Saturday, March 26, 2022

Try This New Google Chrome Feature

Those of you who subscribe to my YouTube channel might have seen me share this yesterday. There's a handy new feature in Chrome that appears when update to the latest version. The new feature is a side panel reading list that could prove to be very helpful to those of us who tend to have a lot of browser tabs open at once. 

The new side panel feature in Chrome lets you create a list of your current tabs, view the list, visit the tabs, and keep track of which ones you have and haven't read. It's kind of like a more streamlined version of "traditional" browser bookmarking. Watch this short video to see how it works. 

Friday, March 25, 2022

How to Edit Your Videos in YouTube Studio

A couple of days ago a reader emailed me to ask for help cropping a video. Specifically, he wanted to know what I thought would be the simplest online tool for cropping the recording of a livestream. My suggestion was to use the editing tools that are built right into YouTube Studio (the place where you upload videos in your YouTube account). 

Answering that reader's question prompted me to record this video overview of the basics of using the editing tools that are built into YouTube Studio. Watch the video to learn how to:

  • Upload videos to YouTube
  • Use hashtags in your video's description. 
  • Crop videos in YouTube studio. 
  • Blur faces and objects in your videos. 
  • Use YouTube's library of music in your videos. 

Newspaper Map - Find and Read Newspapers Published Around the World

Newspaper Map is a neat tool for locating and reading newspapers from locations all around the world. Newspaper Map claims to have geolocated 10,000 newspapers. To find a newspaper you can browse the map then click on a placemark to open the link within to read a newspaper. You can also locate newspapers by using the search boxes to locate a newspaper by title or location. 

In this short video I provide a demonstration of how to use Newspaper Map to find newspapers published in Iceland. The concept I demonstrate works for finding newspapers in other parts of the world as well. 

Applications for Education
When I taught current events as a regular part of my social studies classes I would always show a map of where a story takes place. Tools like Newspaper Map can provide students with a geographic connection to current and historical news stories. Newspaper Map is also a good tool for students to use to discover interesting news stories that might not be featured on global sites like CNN or BBC News.

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Kikori App - Social Emotional Learning Activities for All Ages

Kikori App is a new mobile app and website that offers a large library of social emotional learning activities for students of all ages. The mobile app (Android and iOS) and the web versions of Kikori work the same way. On Kikori you can search for social emotional learning activities according to age, energy level, skill development goal, group structure, and materials that are needed or not needed for the activity. 

All of the Kikori activities are written in an easy-to-follow structure. That structure includes how to prepare to use the activity with your students, a list of materials needed (if any), steps for playing the activity, and questions to ask before, during, and after the activity. You'll also find some suggested variations or modifications for each activity. 

You can also use Kikori to create your own social emotional learning activities. To do that simply click the "create" button in the Kikori App and follow the outline that is provided. You can make your activity public or keep it private. 

Applications for Education
Kikori could be a great resource for any teacher who is looking for some new ideas for bringing some social emotional learning activities into their classrooms. I appreciate that you can search for activities according to energy level and group structure. 

Three Ways to Share Videos Without Using YouTube

The days of heated arguments about whether or not YouTube should be accessible in school seem to be behind us. That doesn't mean that YouTube is always the best option for hosting and sharing videos in your school. In fact, just yesterday someone emailed me to ask for suggestions on how her students can share their book trailer videos without having to upload them to YouTube. 

There are three options that I generally recommend whenever I'm asked for alternatives to using YouTube to host and share students' video projects. 

  • Google Drive: this is probably the best option for teachers and students who have Google Workspace accounts. 

  • OneDrive: If you and your students have Microsoft accounts, OneDrive offers a convenient way to share video files. I particularly like that you can set an expiration date for access and a password for access. 

  • Flipgrid: An often overlooked feature of Flipgrid is to use it as a place for students to share videos that they have made outside of the Flipgrid app. You and your students can upload videos to share with each other. 
In this short video I demonstrate all of the above methods for sharing videos without using YouTube