Thursday, April 25, 2019

This is a Copyright Infringement

If you have been following my blog for more than a few months, you're probably already familiar with my ongoing battle against copyright infringers all around the world. I recently took the step to truncate all of my RSS feeds which has helped in substantially cutting down on the number of sites publishing my work without permission. There are still some sites that feel it is okay to copy and paste my entire blog posts and then just add "source: Free Technology for Teachers" at the end. That's like a student copying an entire Wikipedia article into a document and passing it in as an essay with a one-item bibliography listing Wikipedia. No teacher would accept that essay and no blogger should accept similar behavior from a website. That's why I made the following video to explain the problem, how to properly re-use a person's work, and to call out the latest website to steal my work.


Learn more about copyright issues as they relate to education and blogging in this 2017 post in which I included the recording of a webinar that Beth Holland and I hosted on the topic.

ReadWorks Offers a Split Screen to Help Students Complete Assignments

ReadWorks is a free service that provides high-quality articles and lesson plans for K-12 ELA teachers. Every article on ReadWorks is accompanied by a lexile score and a suggested grade level. Any article that you select will also be accompanied by a list of key vocabulary terms and suggested questions to give to your students.

ReadWorks offers you the option to create an online classroom by either importing your Google Classroom roster or by manually entering students' names. Either option will give you the ability to assign articles and questions to your students. Students then sign-in to read their assigned articles and answer questions. A relatively new-to-me option provides students with the ability to split their screens in ReadWorks in order to have the questions and articles appear side-by-side. Watch my new video to see how that works.

Newlearn.io - Search and Share Resources by Standard

Newlearn.io is a free social network for finding and sharing free teaching materials according to Common Core standard or keyword. Resoures that you find through Newlearn.io list the standards that can be addressed as well as some suggestions for using through resources in your classroom. You will find videos, PDFs, PowerPoint presentations, and Word Documents on Newlearn.io.

Newlearn.io uses a clean and simple user interface. When you first go to the site you will be greeted by a grid of recently shared resources. On that same page you can begin searching for resources by entering a keyword or by entering a Common Core standard. Search results are displayed in a grid format with large previews of each resource. You will have to create a free account on Newlearn.io in order to download or save any resources.

You can register for a free Newlearn.io account by using any verifiable email address. Once you have registered you will be able to bookmark and download resources. Depending upon the restrictions that a contributor to Newlearn.io sets for his or resources, you may have to send a friend request before you can access his or her resources. You can add your own resources to Newlearn.io by going to your account contents page and clicking on the add button to upload resources, write descriptions of your resources, and to link to external resources.


Applications for Education
Newlearn.io could become a great place to find new instructional materials according to Common Core standard. I kind of look at like if Teachers Pay Teachers without the selling and with an easy way to find resources according to standards.

Disclosure: Newlearn.io is currently running a banner advertisement on the homepage of FreeTech4teachers.com

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

A New Way to Access Google Slides, Docs, and Sheets Offline

Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets have had an offline mode for many years. Enabling offline access for those tools takes just a minute (watch this video to learn how).Today, Google announced some forthcoming updates for the offline modes for Docs, Slides, and Sheets.

Over the next few weeks you will start to see a new way to enable offline access for your Docs, Slides, and Sheets. That new way is to right-click on a file name in your Google Drive and then select "available offline." The updated offline mode will let you edit and comment on Docs, Slides, and Sheets. You can also create new Docs, Slides, and Sheets while offline. The updated offline mode will also provide you with an "offline preview" of your Docs, Slides, and Sheets before you commit to making it available offline. If you work on your Docs, Slides, or Sheets while offline, the changes will be automatically synchronized when you reconnect to the Internet.

Applications for Education
Offline access for Docs, Slides, and Sheets is excellent for students who have been issued Chromebooks by their schools, but don't have a reliable Internet connection at home. It is important to note that administrators can make offline access the default setting for Chromebooks within their organizations.

Only Six Seats Left!

The snow is 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 six 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.