Thursday, December 5, 2019

7 Googley Wintertime Activities for Kids

As we get closer to the holiday break, it is expected and understandable that our students start getting a little distracted. They are looking forward to lots of days off, holiday celebrations, gifts, and more. Let's be honest … we may be a little distracted as well.

This is a time of year when we look for some fun activities to keep our students focused and active. But we don't just want busy work. If possible it is great to find projects that are fun, tie into wintertime themes, and still provide our students with a chance to be creative, write, or improve some content area skills.

To help out with that, I have put together seven sample wintertime-themed activities that use free Google tools, including Docs, Slides, Sheets, and Drawings. Some of these are projects I have shared in the past, while others are new twists on previous posts, and others are brand new. Hopefully some of these will be a good match for your students to keep them busy AND learning as we head into the holidays.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Decorate a Christmas Tree with Google Slides

A few years back I created a Google Slides template for "Build a Snowman". Since then I have had fun making other similar templates including "Build a Jack-O-Lantern" and "One Fish Two Fish" and more. With the holidays fast approaching I decided to make a similar activity for decorating a Christmas tree.

You can do this project with this fun, and educational, Google Slides activity. This is a great way for students to be creative and to work on their writing skills by describing or writing about their holiday traditions, plans, or memories.

Here’s how:
  • Make a copy of the Google Slides “Decorate a Christmas Tree” template, found further down in the blog post.
  • The template has a blank tree and slides full of items to add to your tree including bulbs, lights, bells, stars, and more.
  • Copy and paste the items to decorate your tree.
  • If you need different pictures, you can search for more.
  • You can even add or draw your own shapes as needed.
  • When done decorating your tree, write about your holiday traditions, a favorite memory, your best present, what you want this year, what you are thankful for, or such.
  • When all done you can download a picture of your tree and writing to share with others.

See below to get your own copy of the template, as well as more detailed directions on how to do the activity.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

What's New in Google - November 2019

Catch up on everything new in G Suite for Education from November 2019, and see great ideas and resources!

Below is the recorded video from our November 2019 Google User Meeting, along with the meeting agenda and all the awesome resources and G Suite updates from the summer months. This includes 24 new Google updates and 21 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 Apps news and features
  • Provide tutorials, demonstrations, and how-to’s
  • Share best practices of how Google Apps 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 2019 meeting:

Friday, November 1, 2019

What's New in Google - October 2019

Catch up on everything new in G Suite for Education from October 2019, and see great ideas and resources!

Below is the recorded video from our October 2019 Google User Meeting, along with the meeting agenda and all the awesome resources and G Suite updates from the summer months. This includes 33 new Google updates and 27 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 Apps news and features
  • Provide tutorials, demonstrations, and how-to’s
  • Share best practices of how Google Apps 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 October 2019 meeting:

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

15+ Awesome Article Sites for Students

Current event and general interest articles are a wonderful resource for students. They can be used for researching a topic, staying informed on what's happening in the news, pleasure reading, and more.

In the past I have shared some creative ways to use online articles as part of technology activities for student creativity and reading comprehension. For example:


Additionally Google recently added a new lesson to their Applied Digital Skills curriculum called "Annotate Text in Google Docs". This activity covers how to take an article, copy and paste it into Google Docs, and then make digital notes to understand the article using comments, highlighting, tables, and more.

One big question, however, is where to find good articles. Over the years I have come across many excellent resources for articles that are written specifically for students. See below for my current list of these sites.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Educational Activities and Games with Flippity

Educational games can be a fun way to engage students while also teaching or reviewing subject area content. These can include activities such as word searches, crossword puzzles, bingo games, flashcards, Jeopardy games, and more.

There are lots of tools online that can be used to create such activities. One creative option is to use Google Sheets templates from Flippity. This is a free website that provides a wide range of templates that you can download, fill in with your own content, and then play online through the Flippity site.

As an educator you can make these activities for your own use or for review games for your class. However, students can also use Flippity to make their own activities, which could be a fun alternative project for those interested. For example, a student could create a set of digital flashcards for the content being covered in a particular unit.

See below for how to access the templates and then use them to make your own interactive projects.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

What's New in Google - September 2019

Catch up on everything new in G Suite for Education from September 2019, and see great ideas and resources!

Below is the recorded video from our September 2019 Google User Meeting, along with the meeting agenda and all the awesome resources and G Suite updates from the summer months. This includes 22 new Google updates and 19 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 Apps news and features
  • Provide tutorials, demonstrations, and how-to’s
  • Share best practices of how Google Apps 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 2019 meeting: