Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Customizing Fonts and Emojis in Google Docs

By default every document that you create in Google Docs will have 11 point Arial font unless you change it. You can change that to one of more than 450 font options. To access and add custom fonts to your Google 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. 

Just because you've changed the font for one document that doesn't mean it will automatically apply to the next document that you create. That can be done by changing the default font. This video shows you how to change the default font in Google Docs.

And just for fun, Google Docs makes it easy to insert emojis into your documents. Here's a video on how to do that.

New Themes and Drag & Drop Organization for Google Classroom

Earlier today Google unveiled a couple of new features for Google Classroom. First, you can now rearrange the order of assignments and materials in your Classwork page by simply dragging and dropping them into a new order. Second, Google Classroom now has 78 more color scheme themes that you can apply to your Classrooms.

Speaking of Google Classroom Classwork pages, here's a demonstration of how to add a materials section to your Google Classroom.

Doodle 4 Google 2019

Another year, another Doodle 4 Google contest. This year's Doodle 4 Google is the eleventh in a row. The theme of this year's Doodle4 Google art contest is "when I grow up, I hope..."

The contest is open to students in Kindergarten through 12th grade in the United States. To enter the contest students should create a drawing that represents something that inspires them. The drawing, of course, must include the word Google somewhere within it. The artwork must be submitted on this official entry form.

This year's national Doodle 4 Google winner will receive a $30,000 college scholarship and a $50,000 technology prize package for his or her school.

If you're thinking about using some classroom time to have your students draw for the Doodle 4 Google contest, take a look at the free lesson resources that Google offers. Making drawings for the Doodle 4 Google contest might also be a good indoor recess activity during the cold days we're having here in New England.

Two of this year's celebrity judges are Jimmy Fallon and Kermit the Frog. Here they are to introduce the Doodle 4 Google contest.

A New Way to Add Drawings to Google Docs

It's the first full week of the year and Google has already added new features to G Suite for Education. Yesterday, Google's G Suite Updates Blog carried the announcement that we'll soon have a new way to add drawings to Google Documents.

Google Docs has long given you the option to launch a new drawing screen from the Insert menu in Docs. Now in Docs you will also be able to insert an existing drawing from their Google Drive accounts. This means that instead of having to create a drawing from scratch in your Document, you can use on that you have created directly in Google Drawings.

Applications for Education
Creating mind maps is one of the many things that students can do with Google Drawings. The new Drawings insert option in Docs will make it easier than ever for students to add their mind maps to Documents.

Watch this video to learn how to make a mind map in Google Drawings. And watch this video for a handful of other uses for Google Drawings.

The new "insert drawing" option in Google Docs will be appearing over the next couple of weeks.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Sun, Moon, and Planets 101

National Geographic's YouTube channel has an excellent playlist that is titled National Geographic 101. As you might guess, the playlist is full of short overviews of the basics of a wide variety of topics in science and geography. In National Geographic 101 you will find short videos about Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, Earth, Mercury, Mars, Pluto, the sun, and the moon (actually, there are two videos about the moon in the playlist).

The length and content of these videos make them good candidates for inclusion in EDpuzzle lessons.

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