Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Easier Data Interpretation and Visualization in Google Sheets

Interpreting data from a spreadsheet can feel a bit overwhelming to a lot of students. That's why I'm excited about Google's latest update to Google Sheets.

Last week Google added a new feature to make data visualization and interpretation easier than ever. Now when you open the Explore feature in Google Sheets you can simply type in a request for a chart to be displayed based on the data in the sheet. You can also make a simple request for something like the mean or median value of a column.

Applications for Education
I often point out in my search strategies webinars that just because spreadsheet data can be hard to interpret that doesn't mean that students should avoid it. Spreadsheet data can give students some valuable insights if they can get to the bottom of it. These new Google Sheets options can help students get a better understanding of the data contained in spreadsheets.

Monday, June 5, 2017

A Convenient New Way to Search for Educational Videos

ClassHook is a free service that can help you find video clips to support your lessons. The clips that you'll find in ClassHook come from well-known television shows and movies. You can find video clips on ClassHook by selecting a topic and browsing through the collection. ClassHook also has a search tool that allows you to enter a term and look for related movie and television show clips.

Recently ClassHook added a new search option to help you find the perfect movie or television clip to use in your lessons. ClassHook's new subsearch filter is an additional refinement tool that you can use when you're looking for a clip. The way that works is that you first enter your general search term like "science" then enter a search for "energy" to further refine your results.

Applications for Education
ClassHook could save you time the next time that you're searching for a video clip to support a point in your lesson plan. It could also be helpful in finding a video to build a flipped lesson upon.

ClassHook uses YouTube as its source of videos. Create a YouTube playlist to organize the clips that you find through ClassHook.

World Population Trends - Interactive Map & Guiding Questions

World Population Trends is an interactive story map series produced on the ESRI platform. Fifteen maps in the series show patterns of change in the world's population from 1960 through 2015. The maps in the series represent population changes due to birth and death rate changes, life expectancy changes, fertility rate changes, and changes in migration.

Applications for Education
World Population Trends includes guiding questions on many of the maps in the series. The questions ask students to evaluate the data in front of them to determine the answers to the questions. For example, the sixth map in the series asks, "What similarities and differences are there between the map for crude birth rates (Map 5) and this map of death rates?"

H/T to Maps Mania

How to Download Your Remind Message History

At about this time last year I published a video that showed you how to download the history of the messages that you sent through Remind. Since then the process has changed slightly. In the new video embedded below I demonstrate how to download your Remind.com message history.

Applications for Education
You might want to download your Remind.com message history to save as a record to show your efforts to reach out to parents to keep them informed of what was happening in your classroom and your school as a whole.

How to Quickly Download Google Drive Files

This is the time of year when some of us may be leaving one school district to head to another. If the one that you're leaving uses G Suite, you probably will want to download the files that are important to you before you lose access to your school-based account. Fortunately, it is easy to download your Google Drive files and place them on your desktop or into another cloud account. My video embedded below shows you how to do that.

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