download it through the Box.com widget embedded below.