Tech Tuesday

Finds and Thoughts about Tech Integration

Google Classroom Basics Resource


I have had some requests about Google Classroom basics. From “How do I get started?” to “What can I have my students use it for?”

Good news: EdTechTeacher has put together a page to help.

This resource explains how Google Classroom works and the basic terminology. There also is an FAQ section, plus video tutorials. Even using the Classroom app on iPads is covered for those who are heading in that direction.

Be sure to bookmark this invaluable resource as I’m sure that it will be growing. Google Classroom is still in its infancy and will continue to evolve as teachers & students use it, sharing ideas that will change its boundaries.

AirDrop – An Efficient Way to Share from Your iPad to Your Computer


So you have photos or videos on your iPad and want to get them to your computer?

You could use email; however, files can be too large to send. Also, maybe, email is not configured on your school iPad?

You could upload to Google Drive. (Or Dropbox or some other storage service.) Unfortunately, let’s say that the Google Drive app is not on your iPad. Of course, the app could be installed, but you don’t have admin privileges to load apps at this moment… and you can’t wait for someone who manages the iPads to help you out… you need a work around, like yesterday, right???!!!

Solution: Use AirDrop.

Below are some video tutorials I created to help you with this solution (if you prefer not to read step by step directions from Apple). [And on a side note, I learned how to screencast and record on an iPad to do this blog post! Thanks, iPad Apps for Schools! See…I’m always learning, too… ๐Ÿ™‚ }

Step 1:

Step 2:

Step 3:

Step 4:

(As a follow-up to my Playlist post, here’s a playlist of the videos!)

Hopefully, you find AirDrop to be useful to share from your iPad… and of course, you can share from iPad to iPad as well… opening up collaboration opportunities with students, but that’s another blog post at some point!

And I have to say “thank you” to Mrs. Mulholland for pushing me to explore this solution for her math iPad Mini. ๐Ÿ™‚

Organize with a YouTube Playlist


Video is a great way to grab your students’ attention. The right video can jump start a unit, teach a tricky concept, deepen understanding or serve as a review. Often videos are watched whole class with a classroom discussion following, or a teacher may assign a video in Google Classroom for independent viewing and commenting.

For whatever reason or method that you show videos, the question is “how are you saving and organizing these videos?” Do you often find yourself searching for the videos again or trying to figure out what browser in which you bookmarked them? Wouldn’t it be great if you had them all in one place, categorized, ready to share with students as well as colleagues, no matter what device you are using?

An idea: Make YouTube playlists.

YouTube is one of the most popular video services, and while there is a ton of non-educational material on it, there is equally a lot of good curriculum being shared there as well. It’s so easy to gather the videos that you find on YouTube, too.

You probably already have discovered other people’s playlists on YouTube. Here’s a social studies one:

Here is Google’s step by step directions for creating and maintaining your own playlists.

Now, when you find a great Revolutionary War video, for example, you can add it to your curated Revolutionary War playlist. You won’t lose your videos anymore. They will be kept on a virtual bookshelf filled with videos, and you even will have a single link that you can share these multiple videos with students as a review on an overall topic.

I also envision this as a great way for grade level or subject area teachers to work together in the collection of resources since you can add collaborators to playlists! See below for directions:

So what do you think? I’m curious if you currently use playlists and/or if you see this as a worthwhile endeavor?

Team Folders in Google


Want an easy way to share materials in your grade level or subject area team? Forget about emailing attachments or links, instead create a shared folder in Google Drive.

By having one person create a folder and then setting the permissions for specific collaborators to be able to edit, everyone in your group can drag and drop materials into the folder. Whatever sharing permissions are set for the folder, everything that is dragged into it gets those same permissions. In other words, you don’t have to click the share button for every single item in the folder. If someone is a collaborator on the overall folder, they will have access to everything put into it, including more folders.

This method of sharing is super easy and efficient!

If you want to make your own version of what someone has shared in the folder but don’t want to lose the original, go to File – Make a Copy. You then can save into your own space or folder in Drive or choose to share your new version into that original shared folder for others to use.

Maybe, your resolution or “make-over” for the new year is to get organized? Maybe, it’s to get more ideas? Either way, making a shared Google Drive folder with colleagues will get help get you there.

Resources: Google’s directions on how to share files and folders.

Google’s directions for adding a folder that is shared with you to your Drive

What Needs a Make-over in 2017?


Believe it or not, December is here.

A whole lot of excitement for upcoming holidays and vacation time make the weeks often fly by us. Before you know it, we are into the new calendar year. At that point, we often ask students to partake in the traditional activity of New Year’s Resolutions. Sometimes the focus is on school and what students hope to achieve, or maybe it’s of a personal matter. You may even do some reflecting yourself.

My experience is that I tend to focus on personal life resolutions. Maybe, you do as well? Yes, in the past I have pledged to eat healthier, take on a new exercise regimen, drink lots of water each day and even take more deep breaths before reacting to my family. Any of these sound familiar to you?

This year, I’d like to make a proposal that when we have our students make a resolution that we do one as well for our work at school. Honestly, I’m not sure what mine will be yet… But I’d like to invite you to join me in thinking of it in terms of a “make-over”.

What curriculum area, subject, objective or practice needs a little highlighting and sprucing up? What needs a little life breathed into it in 2017? Maybe, there’s a digital learning solution…

Before December gets away from us, let’s take time to reflect now… as well as set a plan in motion to hit the ground running in January.

Abbot Colleagues- I know it’s a busy time of year; however, please let me know if you’d like to set up a time to chat for a few minutes this month.

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