Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Ten Tips for Using Audio and Video in Google Slides

Besides looking at the calendar and my own students' behavior, the other way I know the school year is winding down is the uptick in questions that I get about making slideshows for end-of-year school activities. In fact, just this morning I had two questions from readers about incorporating audio into looping Google Slides presentations. If you're in a similar position of creating an end-of-year slideshow and you have questions about incorporating audio or video into those slideshows, here are two videos containing ten tips about using audio and video in Google Slides. 

Five things you should know about using videos in Google Slides.
1. Three ways to add videos.
2. Automatic playback.
3. Selecting specific portions for playback.
4. Muting audio within the video.
5. Adding drop shadows.



Five things you should know about using audio in Google Slides.
1. How to upload audio files.
2. How to loop audio.
3. How to hide audio icon.
4. How to adjust audio icon.
5. Sharing settings for audio files.



Get public domain audio at pixabay.com/music

Three quick ways to record audio to use in Google Slides.

The Practical Ed Tech guide to finding media for classroom projects.

This post originally appeared on FreeTech4Teachers.com. If you see it elsewhere, it has been used without permission. Sites that steal my (Richard Byrne's) work include CloudComputin, TodayHeadline, and 711Web. Featured graphic created by Richard Byrne.

Three Good Options for Drawing on Digital Maps

Creating layers and tours in Google Earth and Google My Maps can be a great way for students to assemble collections of geolocated information to summarize research, create a book tour, or even develop safe walking and biking routes. But sometimes you just need to quickly draw or pin things to a digital map. In those cases, launching Google Earth or My Maps is a bit more than you need. That's when Scribble Maps, Google Drawings, or Google Jamboard are handy. 

Scribble Maps is a digital mapping tool that lets anyone make free-hand drawings on top of a variety of base maps. To use it simply head to ScribbleMaps.com/create/ and select one of the drawing tools. Registration is not required in order to use it although there are some pop-ups that will try to sell you on upgrades from the free version. Here's a short overview of Scribble Maps. 



Google Drawings and Google Jamboard both let you import images that you can then draw on top of. To do that just open a new Google Drawing or new Google Jamboard then use the integrated image search to find a map. Once you've selected a map you can use the drawing tools to mark on it. Here's a demonstration of how that process can work in Google Drawings.



The process that I described above for using Google Drawings and Google Jamboard can also be done with the online version of PowerPoint. To do that, create a new slide then use the integrated Bing Images search to find a map. One of the nice things about the Bing Images integration in PowerPoint is that it will automatically search for Creative Commons licensed works and automatically insert an attribution link. Once the image has been added to the slide you can use the built-in drawing tools to mark on the map.

To learn more about using Google Earth and Maps in your classroom, check out my Crash Course on Google Earth and Maps for Social Studies.

This post originally appeared on FreeTech4Teachers.com. If you see it elsewhere, it has been used without permission. Sites that steal my (Richard Byrne's) work include CloudComputin, TodayHeadline, and 711Web. Featured screenshot created by Richard Byrne.

Monday, May 10, 2021

How to Embed Word Documents Into a Blog or Website

One of last week's most popular posts was this one highlighting my favorite "hidden" features of Office 365 tools. To start this week I have another hidden Office 365 feature that you might find handy. That feature is the option to embed Word documents into your blog or website. You can do that with any document that you access through your online Office 365 account. 

To embed a Word document into a blog post or web page simply follow these steps. 

1. Open your Word document in your web browser through your Office 365 account. 

2. Select "File" then "more file options." "More file options" is found by clicking on the three horizontal dots under the folder icon. 


3. Choose "share" then choose "embed."

4. Copy the provided embed code and paste it into your blog post or web page editor just as you would when embedding videos from YouTube or Vimeo. You can alter the size of the display by changing the width and height dimensions in the embed preview window. 


Applications for Education
Embedding a Word document into your website or blog can be a convenient way to share documents with parents or students without having to re-write the content in your website or blog editor. It's more convenient for you and it's more convenient for them because they don't have to download the documents in order to read them.



This post originally appeared on FreeTech4Teachers.com. If you see it elsewhere, it has been used without permission. Sites that steal my (Richard Byrne's) work include CloudComputin, TodayHeadline, and 711Web. Featured screenshots created by Richard Byrne.

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Pictures, Wolves, and Code - The Week in Review

Good morning from Maine where the sun is rising on what promises to be a fantastic Mother's Day weekend. Happy Mother's Day to all the moms that read my blog, especially my mom! We're doing some gardening this weekend. I hope that you have something fun planned for your weekend as well. 

This was another busy week as I tried to keep some balance between my full-time teaching job, keeping this blog going, hosting a webinar, and training for the Unbound Gravel 200 in early June. When summer finally gets here it will feel like a vacation to just have to worry about hosting the Practical Ed Tech Virtual Summer Camp. I hope you'll join me then. 

These were the week's most popular posts:
1. Ten Good Tools for Telling Stories With Pictures
2. My Ten Favorite "Hidden" Office 365 Features
3. Ten Google Workspaces Features for Teachers You Might Be Overlooking
4. Five Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp FAQs
5. Blackbird Code - Overview and First Impressions from My Students
6. Wolves in My Yard and Penguins in My House! - Fun With Augmented Reality in Search
7. 7 Interesting Features You Can Add to Google Sites

On-demand Professional Development
Other Places to Follow Me:
  • The Practical Ed Tech Newsletter comes out every Sunday evening/ Monday morning. It features my favorite tip of the week and the week's most popular posts from Free Technology for Teachers.
  • My YouTube channel has more than 35,000 subscribers watching my short tutorial videos on a wide array of educational technology tools. 
  • I've been Tweeting as @rmbyrne for fourteen years. 
  • The Free Technology for Teachers Facebook page features new and old posts from this blog throughout the week. 
  • And if you're curious about my life outside of education, you can follow me on Instagram or Strava.
This post originally appeared on FreeTech4Teachers.com. If you see it elsewhere, it has been used without permission. Sites that steal my (Richard Byrne's) work include CloudComputin, TodayHeadline, and 711Web. Featured image captured by Richard Byrne.

ICYMI - Two Ed Tech Guys Take Questions & Share Cool Stuff - Episode 36

Every other week my pal Rushton Hurley from Next Vista for Learning and I get together to host the plainly-titled Two Ed Tech Guys Take Questions & Share Cool Stuff webinar. Earlier this week we hosted the 36th episode in the series. If you missed it, the recording is now available to view here or as embedded below. The slides and links to all of the resources that we shared during the webinar are available right here on the Next Vista webinars page



The next episode in the series will be held on May 20th. You can register for it for free right here. If you have a question that you want us to answer, please send me and email or submit it through the Next Vista for Learning contact page. We'll do our best to give thoughtful, practical, and concise answers.

This post originally appeared on FreeTech4Teachers.com. If you see it elsewhere, it has been used without permission. Sites that steal my (Richard Byrne's) work include CloudComputin, Today Headline, and 711Web.