Going Google! An Introduction to G Suite for Education

 

WHO: Teachers that are interested in getting started with G Suite for Education (formally known as Google Apps for Education).

HOW: This tutorial video is under 20 minutes in length and is a simple introduction into the icons and options inside of Google Drive, Team Drives, Docs, and Forms. Viewers will learn how to navigate, organize, and utilize a small variety of G Suite For Education products.

WHEN: This video gives examples of how you could use G Suite in the classroom, as well as in School Administration.

Data USA: Easy To Use Census Data for Classrooms

Data USA

WHO: Teachers looking for an easy way to students to search and use data from the U.S.A. Census data.

HOW: Visit https://datausa.io/, type in the location y0u are searching for, and the data will be presented.  There are many different categories, graphs, charts, and easy to understand data. After selecting a location, the user can select another locale to compare.

WHEN: Data USA would be great for geography lessons, understanding the makeup of communities, comparing communities, and much more!

PicLits: Create Images To Spark Writing Creativity

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WHO: Teachers looking for something to help students get their creativity flowing.

HOW: Create an account at http://www.piclits.com/, select an image, choose words, or select freestyle and type your own message in.

WHEN: PicLits are great for writing prompts. Teachers can use these in class to give students a starting point for their writing assignment.  Teachers could also use this as an assessment option where students are directed to create their own.

Here is an example of a PicLit freestyle mode:

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Google Cast for Education – Free Screen Mirror Tool

Google Cast for EDU - Screen Mirror tool

WHO: Teachers that need an easy way to share student screens with the class.

HOW: Teachers install Google Cast for Education to their Chrome browser from the Chrome Web Store. Once installed, teachers then set up a name and sharing capabilities.  Students can be added via GAFE e-mails, groups, or classes. Using a future version of Chrome, students will be able to select the cast feature and show the class their work.

WHEN: Most commonly, this can be used to display student projects.  However, teachers can use it as a “show me how you solved this” moment. It is also useful for getting feedback from the class on a difficult problem. It could even be used for digital show and tell.

There are many options out there to mirror student displays. The difference here is that no additional hardware (e.g. AppleTV) or paid software (e.g. Reflector 2) is needed to purchase.  The system administrator simply adds the chrome app to the teacher computer that is connected to the classroom presentation system, and the student devices have an up-to-date version of Chrome when it is released.

Using Google Apps For Education in the past has allowed students to click the share button and have the teacher show the work from the front of the classroom.  Google Cast for Education now allows the student to control the screen from their seat. The added benefit is that the teacher can now walk around the classroom. Educators will be able to help students while the work is being displayed.

Here is a video from Google Apps for Education:

Flat.io: Collaborative Sheet Music – Compose Music With Others In Real-time

Flat.io - Collaborative Musical Score Sheets

WHO: Music teachers interested in students composing music together, online, in real-time.

HOW: Sign up for an account at www.flat.io, or log in with your Google account. Users can manually create song sheets or connect via MIDI controller.  There are 70 instruments to choose from.  When creating a masterpiece, students can collaborate with others by clicking on the add icon by their account, adding others via flat username or e-mail address. Using the school version, there is also an option for teachers to share to Google Classroom.  Teachers can also create assignments from scores they have created.

Flat.io Create Assignment From Score

WHEN: Music teachers would find this useful for lessons on music notation, creating quizzes, tests, and projects. The real-time collaborative aspect gives a great opportunity for group work creating musical scores.

 

By no means am I a musically inclined person, but immediately after selecting to start a new score, I found myself engaged. I play guitar some, so for my first project I created a score for an acoustic guitar. As I put in notes, flat.io played the music for me and created tabs, which I found really useful. There are many different selections to choose from when creating your music.  When you are finished composing, you have the option to export to: .pdf, MusicXML, .mp3, .wav, and .mid.

Wheel Decide: Spin the Wheel to Pick a Random Topic

Wheel Decide - Spin the Wheel to Pick a Student, Topic, or group
Wheel Decide – Spin the wheel to pick a random answer, person, or topic

WHO: Teachers looking for a fun and fair way to let students pick topics at random for class work.

HOW: Visit  http://wheeldecide.com/, click to modify the wheel, add topics, give the wheel a title, and pick advanced options. Choices can removed after they have been landed on, color scheme can be changed, seconds to spin, and more.

WHEN: Wheel Decide is great to have student pick topics for presentations and projects. Teachers could also use it to pick topics for review games in class.  Another option would be to randomly call on students during class time. Wheel Decide is also very useful to studying vocabulary or even assigning teams. After creating a wheel, teachers can copy the embed code to their classroom LMS or website.

Below is a wheel for countries involved in World War II.

 

BreakoutEdu Digital – Engaging Digital Activities

WHO: Teachers looking for an engaging activity to build skills including critical thinking, problem solving, team work, persistence, patience, internet research and more!

HOW:  I tried activities with grades 7-8 on laptops, and grades 5-6 on iPads.  While we were in a 1:1 environment utilizing small groups, these could be done in groups of 3-5 students with one device or as an entire class together.

Visit http://www.breakoutedu.com/digital, I suggest starting with “Og’s Great Adventure” for yourself.  This will help you understand what the students will be looking for.  In both of the events I helped with, the students worked on “San Diego Vacation“.

During these events, locks will be listed on the left hand side. These locks could be words, numbers, directions, colors, etc..  Students need to search on the screen for links.  Many will be hidden and users need to pick up on subtle clues to find where to click.  These will take you to clues, hints, puzzles, or riddles. These answers could be the locks, or could give you something to search for in order to unlock the code.

WHEN: Breakouts are great activities for team building and can be used to leave lasting memories with your students here at the end of the day. The students I worked with were deeply engaged, focused for the entire time, and had huge smiles on their faces, even when they were frustrated.  The best part is being around the students when they have the “a-ha” moment of solving a lock on their own.

TelePromptor – Free Teleprompter Tool for Web Connected Devices

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WHO: Digital Media teachers and students that would benefit from using a teleprompter when creating videos. Users can create a script and run the teleprompter for free, but a paid version allows the user to save and edit later.

HOW: Visit https://telepromptor.com/, click on start script, follow the on-screen instructions to create your prompt, then push start at the bottom of the screen.

WHEN: TelePromptor is great for digital media courses creating videos.  Instead of students reading off of a piece of paper, or memorizing their lines, use TelePromptor on a computer or tablet to help get that video clip on the first try!

NotebookCast – Simple, Collaborative, Cross-Platform Online Whiteboard

WHO: Teachers that would like students to work together on brainstorming and/or creation using whiteboard space online.

HOW: Create an account on https://www.notebookcast.com, create a whiteboard, and share with collaborators using a unique code for each board.  Simple tools available such as shapes, lines, text, image insert, board capture, erase, etc.  NotebookCast is designed to also be used on tablets along with full size computers.  When creating a board, the owner sets the dimensions, which include portrait and landscape mode on iPads.

WHEN: NotebookCast is great for brainstorming projects, students creating lessons, or allowing students to demonstrate mastery of content.

Trading Card Creator From ReadWriteThink

rwt

WHO: Teachers looking for a way to engage students in learning more about historical or fictional figures, characters, and places.

HOW: ReadWriteThink  provides lesson plans and materials for creating the trading cards.  Teachers direct their students to the interactive.  Students will then upload an image and fill in the information to create the card.

WHEN: Trading Card Creator is a great tool to allow students to demonstrate mastery of content.