Summer break – my time to catch up around the house with gardening, cleaning, visiting, vacationing and maybe even sleep in (just a little). It is also a time for me to recharge and reflect. You won’t see me blogging until the end of August. My twitter and instagram accounts are much more active so feel free to follow those!
Google Slides is a presentation editor that users can work on individually or collaboratively. They can be used at any grade level with any subject area. Check out the various examples below!
- Create an eBook
- Flat Icon – students can show what they are learning visually with icons
- Icons by Noun Project add-on
- Writing with Pictures
- Writing/Picture Prompt
- Stop Motion Animation example
- Adobe Stock add-on – images
- Create an interactive Table of Contents
- Flat add-on – compose and insert sheet music
- Haiku Deck add-on – images, presentation templates
- Pear Deck add-on (formative assessment tool)
- Unsplash Photos add-on
Google Sheets is a web-based application that allows users to create, update and modify spreadsheets and share the data live online. They can be used at any grade level with any subject area. Check out the various examples below!
- Digital Rubrics (#2)
- Flippity add-on – turn GSheets into Quiz Show, tracker, flashcards, etc.
- Mail Merge add-on
- Power Tools add-on
- Random Generator add-on
- Template Gallery add-on
- Quickstart video
Here’s my podcast on two great edtech tools. Listen in!
Get students sharing their learning via Adobe Spark and FlipGrid. I provide an overview of each of these tools and how to get started.
Read through the 5 Ways to use Adobe Spark Video in your classroom and you will be able to instantly add these ideas throughout the year for any student-centred projects. A great opportunity to work on refining thoughts and ideas while also producing something unique and a showcase of what a students knows! Check out the tutorial at https://youtu.be/rSR_32wAyvQ.
Students can compose a dialogue for a TV/radio commercial, a phone script, a talking poem or even a memoir. Flipgrid is an online video response platform. Teachers can post topics, videos or links and students respond to the prompt through video reflections. Check out Getting Started with FlipGrid if you are new to this tool.
From all the video responses, using created criteria, peers could choose their top 10 responses and teachers can then create MixTapes that highlight some of the creative thinking over a certain period or concept. Showcase Student Videos with Flipgrid MixTapes.
Adobe just released this great interactive survey for people to find out their Creative Type. The 15 question survey assesses your overall habits and tendencies (how you think, act and see the world) and hones in to help you better understand your creative side.
We know that personality types are not just in one category or another, yet I see this survey a great one for teams or even students to get a better understanding of their creative potential as an individual (and if you do it and share with team, how it can used in that instance).
Here’s my Creative Type according to the survey:
- the strengths and potential section are bang on
- I like the middle column where it further explains my Adventurer Type (in work).
- I’ll be asking my work colleagues to complete it to see where their Creative Types land. It will be interesting to see if there is an Artist amongst us and do I already collaborate closely with them?
- Read more about the scientific study of the creative process and the creative personality via the Adobe Create Magazine April edition.
Go ahead, I dare you to take 10 minutes (or less) to complete your Creative Type survey.
In a 24/7 world, thanks to technology, we need to remind ourselves that we all have a lot in common. We just do not notice it. In the classroom or on a school staff, take time to develop relationships. Add it to scheduled meetings, events, activities, lessons, etc. There are a number of protocols and frameworks available and I will list some of my favorites below. Check out TV Danemark and how they created meaningful connections (bring a tissue).
- Student Perspective from LearnAlberta Inclusive Ed Library is filled with Interest Inventories and Surveys for the classroom but could be easily adapted for adults. From this information, appeal to their interests and use it throughout lessons, morning greetings, etc. These items can be templated online in a Google Doc or via a Google Form. A class shared Google Slide with one slide per student can also share interests and thoughts for the whole class to check out.
- Say HELLO and GOODBYE to every student every day – this is the simplest yet most important personal connection teachers can make. Watch how a Kansas teacher does secret handshakes:
- Let students inside your world – tell stories about your own family sprinkled throughout lessons and conversations. This makes teachers more relatable and accessible. Create a bulletin board, share photos add to the class blog or newsletter, whatever you are comfortable with.
- Use critical thinking frameworks like Inquiry-pacs, Tools for Thought, Critical Challenges, Picture Setys, History Docs, etc. from The Critical Thinking Consortium to have students involved in the thinking, learning, discussion, not just the teacher.
- Guide students with TRUST. Discuss what it means to be trustworthy, how we earn trust and how we can break it. Chart this out, review it, create posters. It is a powerful word. For instance, if a student has acted inappropriately on the playground, a teacher can say “I trusted you to act kindly on the playground and you broke that trust” and then work with the student in regaining that trust from their classmates.
- Kagan Structures also provide great protocols. Take a read about using them for Emotional Intelligence and another regarding Silly Sports and Goofy Games.
- Check out Huddle’s blog about the four main types of building activities – Communication, Problem Solving, Adaptability and Trust – and the activity write-ups. You will surely find one or two for you.
Robert J. Marzano has written widely that “the most powerful message from the research is that relationships are a matter of student perception” and really that “it’s what teachers DO that dictates how students perceive those relationships”.
And, don’t forget your colleagues! Create relationship building moments throughout the year, take a brain break and visit, share family or class stories. Join the #ObserveMe movement where you invite people into your classroom.
Google Earth is a free application that works as a browser for all sorts of information on Earth. It uses satellite imagery to grab, spin, pan, tilt and zoom down to any place on Earth. Students can explore every corner of the globe, measure distances, create their own virtual tours, and share their tours with others. You can also create and download layers of information and view them in geographic context.
- Have students explore the placemarks for Harry Potter and Fairy Tales from Around the World through the Voyageur section.
- Teach your students that mathematics is all around them: use Google Earth to identify shapes and angles, such as looking at the different shapes of swimming pools; or get a close-up view of a cafe with outside tables, and have students count the tables and the number of customers. For older students visit RealWorldMath.org for great idea on using Google Earth to teach mathematics.
- Have students explore verified locations where meteors have hit the Earth, then create a chart of the number of craters per continent.
- Explore the earth’s terrain in 3D – Discover the world’s incredible physical geography by using the compass to tilt your perspective into a 3D view.
- Extreme biodiversity on the high seas – Join Mission Blue on a high seas adventure to the Costa Rica Thermal Dome Hope Spot where we follow marine biologists in the field tagging turtles, tracking sharks and more.
- Pristine seas – Join Dr Enric Sala on his mission to protect the last truly wild places in the ocean. Activities.
- Have students pretend they are with Sir Ernest Shackelton during his adventure in Antarctica. Explore the virtual tour in Google Earth and have students write diary entries to personalize the experience. mapping, the iterative design process, and user feedback.
- A Storytelling Odyssey – Journalist and National Geographic Fellow Paul Salopek is walking the globe in the footsteps of our ancient forebears. Follow along as he reveals hidden stories of Earth’s remote corners, and of the people who inhabit them. Activities.
- Explorers: Age of Encounter – The explorations of Samuel de Champlain, Jacques Marquette, Louis Jolliet and Renee de LaSalle opened the interior of North America to European settlement and trade. Lesson Plan.
- This is Home – While the countries, cultures and climates may differ, knowing we all have a place to call home is a first step to understanding everything we have in common. Activity.
- Immersive global imagery – Dive into Google’s huge library of 360-degree imagery using Street View. Just click on Pegman and follow the blue lines to where you want to go in Google Earth.
- Using the Search feature, you can easily learn more about places around the world by clicking open the related Knowledge Card. Within the card you will find detailed information and related places to explore.
- Wonders of the Ancient and Modern World – From Stonehenge to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, take your classroom to locations of great historical significance around the world.