Wednesday, September 8, 2021

How to Quickly Create a Bibliography in Word

In my previous post I wrote about why every fall I revisit how to cite sources and create bibliographies. In that post I also included directions for using inline citation and bibliography generator in Google Docs. Microsoft Word has a very similar tool that students can use. 

In this short video I demonstrate how to insert citations and create a bibliography in Microsoft Word documents.


Applications for Education
Whenever I write blog posts or publish videos about tools like these I get emails from readers who like to point out that bibliography tools make it "too easy" or that there is some discrepancy between the tool and the latest minor update to MLA or APA. My point in getting middle school and high school students to use these tools is to help them build the habit of citing their sources. When they reach the point that they have a college professor who is a stickler for bibliography formats or they're submitting research papers to journals then they can worry about the minutia of the bibliography standards of academic research papers. 

How to Cite Sources in Google Docs

At the beginning of every school year I like to revisit some topics with my students to which they always say, "we learned this last year." One of those topics is citing the sources of the information that they use in their writing and in their presentations. It never hurts to review this information with students even if they say they "already learned it." There's always something they forgot over the summer or that their previous teacher(s) didn't require the them that I require when they cite their sources. 

Google Docs makes it relatively easy for students to create inline citations and bibliographies. In the last year it has undergone a few little changes. I made this new video to demonstrate how to create inline citations and bibliographies in the current version of Google Docs. Please feel free to share it with your students. 

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

How to Generate Captions for Any Video

YouTube will automatically generate captions for almost any video that you find. Likewise, it will automatically generate captions for videos that you upload to your account. That's great if you want to use YouTube. But if you have a video that isn't on YouTube and you need to display captions with it, there is a solution built into Chrome. 

In Chrome you can enable captions for any video that is played on a webpage. This will work with videos that are embedded into websites and will even work with videos that are played from your Google Drive. In this short video I demonstrate how to enable captioning in Chrome. 

Applications for Education
Enabling captions for videos that you display in your classroom (whether online or in-person) makes the content accessible to all students. Even students who you might not think need the captions enabled can benefit from having the captions displayed on screen. That is particularly true when the speaker in a video is pronouncing a difficult word or a word that is hard to hear clearly. 

How to Quickly Create Comics With Make Beliefs Comix

Disclosure: Make Beliefs Comix is currently an advertiser on this site. 

Make Beliefs Comix is a good tool for creating comic strips for all kinds of purposes including teaching empathy, practicing writing in a new language, and telling fun stories. Last week I outlined those ideas and more in this blog post

The best thing about Make Beliefs Comix is that you don't need to be able to draw in order to create a great comic strip. That's because you can use the pre-made artwork to create your comic strip. Simply select a category of artwork then choose a background, characters, decorations, and speech bubbles for your comic. You can then write your comic in one of fourteen languages supported by Make Beliefs Comix. 

In this short video I demonstrate how to quickly create a comic strip with Make Beliefs Comix. 

Combine Canva and Google Drawings to Make Graphic Organizer Activities

Last fall I published some videos about using Google Drawings and Google Jamboard to create labeling activities, mapping activities, and some graphic organizer activities. Those all relied on using the drawing tools built into Google Drawings and Jamboard. The aesthetics of the activities was limited by your imagination and what you could do with the drawing tools. For folks like me, that meant the visuals weren't always as pretty as we'd like. Fortunately, Canva has a hundreds of beautiful graphic organizers that you can import into Google Drawings to create online activities for your students. 

In this video I demonstrate how to find a graphic organizer template in Canva and then import it into Google Drawings. After importing the template into Google Drawings I demonstrate how to turn that template into an online activity for your students to complete.