Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Anchor Adds New Ways to Craft Podcasts

In the last year Anchor.fm has become my go-to recommendation for easily creating podcasts with students. The web version of Anchor.fm lets you record, edit, and publish podcasts in a matter of minutes. The Anchor mobile apps are even easier to use.

This week Anchor added a couple of new features to their free iOS and Android apps. In addition to recording and publishing, the apps now let you trim the beginning and end of your recording, split your recordings, name segments of recordings, and flag recording segments. Naming and flagging recording segments can make it easier to edit your podcast because you'll be able to easily jump to a flagged segment rather than having to play through your recording to find the segment you need to edit.


Applications for Education
If you have ever wanted to create podcasts with your students, but you got discouraged by the thought of dealing with technical complexity of publishing the podcasts, Anchor.fm is the tool for you. I've never found an easier way to create a podcast than to use Anchor. Click here for ten ideas for classroom podcasts students can produce through Anchor.

How to Quickly Add Page Numbers to Long Google Documents

Since Sunday evening when I published the 2018-19 Practical Ed Tech Handbook I have had a couple of people ask how I added the page numbers to it and kept them straight in Google Docs. The answer is found in a simple, but often overlooked function in the "insert" drop-down menu in Google Docs. Simply open that menu then choose "header & page number" to have page numbers automatically added to the pages of your document. Watch my video that is embedded below to see these steps in action.

A New Way to Add Google Keep Notes to Google Documents

Last year Google added the option to insert your Google Keep notes into your Google Documents. That feature made it easy for students who use Google Keep to bookmark resources while conducting research to then insert those bookmarked resources into their Google Documents.

This week Google changed the way that you can access Google Keep in Google Documents. Previously, you could access your Google Keep notes through the "tools" drop-down menu in Google Docs. Now you can access your Google Keep notes through the side panel located in bottom, right corner of your Google Documents. Watch my new video to see how to access Google Keep through Google Docs.


Learn more about Google Keep in tomorrow's Practical Ed Tech webinar, Get Organized With Google Classroom, Calendar, and Keep

View Upcoming Google Classroom Assignments in Google Docs

A new little side panel option recently appeared in my Google Docs. In fact, it appeared while I was in the middle of a workshop in which I was showcasing some Google Docs add-ons.

The new side panel in Google Docs provides quick access to Google Calendar, Google Keep, and Google Tasks. You can view items from all three services in the right-hand side of your screen while you're working on a Google Document. You can access any and all of your upcoming Google Calendar events, including Google Classroom assignments, while working on a document. Watch my video that is embedded below to see how you can access upcoming Google Classroom assignments through Google Documents.


Learn more about Google Classroom and Google Calendar in tomorrow's Practical Ed Tech webinar, Get Organized With Google Classroom, Calendar, and Keep

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

5 Ideas for Making Multimedia eBooks With Students

For many years Book Creator was my go-to recommendation for teachers who wanted to have their students create multimedia ebooks on iPads. So when the folks at Book Creator launched an online version to use Google Chrome I quickly added it to my list of recommended web tools too. Book Creator can be used by students to create multimedia ebooks that include video, images, audio, text, and free-hand drawings. You can watch an overview of Book Creator here. After getting familiar with Book Creator consider having your students make one of the following types of ebooks.

1. Multimedia Comic Books
Book Creator offers a half-dozen page layout templates including three specifically designed for students who want to make their own comic books. Within those comic templates students will find options for adding speech and thought bubbles, word art, comic stickers, and clip art to the pages of their comic books. They can also add utilize all of the other Book Creator tools like recording audio and inserting videos into the pages of their comic books.

2. Digital Portfolios
Book Creator supports uploading many kinds of media and then adding that media to the pages of an ebook. This can be a great way to have students build digital portfolios of their best work.

3. How-to Guides
Combining text, pictures, and video on the same page can be an excellent way to build a how-to guide for everything from conducting science experiments to tuning a lawn mower's engine.

4. Creative Writing
Students can enhance their creative writing by adding sound effects, mood music, or spoken words to the pages of their Book Creator ebooks. Students can do this by selecting the option to import media into any page of their ebooks.

5. Multimedia Reports
Watching videos and listening to podcasts is increasingly a part of the research that students do when beginning a research assignment. Rather than just writing summaries of the content of those videos or podcasts, students can embed them into the pages of their reports written in Book Creator.

Book Creator is available for individual registration as well as school-wide registration. From now until the end of September Book Creator is offering a great discount on their school-wide package




Disclosure: Book Creator is currently an advertiser on FreeTech4Teachers.com