Wednesday, May 12, 2021

The Differences Between Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality

One of the ten big topics to be covered in detail during the Practical Ed Tech Virtual Summer Camp is how to use augmented reality and virtual reality in education. It's important to note that while these topics are similar, there are some distinct differences between them. The biggest of those differences being how the content of AR and VR is experienced. 

A couple of years ago I created this video to explain the differences between augmented reality and virtual reality. The ideas that I shared in the video are still accurate today. In the video I utilized a handful of slides. Those slides are embedded below. 




Click here to learn more about the AR app that I mentioned in the video.

Applications for Education
One of my favorite uses of augmented reality is to help students explore historical artifacts. Some of elements of the Google Arts & Culture app make that possible. The BBC's Civilisations AR app is another good app for interacting with historic artifacts in an immersive, 3D manner. And rather than just setting students off to explore these apps on their own, I like to provide a short list of objects for them to observe and give them some questions to think about much like if they were viewing a primary source document or image. 

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.

Moving Files Between Google Workspaces Accounts

It's that time of the year when some people are winding down their time in one school district in anticipation of a summer break before moving onto a new school district in the fall. For some people that means they have to figure out what to with the contents of their school-issued Google accounts. Just this week I've had two people ask me what they should do in that situation.

My advice to those who are leaving a school district that uses Google Workspaces is to put all of the files that you want to save into folders in Google Drive. Then download those folders and save them on a personal computer and or upload them to a personal Google account (Gmail-based) or another cloud storage service like Dropbox, Box, or OneDrive. Then when you have a new Google Workspaces account issued by your new school district, you can once again upload those folders into your new account or simply share files between your personal and work accounts.

If you want to save more than just the contents of your Google Drive, you can use Google Takeout to download all of the content from all aspects of your school-issued Google account.

In this short video I demonstrate how to download folders from your Google Drive and how to use Google Takeout.



In this short video I provide an alternate method of moving between Google accounts.



On the topic of summer, the June session of The Practical Ed Tech Virtual Summer Camp is starting to fill up. Early bird registration is available now.

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.

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.