Thursday, December 31, 2015

Long Multiplication with Google Sheets

My two youngest boys are still in elementary school, so the topic of long multiplication comes up frequently on homework.

Long multiplication is when you multiply two numbers, such as a 3-digit number times a 2-digit number, and you show all the steps by first multiplying by the ones digit, then by the tens digit, then adding together those partial products to get the final answer.

This is a very structured step-by-step method, so it is important for students to be able to follow the process in the correct order. I wondered if Google Sheets could be used to guide a student through the steps, help keep all the numbers organized properly, and provide feedback if the student does something wrong.

The answer is yes!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

2016 Google Predictions

Over the course of 2015 we saw hundreds of updates roll out for users of Google products and services, giving us new tools and features to improve teaching and learning in our schools.

With 2016 just a few days away it is now time to predict what changes we hope to see in the new year. Below are my eight predictions for Google in 2016.

(Note: You can also see the video of these predictions in the recorded session of our December Google User Meeting here - You can skip ahead to the 1 hour 22 minute mark to jump straight to the predictions section.)

Monday, December 21, 2015

Dec 2015 Google User Meeting

Below is the recorded video from our December 2015 Google User Group Meeting, along with the meeting agenda with links to all the resources and updates covered.

In this month's meeting we covered many topics including:
  • Over 20 updates for Google Apps in the last month
  • A review of our 2015 Google Apps predictions
  • Our 2016 Google Apps predictions
  • Several questions and answers
  • Lots of other tips and resources
See the meeting agenda with all items and links: Google Document link

View the video below or at YouTube at:

Each month we hold a meeting of our Google User Group. The purpose of these meetings is to:
  • Connect Google-using educators in the area
  • Share the latest Google Apps news and features
  • Provide tutorials, demonstrations, and how-to’s
  • Share best practices of how Google Apps is being used within the districts
  • Ask questions and get answers
For those who cannot attend in person, the meetings are broadcast live using a Google Hangout. Users can join the Google Hangout remotely to participate in the meeting, or can simply watch the live stream. The video from the meetings is recorded and available for later viewing for those who cannot attend or connect live.

To see the schedule for upcoming Google User Group meetings visit:

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Introducing Control Alt Achieve

Most any computer user is familiar with the phrase "Control Alt Delete". On a Windows computer it is the key combination that we use when something is locked up or has gone terribly wrong. It brings up the Windows Task Manager which lets us break out of our frozen state, fix a problem, or even reboot if needed.

And that is the inspiration for my new web site "Control Alt Achieve". Many times in education we can also encounter problems, and technology should be part of the solution. The purpose of this site is to show how technology can help to improve and transform teaching and learning. I will be sharing resources, activities, ideas, and experiences to help us break out of our ruts, address challenges, or try a new take on old practices.

So let’s learn, explore, share, and reboot education together!