Saturday, January 30, 2016

The Week in Review - A Week at Home

Good afternoon from sunny Woodstock, Maine where I've had a nice week at home with my dog Max. Max was very happy to have me home for the whole week after being on the road the previous two weeks. Next week I'll be Texas for the TCEA conference and to speak to at Texas A&M. But before then I'm going to soak up some fun with Max as we walk and romp in the woods. Wherever you are this weekend, I hope that you have some time for fun things too.

Here are this week's most popular posts:
1. Choosito - A Search Engine With Reading Level Index
2. 5 Great Things You Can Do With Google Sheets
3. Click to Spin - A Fun and Free Random Name Picker
4. Tour Buckingham Palace In Virtual Reality
5. How to Set a Time Limit on Google Forms
6. How to Create a Classroom Blog on Weebly for Education
7. 5 Videos on Making Flipped Video Lessons

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Friday, January 29, 2016

How to Create a Multiple Part Test in Google Forms

Yesterday, I posted a video in which I demonstrated how to impose a time limit on a Google Form. In response to that post someone on Facebook asked me if there was a way for students to save their progress on a Google Form and come back to finish it later. Unfortunately, there is not an easy way to do that. My suggestion is to break-up long tests into multiple Google Forms. At the end of each Form include a link to the next Form in the series. For example, instead of giving one twenty question Form to students I might give them two Forms containing ten questions each. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to do this.

For more Google tools tutorials, check out my playlist of more than 80 Google tools tutorials.

How to Use Choosito's Reading Level-indexed Search Tool for Free

On Wednesday I published a post about Choosito that spurred a lot of questions in email and comments on Facebook including some not-so-pleasant comments that I deleted. Choosito is a search engine that offers a reading level index for results. You have to register on Choosito even if you just want to use their free product which includes the reading level refinement. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to use Choosito's reading level refinement search options.

Today I Learned - Fun Facts Featured in National Geographic Videos

National Geographic's YouTube channel includes a fun playlist of short videos about interesting science facts. The playlist, called Today I Learned or TIL for short, is comprised of 60 to 90 second videos on things like "why is the ocean salty?" and "how chameleons change color." The playlist is embedded below.

Applications for Education
The videos in Today I Learned aren't long enough to be full flipped lessons, but they could be useful as warm-up material to spark your students' curiosities about a topic.

New Commenting Options in Google Slides, Sheets, Docs Mobile Apps

If you have run updates on your iPad or Android tablet in the last 24 hours you might have noticed some new commenting options in Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets. If you haven't run updates, you will want to after learning about the new commenting features.

Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets for iOS and Android now have instant mentions in comments. Simply start typing a contact's name in a comment box and you will see a list of suggested names to mention in your comments. Anyone you select from that list will be notified of being mentioned in your comment.

One of my favorite features of Google Docs comments is the ability to reply to someone else's comment. Now you can do that in the Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets mobile apps too. And to make it easier to sort through comments all of the Docs, Slides, and Sheets apps have comment swiping enabled.

Applications for Education
The latest updates to the Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets mobile apps bring the experience on a tablet closer to that of using Docs, Slides, and Sheets in your web browser. For schools that have BYOD programs these updates should help streamline your workflow throughout the Google Apps suite.