Showing posts from October, 2017

Google Drawings - Drag & Drop questions (guest post by Adam Llevo)

Recently I read about a post by Adam Llevo (@MrAdamPE) about creating and using interactive Drag & Drop worksheets for students.  With drag & drop questions being a part of our current state assessments, this intrigued me.  Upon checking it out, all I can say is...WOW!  There are so many applications for this idea - here are a few that I thought of initially:

drag & drop the appropriate equation on a variety of graphs (Algebra)drag & drop the parts of a flower (3rd grade Science)drag & drop the appropriate word into sentences (Upper El ELA)drag & drop to label a map (Social Studies)and of course, Adam's examples show how to use it in Health & PE! The applications for this are boundless.  And if you are using Google Classroom, turning your prepared document into a template that is share with students is so easy! Check out his blog post & examples - 
From Adam Llevo's blog post "Using GDrawings in #PhysEd & #Health"

Most recently I hav…

Google Calendar - updated Calendar menus

One of the biggest changes with the Google Calendar updates is the reorganization of the menu/setting options.  The initial layer is cleaned up.  The secondary layer is at first glance overwhelming, but if you take a few minutes to look through it you realize that there is really not much new there - it is just that reorganization of the items.

First - here is a look at the new next to the old menus when you right click on a calendar -
The colors are cleaned up and reorganized, and there are only a few options on this menu now.  The "Display only" and "Hide from list" options are now a little more obvious than they were before.  Everything else is now the the third option - Settings and sharing.  Here is what you get when you select that for a calendar -

All those items listed above are actually links to the various sections now found in the main content area of the page -  There really isn't much new, but there is some rewording of several sections which shou…

MeL - New Chrome Extension for Searching Opposing Viewpoints in Context

A new Chrome extension is coming to help students (and teachers) search the Opposing Viewpoints in Context resources along with general Google searches!

From Deb Renee Biggs and Sonya Schryer Norris, Library Consultants at the Library of Michigan:

There are updates to the very popular Opposing Viewpoints in Context! Use this MeL resource for excellent commentary and viewpoints on numerous social issues.  It’s perfect for social studies research and for inquiring minds at your libraries!
Coming in November, an Opposing Viewpoints In Context extension will be available in the Chrome Web Store. When added to Chrome browsers, it will display results from Gale’s popular database alongside Google search results.
The Gale Chrome extension puts OVIC resources in the everyday workflow. Library users can view and retrieve high quality content from Opposing Viewpoints In Context that includes academic journals, reference content, and viewpoints on today’s hottest social issues.
Training document…

Google Script - Create a Folder from Form Entry Data

Just put together this quick little script as we needed a folder created upon a form entry. In our case, we needed a folder created with the name of the person, so we are pulling the name entry from the form and setting that as the folder name.  This also includes how to direct it where to save these folders so they are sub-folders of an existing folder and not cluttering up the root level of your Drive.

Thought I would share in case someone else needs something similar!

1. Create your form.
You may want to enter 1 sample entry so you can test your script later. 

2. Create the form responses spreadsheet.
This will house the data from the form entries - you will be connecting the script to this sheet.

3. Open up the Script editor 
Go to the Tools Menu and select Script editor.

4. Replace the code.
Replace the default code -

with this - (all the text highlighted in gray include the final bracket) -

function createStudentFolder() {

// identify the sheet where the data resides
var ss = Sp…

Google Calendar - Adding Events (new calendar)

With the changes to Google Calendar, things look a bit different.  The look is definitely more "modern" or "sleeker" (according to others...I guess I am more about functionality than looks).

That being said, here's a quick review of all you can do when adding an event to your calendar, with screenshots updated to the new look.

Adding an Event

1. Click to Add
Simply click on the calendar to add an event.  The pop-up window will have the most common information put into an event:
event Title, Date(s) and Time (only viewable when the All day checkbox is unchecked)All day checkboxCalendar - Notice anything missing from that?  Location!  It is the only thing bothering me at this point - especially because you cannot quick add it by calling the Event "Sample at CISD" or something similar (Trust me, I tried every way I could think of...).

Two neat features I did realize in exploring:
While the quick add option is gone from the page, it is now very easy to chan…

Google Calendar - Overview of New Calendar

The revamp is here for Google Calendar!  It is a different look and feel from the current calendar.  Here is a brief overview in case you decide to turn it on, once you have the option.

