Wednesday, January 11, 2023

I'm Feeling Lucky - Around the World With Google Earth

Google Earth is one of my all-time favorite tools for teaching geography and history lessons. Two of my favorite ways to use Google Earth in the classroom are outlined below. 

From voyages to games to simple measuring tools, the web version of Google Earth has a lot of neat features that can help students learn about the world. One of those neat features is the "I'm Feeling Lucky" button that is found on the left hand toolbar in Google Earth. Clicking that button will take students to a randomly-selected place in the world. 

On its own the "I'm Feeling Lucky" button provides a good way for students to discover new places. That said, students learn more through the "I'm Feeling Lucky" button  if you give them a little more direction than just "click the button and look around." That's why I created a little question sheet to prompt students to do a little research about the places they discover in Google Earth via "I'm Feeling Lucky." My question sheet can be found here as a Google Doc

This short video demonstrates how students can explore Google Earth in more detail after clicking "I'm Feeling Lucky."

The Amazing Race is the only reality game show that I've watched with interest for as long as it has been on television. Years ago I created a classroom game based on the same premise of the show. Last spring I updated that game with some new graphics and new challenges and then published it as a PDF on

Recording a Google Earth tour is the capstone activity in Around the World With Google Earth. There are a couple of ways that students can do that. Students who are using the desktop version of Google Earth can use the built-in recorder. Students who are using the web version of Google Earth can use a screencasting tool like Screencastify to record a tour

In this short video I demonstrate how to record a Google Earth tour in your web browser by using Screencastify. 

A Quick Tip for Using the Same Color in Multiple Canva Designs

Canva has lots of helpful design tools for students and teachers. Some of those are fairly obvious while others are a bit hidden and easy to overlook. One of those that's easy to overlook is the color hex code field in the color palette selection tool. Once you know how to use it, you might never overlook it again. 

The hex code field in Canva makes it easy to make sure you use the exact shade of a color between multiple designs or multiple elements within the same design. For example, let's say I've found a really nice shade of green that I want to use in three parts of my design. I could try to use the color selector and hope that I get it exactly right each time. Or I could copy the color hex code from the first part of the design and then paste it into the other parts of the design. Watch this video for a demonstration of how to use the color hex code field in Canva.

Video - A Quick Tip for Using the Same Color in Multiple Canva Designs

You can learn much more about Canva in my playlist of more than 50 Canva tutorial.

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

How to Remove Google Forms Add-ons

Last week my Android notified me that I had 22 apps that I hadn't used in the last 30 days. I took that as a good reminder to do an audit of all the things connected to my Google account and disable or uninstall the apps, extensions, and add-ons that I no longer use. That process included removing some Google Forms add-ons as well as some Google Slides add-ons. 

If it has been a while since you last did an audit of the add-ons connected to your Google Workspace products, now's a good time to do that. When you find something that you no longer need, remove it. This short video shows you how to remove add-ons from Google Forms. The process is almost identical for Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets. 

Video - How to Remove Google Forms Add-ons

On a related note, if you have Chrome extensions installed that you no longer need, watch this video to learn how to remove them.

Video - How to Manage Your Chrome Extensions

Applications for Education
Doing an audit of the third-party tools connected to your Google account is a good digital citizenship habit to teach to students. Guide them through the process and explain to them that the fewer third-party services you have connected to your account, the fewer opportunities there are for your account to be compromised.

Ask Two EdTech Guys

At the end of 2022 Rushton Hurley and I brought the curtain down on our series of live webinars titled Two EdTech Guys Take Questions and Share Cool Stuff. The archive of the shows lives on right here. And if you can't get enough of our friendly faces and banter, we're bringing the series back in a new format! But we need your questions to make it go. 

If you have an educational technology question that is burning in your brain, we'd love to answer it for you. To submit your question please fill out the short form that's listed here and is also embedded below. 

Create a Snowman Word Game

Earlier today when I picked up my daughter from preschool she proudly showed me the snowman artwork that she had made during art class. A picture of her artwork is the featured image of this blog post. 

Seeing my daughter's snowman art reminded me of the snowman word game template offered by Flippity. Flippity's Snowman word game is a game in which students have to correctly guess the letters of a word in order to prevent their snowmen from melting. The template lets you make your own variation on the game with words and hints of your choosing. Your game can be shared with students via its assigned URL. Students don't need accounts in order to play the games that you create. Here's an overview of how to create your own online word games by using Flippity's Snowman template

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