Sunday, June 29, 2014

10 Ways to Add A Google Calendar Event

One thing I absolutely love about Google Calendar is all the different ways you can add an event. I don't think Google could make it any easier. 

Here is a presentation that I put together on 10 Ways to Add a Google Calendar Event. Feel free to share with others.  
http://goo.gl/DwCHoa

Friday, June 27, 2014

Purpose of Google+ and Hangouts

I will be honest, I am relatively new to Google+. My district has just recently decided to open it up for staff. I felt the need to create resources to help them through the transition. This week I created a Google+ Overview Cheat Sheet, Starting a Google Hangout Cheat Sheet, and Participating in a Google Hangout Video Chat Cheat Sheet.

have gotten a lot of great feedback from those cheat sheets. I love creating resources that others find useful...after all why would you create something that people won't use. 

Now that the basics have been created I feel like I need to address the purpose of using Google+ and Hangouts. 

First off, it is a great tool to use professionally. We teach in a time where teachers should no longer have their "door" closed. I mean that metaphorically, of course. If we expect to make a great impact in education, then we need to come together and collaborate worldwide.  

Google+ opens the door for educators to come together to build a Professional Learning Network (PLN). Here are just a couple ways to build your Google+ PLN:

  1. Find educators you trust and admire and add them to your circles. 
  2. Join a community that specializes in  your interests and/or subject(s) you teach.
  3. Ask questions, request help and find resources through your circles and communities.
  4. Share your resources and ideas.
  5. Lead/Attend a professional development via a Google Hangout Video Chat

I know Google+ is not the only way to build a PLN. I am also active on Twitter and love my Twitter PLN, but why limit myself to only one source. 

Secondly, Google+ is a great tool to use with students. I am going to be working on a resource in the near future that will highlight various ways, but until then let me highlight just a few: 

  1. Participate in a Mystery Hangout - this will introduce students to other students around the world, as well as help them develop their questioning skills. 
  2. Bring experts into the classroom via Hangouts - invite authors, engineers, community members, etc. into the classroom via a Hangout
  3. Have students create study groups
  4. Host tutorials via Google Hangouts Live on Air - have students use the chat feature to post their questions/needs
Here is a link to a blog that was written on Google Hangouts. They shared several ideas, as well as featured one of the resources I created. 

If you are on Google+ please add me and become part of my PLN. 


Friday, June 6, 2014

Chrome Apps and Extensions

I have become a Chrome App and Extension junkie. I truly think I have an obsession or addiction or just plain infatuation. Perhaps it is all three and I am OK with that. I embrace the fact that I AM A CHROME ADDICT. There I said it, so let me see what I can do to get you to become an addict, too.

Chrome Apps are web-based applications that work within the Chrome browser. Some app even integrate with Google Drive. There are apps that allow you to create collages of pictures, edit pictures with effects and text, leave voice feedback on a Google document, access my Kindle books on my computer, and more. The apps that I have downloaded are free and while some have a premium version you can pay for, I have found the free versions to work just great for me.

Chrome Apps can be download from the Chrome Web Store and once downloaded can be found in multiple locations.

Here is a document that I have put together with some of my favorite apps. Of course, this document is a work in progress, so please bookmark it and reference frequently.

I will admit that although I do love the apps I am way more of a Chrome Extension junkie. Chrome Extensions are extra features and functions that modify the Google Chrome browser. You can do things like save tabs for future retrieval, send a PDF of a website to your Drive, create shortened URLs and QR Codes, bookmark websites to Diigo/Pocket/Delicious, etc., pin websites to Pinterest, and so much more. Chrome Extensions can be downloaded from the Chrome Web Store and are housed on your browser toolbar.

                         

You can disable/enable extensions that you aren't using in settings or with one of my favorite extensions called Extensity. Here is a document that I have put together with some extensions that I recommend. Just like the apps document, this list is a work in progress.

I hope you enjoy your summer and get a chance to learn some new Chrome apps and extensions. I tell you once you start downloading you won't want to stop. Hope to see you at the next Google Chrome Addict meeting...oh I should start hosting these...