Tuesday, December 17, 2019

How to Disable and Remove Chrome Extensions - And Why You Should

I try a ton of Chrome extensions every year. In fact, I try so many that I sometimes look in my Chrome settings and wonder, "why do I still have that extension?" That's not a good habit because I really should be uninstalling the ones that I don't need. You should do the same.

The reason that we should uninstall the Chrome extensions that we don't need is that doing so removes the opportunity for a long forgotten extension to either slow the browser or have a security vulnerability or both.

In the following video I demonstrate how to disable and remove Chrome extensions.

The History of Comic Art

The Library of Congress currently has an exhibit on display called Comic Art - 120 Years of Panels and Pages. The exhibit is both a physical exhibit and an online exhibit.

Comic Art - 120 Years of Panels and Pages has five sections. Those sections are Early Years, Mid-Twentieth Century, Late Twentieth Century, Web Comics, and Comic Books and Beyond! Each section has a small collection of comics on display. Each item on display is accompanied by short explanations of what is displayed and why it is noteworthy.

Applications for Education
What I find interesting about this exhibit is the evolution of comics from the late 19th Century through the early 21st Century. The evolution of comics could make for an interesting investigation into changes in the art form as well as changes in audience perception of comics.

Perhaps it's the history teacher in me, but I actually enjoyed the early comics more than the modern examples. Speaking of history, last fall the National Archives hosted a webinar about teaching with political cartoons. That webinar recording is available here.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Need Some Classroom Blog Ideas? Try These Edublogs Resources

For years Edublogs has hosted a list of active classroom blogs. The purpose of the list to offer a place for teachers to find examples of classroom blogs and potentially find blogging buddies for their students. Anyone who has an active classroom blog can add their blog to the list regardless of whether or not the blog is on the Edublogs platform. Edublogs recently published the updated version of the list so take a look and see if anything inspires you to blog with your students.

Edublogs also offers a list of fifty blog post ideas for students. Saying that the list has 50 prompts is a bit misleading, but misleading in a good way. Buried within the list of prompts are links to additional sources of writing prompts including this New York Times list of more than 1,000 writing prompts. Between the 50 prompts that Edublogs provides and the additional links, you will have plenty of things for your students to blog about for the rest of the year. Click here to view Edublogs' 50 Blog Post Ideas for Students. You can even download the list as a PDF right here.

And here's my list of five things that you can do to enhance your blog.

White Christmas Probability Map

My daughters are excited about Christmas being just nine days away. They were also a little sad that all of the snow melted over the weekend. Fortunately, the odds are in our favor that we will have snow on the ground again before Christmas. I know that from experience and from consulting NOAA's Probability of a White Christmas map.

NOAA's Probability of a White Christmas map is one of many maps that NOAA offers in their public ERSI map gallery. The White Christmas map depicts the probability of snow being on the ground in the continental United States on Christmas day. The map is covered in small tiles that you can click on to see what the chances are of having a white Christmas in any location in the continental U.S. The map is based on historical snowfall data for each place depicted on the map.

Applications for Education
This map is just one of dozens that you can find in NOAA's public map gallery. Many of the maps that are based on historical data could be good to reference as studies in recognizing patterns.

H/T to Maps Mania.

How to Find and Install Google Slides Add-ons

Google Slides on its own has some great features in it. For some examples see Tony Vincent's recent webinar on how to use the drawing tools that are built into Google Slides. You can add even more features to Google Slides when you install Google Slides add-ons. Five of my favorite add-ons are featured here. But before you can use any add-ons you have to know how to install them and manage them once they are installed. Fortunately, the process of finding add-ons and adding them to your Google Slides account is quick and easy.

In the following video I demonstrate how to find, install, and manage Google Slides add-ons.

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