Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Glide - Make Your Own App by Just Making a Spreadsheet

Glide is an amazing free tool that I featured in a presentation during yesterday's TLA Tech Glamp. Glide enables anyone who can make a spreadsheet in Google Sheets to create his or her own mobile app. If that sounds simple, that's because it is just that simple. The headers that you put into your spreadsheet and the data that you enter into your spreadsheet is used by Glide to generate a mobile app for you that will work on Android and iOS devices.

To get started making your first app with Glide you will need to create a spreadsheet in Google Sheets. Your spreadsheet's column headers are what will become the sections your app. The information that you enter into your spreadsheet's columns is what will be displayed within each section your app. You can include links to videos, images, and maps in your spreadsheet and those items will be included in your app too.

After you have created your spreadsheet in Google Sheets, go to Glideapps.com and connect to your Google account. That connection will allow you to import your Google Sheet. Once your spreadsheet is imported you will be able to see a preview of your app. You can change the layout and color scheme of your app in the Glide editor. When you're happy with how it looks, hit the share button to publish your app for others to see. You can share your app publicly via QR code and public URL or you can share your app privately via email.

Applications for Education
Glide could be a fantastic way to have students create simple study guide apps, to create apps for making guides to their favorite video games, or to build apps about their towns.

Sunday, April 14, 2019

A Few Resources for Learning About Income Taxes

Tomorrow is the deadline to file income taxes in the United States. If you have high school students, some of them may be filing taxes (or having parents do it on their behalf) for the first time. That may lead to all kinds of questions about why we have taxes, the way taxes are calculated, and types of taxes. Crash Course has a twelve and a half minute video in which those questions are addressed.



PBS Learning Media has a free lesson plan through which students learn about reasons for taxes being withheld from paychecks, where the withholdings go, and why some people have more or less withheld than others. In addition to helping students understand taxes withheld from paychecks Taxes - Where Does Your Money Go? introduces students to concepts related to saving for retirements. To that end, the lesson plan includes a video about how a self-employed person handles budgeting for taxes and retirement.

To explain the origins of income taxes in the United States, CBS News hosted author Kenneth Davis. Davis is the author of the popular "Don't Know Much" series of history books.



Pictures of the American Revolution - And Other Resources for Patriots' Day

Tomorrow is Patriots' Day in Maine and Massachusetts. The day commemorates the Battles of Lexington and Concord. As a New Englander this is a good day to review some good resources for teaching and learning about the American Revolution.

History Animated has an entire section called Revolutionary War Animated. That is a great place to find nice animated maps of troop movements throughout the Revolutionary War. Despite looking rather web 1.0, this resource is one that I continue to return to because it does a great job of illustrating the movement of battles. Unfortunately, this resource is no longer online (April, 2020)

America, A Narrative History is a text published by Norton. As a free supplement to the book, Norton offers ten Google Earth tours. These tours include major themes and events in US History. The American Revolution is one of the Google Earth tours included in the list of tours. Unfortunately, this resource is no longer available (April, 2020).

Teaching American History has a series of interactive lessons about the American Revolution that are suitable for middle school and elementary school use. The lessons are divided into three chronological sections; 1775-1778, 1778-1781, and Treaty of Paris 1783. All of the lessons in the first two sections ask students to locate a place on a map. Students then answer a question about that place. After answering the question students are given a short text lesson. The lessons appear in chronological order. In the section on the Treaty of Paris students move through a series of placemarks on a map to learn about the terms of the Treaty of Paris.

Pictures of the Revolutionary War is a compilation of images about the Revolutionary War. The images in the collection chronicle the stirrings of rebellion in the pre-revolution years, the war from both American and British perspectives, and events following the Revolutionary War.

Crash Course has a ten part series on U.S. History. Included in that series is Taxes & Smuggling - Prelude to Revolution.



Saturday, April 13, 2019

Only Seven Seats Left!

The snow is almost gone here in western Maine. It won't be long now until we're breaking out the shorts, tee shirts, and flip flops. As the summer gets closer the Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp is filling up. As of this morning there are only seven seats remaining for this hands-on learning experience. If you have been thinking about registering, now is the time.

In the following video I answer a bunch of FAQs about the 2019 Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp.



Check out this list of things to learn and do at the Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp.

Spring, Winter, and a New Look - The Week in Review

Good morning from Maine where we're hoping the sun comes out today like it did last weekend. Of course, after last weekend's warm weather we woke up to six inches of fresh snow on Monday morning. Wherever you are this weekend, I hope that you can get outside to play too.

This week I decided to start moving Free Technology for Teachers in a slightly different direction. If you only read this in email or in an RSS reader, you may not have noticed that the blog has a new look. There are fewer banner links, fewer advertising banners, larger font, and the header image has a current picture of me instead of one taken in 2011. The cosmetic changes are part of a larger change in how Free Technology for Teachers is funded. I'll be sharing more about that in a forthcoming blog post. In short, there will be more time spent on my consulting and training services.

These were the week's most popular posts:
1. How to Create Video-based Lessons
2. Seven Good Tools for Creating Word Clouds
3. Important Information for Fans of Flippity
4. The Most Dangerous Writing App - Great for Jumpstarting Creative Writing
5. A Great Email Etiquette Lesson from a Student
6. Create Text Message Exchanges Between Fictional and Historical Characters
7. Braingenie - Math & Science Practice from CK-12

Only Seven Seats Left!
The Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp is happening on July 15th and 16th. I've secured a beautiful location for it that offers lots of activities for the whole family within walking distance. Only seven seats are left! Register here!



Register here!

Ten things to learn and do at the Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp