Friday, September 4, 2020

Google Adds More Teacher Controls for Google Meet - Yay!

In terms of meeting controls Google Meet has lagged behind Zoom all year. Google is making efforts to close that gap. Last month they introduced some new controls and yesterday they introduced another control option for teachers.

The latest control option added to Google Meet lets teachers specify whether or not students can share their screens and whether or not students can use the chat function in a Google Meet. The default will still be that students can share their screens, but you'll now be able to disable that option at the start of your Google Meet events. When you choose to disable sharing for students they won't even seen the option to share their screens.

If you choose to use the new option to disable chat for students in Google Meet meetings they will still be able to see messages that you send. So you'll still be able to post links in the chat for your students to click. They won't be able to reply your chat messages.

Important Caveats!

  • The new Google Meet controls for teachers will be rolling out over the next couple of weeks.
  • These controls will only be available to G Suite for Education users using the web version of Google Meet and not in the mobile app version of Google Meet. 
  • Google warns that if you are using third-party Chrome extensions to modify Google Meet (the breakout room extension, for example) you might have disable those extensions in order to use the new meeting controls. 

Add Science & Math Simulations to Google Sites

In the latest episode of Two Ed Tech Guys Take Questions & Share Cool Stuff I shared an update about a favorite math and science resource. That resource is PhET. PhET offers more than 150 online, interactive science and math simulations. For a while now PhET has been in the process of switching their simulations from Java to HTML5. What that means for us is that the simulations will work on any platform including iOS. And it means that the simulations are easier to include in your own website.

In the following video I demonstrate how to include PhET's science and math simulations in your Google Site. Those of you who watch the video will also notice that the simulations can also be shared via a direct Google Classroom integration.

Applications for Education
As many of us are starting the new school year in online and or blended environments, resources like PhET that provide online simulations of activities we would have traditionally done in our classrooms are more important than ever. If your teaching math or science this fall, take a look at PhET to find online alternatives to some of the activities you've traditionally done in your classroom.

Common Craft Explains Disinformation

Common Craft has released a new, timely video for this fall. The new video is Disinformation Explained by Common Craft. The new video explains what a disinformation campaign is and why organizations create them. Equally importantly, the video explains traits of disinformation campaigns and how to people can try to prevent the spread of disinformation.

Disinformation Explained by Common Craft is available to view here.

Applications for Education
Common Craft's new video about disinformation goes well with their existing videos about bias detection and facts vs. opinions. All three together could make up a core component of a lesson about how to a responsible consumer and user of online information.

On a related note, here's my video about one way to make a Common Craft-style video.

Disclosure: I have long-standing, in-kind relationship with Common Craft.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

An Overview of the New Google Images Search Options

Earlier this week Google updated and simplified the way in which you can find Creative Common licensed images through Google Images. I wrote an overview of those changes yesterday.

I made this short video to bring a bit more clarity to the new way in which you can find Creative Commons and public domain images through Google Images.

A few years ago Dr. Beth Holland and I hosted a free webinar all about copyright as it pertains to students and teachers. If you're not sure how copyright applies to your classroom, take a look at the recording of the webinar that Beth and I hosted.

How to Change Your Google Account Profile Picture

One of the ways that I can mark the start of the new school year is by the types of questions that get in my inbox. Like I do every year, this fall I've gotten a bunch of questions about customizing personal settings in G Suite. That includes how to change your profile picture. I made a video about this a few years ago, but Google has changed the user interface in G Suite a bit since then. That's why I made this new video to demonstrate how to change your Google account profile picture. Take a look.

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