Monday, December 17, 2018

How to Use a Spreadsheet to Create a Map

Last week when I posted about Google closing Fusion Tables I mentioned that some of the functions of Fusion Tables can be replicated in Google Sheets. An example of that is creating a map based on the data in a Google Sheet. Google's My Maps tool lets you import a Google Sheet and have the data from that sheet displayed as placemarkers on an interactive map. Watch this video that I created to learn how you can create a map based on data in a Google Sheet.

A Quick Tip About Changing Font Sizes in Google Docs

When it comes to formatting your documents Google Docs provides plenty of options. Some of those options are obvious and some are hidden deep in the menus of Google Docs. Here's one that falls somewhere in between those ends of the spectrum. When you're choosing a size for the font in your document, you don't have to use the sizes that are listed in the drop-down menu. You can enter any size that you want to use. As you can see in my one minute video, you can even use odd numbers for your font size.

And if you're wondering how to change the default font style in Google Docs, watch this short video.

Learn much more about Google Docs in my online course Getting Going With G Suite.

Kids World Atlas - An iPad App for Learning About Animals Around the World

Last week I wrote a review of the Kids U.S. Atlas iPad app. That app offers an interactive map of the United States that kids can tap on to learn about 25 animals that are indigenous to the United States. Kids World Atlas is the companion app to the Kids U.S. Atlas. Kids World Atlas uses the same format as Kids U.S. Atlas.

Kids World Atlas features a map of the world that students can tap on to learn about forty animals around the world. Students simply tap an animal on the map and new window pops-up with a picture of that animal and brief text passage about it. The app has videos about some of the animals on the map. Unfortunately, unlike Kids U.S. Atlas, Kids World Atlas doesn't offer narration of the text passages.

Like the Kids US Atlas app, the Kids World Atlas app is a freemium app. The animal map is free. There are other maps available through in-app purchases at $1.99 a piece.

Applications for Education
Just like the Kids US Atlas app the Kids World Atlas iPad app to learn some basic facts about animals. A follow-up activity to students exploring the app would be to have them chose a favorite animal on the map and then research the characteristics of that animal that make it suited to its habitat.

21 Places to Find Media for Classroom Projects

Yesterday, people who subscribe to the Practical Ed Tech newsletter received a copy of my guide to finding copyright-friendly media for use in classroom projects. The guide includes explanations of Public Domain, Creative Commons, and Fair Use. In the section on using self-created media I included an example of how I unintentionally committed a copyright violation when making a screencast video a few years ago. Finally, the guide includes 21 places to find copyright-friendly media to use in classroom projects. You can access the guide here as a Google Doc or here as a PDF.

Some of the resources featured in this guide are integral to my upcoming course Video Projects for Every Classroom.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Trash, Math, and Expeditions - The Week in Review

Good evening from Maine where it was a balmy 43F today. It was a perfect day for a hike in western Maine. There's something about the fresh air that invigorates my body and mind. A walk in the woods almost always inspires new blog post ideas in my mind. Today, was not an exception to that pattern. Look for an exciting new guide to download in PDF format next week.

This week I hosted the fourth session of my Teaching History With Technology course. I offered the course twice this fall because of demand for it. I'm also going to be offering it in January along with two other professional development courses. You can learn more about them here.

These were the week's most popular posts:
1. 250 Google Tools Tutorials for Teachers
2. Reminder - Empty Your Google Drive Trash Bin
3. Speakd - Listen to Your Google Docs
4. Math is Visual - Videos Demonstrations and Illustrations
5. Try Pexels Videos to Find Green Screen Backgrounds
6. Free Math Lesson Plans from NASA
7. Introduction to Using Google Expeditions in Your Classroom

Three Online PD Courses Starting in January
I'm offering three professional development courses to start 2019. Discounted early registration is now open for:
Book Me for Your Conference
I’ve given keynotes at conferences from Australia to Alaska for groups of all sizes from 50 to 2,000+. My keynotes focus on providing teachers and school administrators with practical ways to use technology to create better learning experiences for all students. I like to shine the light on others and so I often share examples of great work done by others as well as my own. Send an email to richardbyrne (at) book me today.

Please visit the official advertisers that help keep this blog going.
Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
TypingClub offers more than 600 typing lessons for kids.
Storyboard That is my go-to tool for creating storyboards.
University of Maryland Baltimore County offers a great program on instructional design.

Seterra offers a huge selection of geography games for students.