Great little introductory article on How to start using Google App’s in the classroom… This will help you get your feet wet and kick-start your learning curve.
Google Forms are a great way to create surveys, quizzes, and get people to sign up for various and sundry tasks or events. One of the buggaboos around Google Forms has been that they were not printer-friendly (in the event that you needed a hard copy of your form, as well as the online digital version). As of June 19th, 2013, that situation has been resolved. This greatly enhances the functionality of Google Forms for the classroom teacher.
August 2014 UPDATE
Find out about all of this summer’s most important updates to Google Drive, Google App’s and Google Maps in this comprehensive posting at FreeTech4Teachers.
Indeed since I posted this earlier in the summer, there have been additional updates. Learn more about these in a comprehensive PDF file available here.
Sept 2015 UPDATES
A few updates of particular note…
From Free Tech 4 Teachers… A new playlist of tutorials featuring 65 videos about Google Apps. Something for everyone.
From TDSB Teaching and Learning about Technology, Google Classroom Updates for Fall 2015. Highlighting some of the best updates and new features.
TDSB Google Apps Education Resources
When you’re ready to get going, refer to the AW Google Apps for Education Resources page.
- TDSB is a Google Apps for Education customer. This means that our district has access to all of Google’s Educational products and services at no cost with no ads, in our own private and secure part of Google.
- Today TDSB is using a number of Google Apps including Calendar, Drive, Contacts, Docs (word processing), Sheets (spreadsheets) and Slides (presentations).
- Every TDSB student and staff member has access to all these Google Apps through Academic Workspace 3.0. Please read on for more information & help resources on specific Google Apps for Education.
- Use your Google Drive to share videos… privately.
Chat with up to 9 friends. An alternative to Skype, or Facetime. Read an interesting article titled “Using Google Hangouts and Edmodo to Engage Students.”
Google Hangouts differ from Skype, FaceTime and Facebook Video Chat because they focus more on group interaction as opposed to one-on-one interaction. Another feature of a Google Hangout is that users can share documents, images and YouTube videos with other users. (From a posting at Edudemic)
Google Cultural Institute
The Google Cultural Institute is a multi-pronged affair. Individual parts include the following:
- Google Art Project: The Google Art Project allows you to view artwork from dozens of major museums around the world. Some institutions even allow you to use Google Street View technology to “visit” inside the museum. Learn more in postings at Free Technology for Teachers and/or at Open Culture.
- Historic Moments: Historic Moments allow you to “Explore online exhibitions detailing the stories behind significant moments in human history. Each exhibition tells a story using documents, photos, videos and in some cases personal accounts of events.”
- World Wonders Project: The World Wonders Project allows you to explore the wonders of both the ancient and the modern world. “The World Wonders Project also presents a valuable resource for students and scholars who can now virtually discover some of the most famous sites on earth. The project offers an innovative way to teach history and geography to students all over the world.”
Google Reader has wrapped up and closed up shop as of the end of June 2013, but there are a number of alternatives out there. If you are looking for a replacement to Google Reader, or are looking to jump in and find a tool to help you organise the news and information you want to follow, there are alternatives. Some suggestions include:
- Feedly (there is a lot of buzz about this on EdTech blogs)
- Pocket (I’m using this and loving it, but it’s a manual tool)
- News 360
- The Digg Reader (read an article about this at Edudemic)
- The Old Reader
(Read an article about these last four, and Feedly, at Free Technology for Teachers)
- 18 Google Earth and Maps Lessons for K-12 (Science, Language Arts, Math and Social Sciences)
While not a direct member of the Google “family” WatchDoc is a Google Chrome extension which allows the author of a GoogleDoc to keep tabs on who is editing the GoolgeDoc. For further information, and a discussion of the educational applications of WatchDoc, read the short article at Free Technology for Teachers.
- Want to incorporate Google Calendars into you practice? Refer to “A Short Guide to Creating and Sharing Google Calendars” at FreeTech4Teachers.
- Learn how to enable text notifications on your Google calendar.
- A quick lesson on how to show all your event details in your Google Calendar posting.
- Learn how to share lesson outlines and/or handouts in your Google Calendar.
Google Slides (Presentation Tool)
- Improved options for fading and flying in objects. Learn more here. (April 2015)
- Is your form going to be posted for an extended period of time? Learn how to set up Notifications so you know when someone has completed your form.
- Learn how to customise background images and themes. Watch the video example.
- Turn spreadsheet cells into Google doc’s. Learn how here.
- Create trendlines of your Google Spreadsheet data for both linear and exponential data.
Become a Google Educator, the first step to becoming a Google Certified Teacher.
I have delivered hundreds of hours of professional learning over the last ten years or so, and a vast portion of those sessions have focused on using Google tools in the classroom. I’ve learned a lot of lessons as a Google trainer, A LOT! So to help other trainers, I put together a framework for Google PD that I hope others will benefit from. I’m sharing the order that I teach G Suite apps as well as sharing free resources and tips along the way.
Of course, every teacher/trainer is different, with a different personality and different strengths and weaknesses; and every group of participants varies as well.
I presented a lot of these ideas last summer at ISTE 2017. Feel free to peruse the slides from my presentation, which contains much more than I can cover in one blog post.