Once you are able to use the new Calendar, you will see this blue button added to the top between your view options and the More drop-down:

When you select to Use new Calendar, you will see this screen.  Note that in addition to clicking GOT IT, you have a second option to CUSTOMIZE -

If you select to customize, you will have 2 options (as of this blog post) - the fist to set the density of the information, and the second to choose the color set - 

 Right now there are limited options for each of these -

Now, when you click on an event, you see many more details about the event, and can even interact with some of the details without opening the event up in the larger event window - 

 Additionally, invitations are reverse colored if you have not responded to them yet -

MeL Minute - Health & Wellness Resource Center

From: Deb Renee Biggs and Sonya Schryer Norris, Library Consultants at the Library of Michigan
With a recently released re-design, Health and Wellness Resource has the tools and features that customers expect from Gale databases, including a mobile-responsive design, Google/Microsoft integration, citation tools, Readspeaker, language translation, and more.
The update also includes a new topic browse experience for the most popular and highly-searched health and wellness topics, featuring portal topic pages that organize results from different content types on one page, similar to Gale’s In Context product line.
While the look is new, HWRC delivers the same comprehensive, up-to-date content that customers have trusted for years. Now users can more easily search and work with HWRC’s broad collection of full-text reference sources, including respected Gale medical encyclopedias; full-text articles from health-related journals, magazines, and newspapers; images; streaming vi…

Participate in the National SpeakUp Research Project

Get your district registered today - Speak Up 2017 began on Monday! Let your voices be heard!

From the site -
Speak Up 2017 Opens Monday!Speak Up is the research tool districts use to learn what students, educators, parents and the community have to say about education issues. This will be the 15th year Speak Up has supported education leaders in including the voices of their stakeholders in annual and long-term planning. Educators from more than 30,000 schools have used Speak Up data to create and implement their vision for the next generation of learning. You can too! Get registered! Get started! View & view the 2017 surveys today! Speak Up will be open for stakeholder participation from October 16, 2017 through January 19, 2018. Data will be delivered to registered schools and districts in February 2018. If you have any questions, please let us know!

Virtual Field Trip - Detroit Institute of Art

Please share with other teachers - here is a great opportunity from the Detroit Institute of Art!  In addition to the virtual field trip, there are lesson plans, activities and badges that you can use with your students.

From the site:
GRADES 6-12 Learn the science of art conservation.  Go behind-the-scenes at the Detroit Institute of Arts with Detroit Public TV Virtual Field Trip and go where no one has ever gone before!  What lies behind the surface of a 400-year-old sculpture? Is what you see on a painting real, or did the artist mean to draw something totally different? And, what about Infrared Reflectography—what does that exactly do? Detroit Public Television teamed up with the Detroit Institute of Arts for a Virtual Field Trip to take students and teachers behind the scenes into the restricted area at the DIA to help them explore new ideas and dig deep under the surface of art and science. It's chemistry, physics, biology, and geology sprinkled with “Ferocious curiosity.”

Google Slides - Add Pizzazz by Inserting Diagrams

It's worth noting a new option in Slides - the ability to add some template Diagrams!  It is a fast way to get a great looking diagram in your slideshow.  There are several options, and you have the ability to edit it to suit your style/needs.

Here's how to use it -

1. You will find this option under the Insert Menu:

2. When you select it, it will open up your options in a drawer on the right-hand side.  There are 5 different types of diagrams you can create:

3. When you choose which type, you then get additional options in how that type of diagram is displayed:

4.  There is also an option for how many steps/layers/levels are a part of the diagram:

5.  Once you click on the template diagram, it will load onto your current slide:
6.  You can customize the diagram by clicking on various parts of it:

7.  Occasionally a couple parts are grouped together.  In my example the line on the color bar and the corresponding text are grouped:
 You can go to the Arrange menu and select…

Google Sites - Embed a Twitter Stream (on the New Google Sites)

We have several schools/teachers that have been updating their websites to the newer version of Google Sites, and one of the most common questions I have been getting is how can they have a Twitter stream on the site?  The simple answer's complex.

In fact, until about a month ago, I didn't even think it was possible.  Then I stumbled across this video tutorial by Ben Wilkoff on just this.  (It is a paired down version of his longer (27 minute) video if you want to watch it slower.) Here's my contribution - a step-by-step screenshot tutorial.  It's a bit long, but it does the trick!

1. Start by going to Ben's template sheet - this provides the simple directions and templates needed (the link is also at the top of the sheet as seen here):

2. Make a copy of his template sheet to have your own copy (and so you can complete this process) - I recommend renaming it.

3. Grab and setup the latest version of TAGS (Twitter Archive through Google Sheets).  Ben provide…