Monday, November 15, 2021

What's New in Google - November 2021

Catch up on everything new in Google Workspace for Education from November 2021, and see great ideas and resources!

Below is the recorded video from our November 2021 Google User Meeting, along with the meeting agenda with all the awesome resources and Google updates from the last few months. This includes lots of new Google updates and Google resources for your class.

The monthly meetings are hosted by the Google Educator Group of Ohio, but are open to anyone from any location. The purpose of these meetings is to:
  • Connect Google-using educators
  • Share the latest Google Workspace news and features
  • Provide tutorials, demonstrations, and how-to’s
  • Share best practices of how Google Workspace is being used within schools
  • Ask questions and get answers
The video from the meeting is recorded and available for later viewing for those who cannot attend or connect live. See below to view the recorded video, agenda, and all the resources from the November 2021 meeting:

Thursday, November 4, 2021

Build a "What I Am Thankful For" Turkey with Google Slides

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, now is a great time for all of us to pause and think about what we are thankful for.

To help out with this I have created a Google Slides activity for your students. With this template your students will build a turkey where each of the feathers will display things that the student is thankful for.

Optionally the students can also use the Mote Chrome extension to record themselves explaining what they are thankful for, and adding that audio to their digital turkey.

See below to get your free copy of the "What I Am Thankful For" Turkey template, as well as a short video and detailed directions on how to use it.

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

My 2021 Midwest Ed Tech Summit Sessions

I am excited and honored to be presenting at the Midwest Ed Tech Summit (METS 2021) in Wisconsin Dells, WI on November 9th, 2021.

I always look forward to an opportunity to see old friends, make new friends, share some ideas, and learn so many new things from others.

You can see all of the details for the Midwest Ed Tech Summit at:

Below is a list of sessions I will be presenting at METS 2021, along with any associated resources. Please feel free to join me for any of these sessions. I look forward to sharing, learning, and chatting with you!

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Google Docs Calendar Templates for the 2022-2023 School Year

Last year I created some Google Docs templates for a colleague who was looking for a simple one-page document to show important calendar dates for an entire school year. The templates were a big hit and many people found them to be helpful.

Although it still feels like the school year has just gotten started, I have received several emails lately from folks asking if I have made a version for next year ... the 2022-2023 school year.

So for all of you super organized people who are already planning for the next school year, I am happy to say, yes, I have versions for 2022-2023. See below for the links to get your own copies of these templates, as well as some basic directions on how to edit them for your own use.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Google's Applied Digital Skills: 150+ Free Tech Skills Lessons for You and Your Students

Digital skills are more important than ever for our students and for us as educators. 
  • Our students need digital skills to be prepared for the jobs of their future, and to function in daily life now. 
  • As educators we need digital skills to communicate more effectively with our students, provide them with more engaging learning experiences, and to stay organized ourselves.
There are loads of wonderful resources to help all of us improve our digital skills from blogs to YouTube channels to podcasts and more. One fantastic, and totally free, resource is Google's Applied Digital Skills.

Applied Digital Skills is a totally free, video-based, online curriculum to teach digital skills for your students in any subject area and for your own professional development. There are over 150 ready-to-use lessons covering a wide range of age levels, tech tools, and topics.

See below for a short video demonstrating this awesome resource, as well as written directions with all the details. And a big thanks to Google for sponsoring this blog post!

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Build a Jack-O-Lantern with Google Slides and Mote

A few years ago I created my "Build a Jack-O-Lantern" activity for Google Slides. It was a giant hit with students as it let them be creative while improving their writing skills and tech skills.

With Fall here once again, I decided to revisit this favorite activity and add a new twist to it. In the years since I first created this project, we now have an amazing new tool in the Chrome Web Extension called Mote.

Mote is a free tool that makes it easy for you and your students to record your voice and add it directly into your slideshow (or document, form, email, and so much more). With Mote we can make this activity even more engaging than ever.

  • You can use Mote to add audio support to the activity by recording directions and embedding them right into the slideshow.
  • Your students can use Mote to record themselves reading aloud the Jack-O-Lantern story they write, and embed their narrated story into their slide.
  • And the students can record themselves making spooky sound effects or speaking for their pumpkin.

I had the pleasure of recording a video with Jon Neale and Sue Tranchina for their pop-up Mote PD series. See below for the short video explaining how your students can do the "Build a Jack-O-Lantern" activity with Google Slides and Mote, as well as detailed written directions.

Friday, October 1, 2021

What's New in Google - September 2021

Catch up on everything new in Google Workspace for Education from September 2021, and see great ideas and resources!
Below is the recorded video from our September 2021 Google User Meeting, along with the meeting agenda with all the awesome resources and Google updates from the last few months. This includes lots of new Google updates and Google resources for your class.

The monthly meetings are hosted by the Google Educator Group of Ohio, but are open to anyone from any location. The purpose of these meetings is to:
  • Connect Google-using educators
  • Share the latest Google Workspace news and features
  • Provide tutorials, demonstrations, and how-to’s
  • Share best practices of how Google Workspace is being used within schools
  • Ask questions and get answers
The video from the meeting is recorded and available for later viewing for those who cannot attend or connect live. See below to view the recorded video, agenda, and all the resources from the September 2021 meeting: