Monday, November 20, 2017

Blackboard by Boogie Board: Liquid Crystal Paper

Technology is a wonderful tool to help students learn, but there are often when we need to hand-write or draw something to solidly its meaning. Writing on a tablet can feel awkward and unnatural.

What if there was a way to use technology and write naturally? Blackboard by boogie board is an excellent solution to write naturally, erase like a pencil, and save your notes electronically.  I recently received a Blackboard and had to check it out.

How does it Work?

First, you will need to purchase a Blackboard by boogie board, which includes everything you need. Each board is accompanied by a pen with eraser and four writing templates. Whether you want to use lines, dotted grids, a planner, or a blank sheet of paper, there is a template for you.

This inkless pen on paperless paper, which requires nothing to charge, plugin or turn on. Merely use Blackboard to plan, sketch, or draw. Blackboard allows you to write comfortably by hand, whether you are writing, editing, or erasing. The free Blackboard app helps you save, organize, and search for your writings, drawings, or plans.

The board is easy to use and transport, which makes it ideal for any situation. Check out this video for more information!




CLICKS FOR A CAUSE MONTH! 

Ava was diagnosed with stage 4 Hepatoblastoma in March of 2016 at 9 months of age. Hepatoblastoma is a cancer so rare, that only 1 in 1.2 million kids are affected. Ava’s numbers have fluctuated over the past several months, but her family is hopeful that she will fully recover. Although Ava will face a lifetime of lasting effects from the chemo, she looks like a happy little 2 year old. Currently she is getting adjusted to wearing hearing aids, and they have already greatly improved her speech! Her family is looking forward to watching her life return to normal and seeing her be able to enjoy just being a child.


During the month of November, I need your help to make a difference for Ava and her family! Here is how!

  • Visit and share blog posts - I will be personally donating 1 cent to her family’s medical fund for every blog visit for the entire month of November.

  • Make a donation - for the price of coffee or lunch, make a donation to Addison’s fund via credit or debit card. Make a contribution to Ada's PayPal account or contact Matt to send check/cash. At the end of the month, all funds will be directly sent to the family.

  • Show your support with a Like - ​  “Like” Ava’s Facebook page and share words of encouragement!

Clicks for a Cause has been helping children in need since 2013! For more information, check out my Clicks for a Cause Page!


Saturday, November 18, 2017

When Math Happens!

Many students struggle with learning Math because it can be difficult to understand for some of our students. Some students struggle to make real-world connections to Math concepts.

 Dan Meyer has created a highly engaging site called When Math Happens. The website contains a variety of real-life math problems, which Dan uses the power of technology and Math to solve. Problems are available for students in grade 3 through Calculus.


Conclusion

Each problem is aligned to the Common Core Standard and are based on real-life situations. The problems are structured with a real-life scenario, a video preview, guiding questions, and silent solution videos to help guide students to the answer.


Friday, November 17, 2017

Google Slides + PearDeck Add-On = Highly Engaging Presentations

As more classrooms become 1:1 and BYOD, there is a need for interactive and engaging tools to stimulate learning. One of my favorites is PearDeck, which is very similar to NearPod.

PearDeck has recently added an Add-On, which converts your Google Slides presentations into interactive presentations. You can design a presentation that contains interactive components, such as warm-up questions, multiple choice questions, exit tickets, temperature checks, and reflection questions. You can choose the pace, whether teacher-paced or student-paced.

How does it work? 

First, you will want to create your Google Slide presentation. Visit the Add-Ons menu, visit Get Add-Ons, and install the PearDeck Add-On. You will want to make sure that you create a PearDeck account to use this tool.



Then, visit the Add-Ons menu and use the PearDeck Add-On to add interactive components to your presentation.



Finally, you will want to visit the Add-Ons menu and Present with PearDeck. Your presentation will convert from Google Slides into a PearDeck presentation. Have your students visit peardeck.com/join to join your presentation. Students will need to login using their Google account to access the presentation.



Conclusion

One of the best things about this tool is that it creates an interactive environment for students. Students have multiple ways to interact with the presentation. I also like that you can change the pace of the presentation, whether self-paced or teacher-paced. Students need different options for demonstrating their knowledge and the PearDeck Add-On provides this!


CLICKS FOR A CAUSE MONTH! 

Ava was diagnosed with stage 4 Hepatoblastoma in March of 2016 at 9 months of age. Hepatoblastoma is a cancer so rare, that only 1 in 1.2 million kids are affected. Ava’s numbers have fluctuated over the past several months, but her family is hopeful that she will fully recover. Although Ava will face a lifetime of lasting effects from the chemo, she looks like a happy little 2 year old. Currently she is getting adjusted to wearing hearing aids, and they have already greatly improved her speech! Her family is looking forward to watching her life return to normal and seeing her be able to enjoy just being a child.



During the month of November, I need your help to make a difference for Ava and her family! Here is how!

  • Visit and share blog posts - I will be personally donating 1 cent to her family’s medical fund for every blog visit for the entire month of November.

  • Make a donation - for the price of coffee or lunch, make a donation to Addison’s fund via credit or debit card. Make a contribution to Ada's PayPal account or contact Matt to send check/cash. At the end of the month, all funds will be directly sent to the family.

  • Show your support with a Like - ​  “Like” Ava’s Facebook page and share words of encouragement!

Clicks for a Cause has been helping children in need since 2013! For more information, check out my Clicks for a Cause Page!


Thursday, November 16, 2017

AudioPlayer for Slides


The Ed Tech Team recently launched the AudioPlayer for Slides Add-On. This Add-On allows you to embed any audio file (.WAV, MP3, MP4) into your Google Slides presentation.

Not sure how to install? 



  • Simply, go to the Add-Ons menu in Google Slides. 



  • Choose Get Add-Ons and search for the AudioPlayer for Slides Add-On. 



  • Once you have found the Add-On install and give it permission to access your Google account. 



How does it work? 


  • When you are ready to use this tool, visit the Add-Ons menu in Google Slides and choose AudioPlayer for Slides. Then you will need to select Open Files. 



  • A side menu will appear on your screen. After a few seconds, you will see any uploaded audio files in your Google Drive. Choose your file 
  • Start playing your file and then choose present.

What I Don't Like


There are several things that I don't like about this tool. First, its current design is disappointing. It is designed to provide background music from your Google Drive. Although this is a cool idea, I don't see how this is any different than using my media player or playing Pandora in the background of my presentation.

Second, it was difficult to understand the concept. When I first found this tool, I though that it would be a great tool to embed audio like PowerPoint. I imagined students being able to click an icon (there currently is NOT a button) and listening to me present a topic, hear a sound effect, or listen to a speech. 

If you are looking for a tool to present a slideshow with music, then you should check this out. If not, it might not be worth the install. 




CLICKS FOR A CAUSE MONTH! 

Ava was diagnosed with stage 4 Hepatoblastoma in March of 2016 at 9 months of age. Hepatoblastoma is a cancer so rare, that only 1 in 1.2 million kids are affected. Ava’s numbers have fluctuated over the past several months, but her family is hopeful that she will fully recover. Although Ava will face a lifetime of lasting effects from the chemo, she looks like a happy little 2 year old. Currently she is getting adjusted to wearing hearing aids, and they have already greatly improved her speech! Her family is looking forward to watching her life return to normal and seeing her be able to enjoy just being a child.




During the month of November, I need your help to make a difference for Ava and her family! Here is how!

  • Visit and share blog posts - I will be personally donating 1 cent to her family’s medical fund for every blog visit for the entire month of November.

  • Make a donation - for the price of coffee or lunch, make a donation to Addison’s fund via credit or debit card. Make a contribution to Ada's PayPal account or contact Matt to send check/cash. At the end of the month, all funds will be directly sent to the family.

  • Show your support with a Like - ​  “Like” Ava’s Facebook page and share words of encouragement!

Clicks for a Cause has been helping children in need since 2013! For more information, check out my Clicks for a Cause Page!




Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Even The Smallest Changes are Great! Insert Images in Google

Even the smallest changes are good changes! If you have worked in Google Docs or Slides lately, you may have noticed a new way to insert images into your documents and presentations.

If you visit the Insert menu, you can select the exact type of image that you want to insert. You can quickly add any image by URL, uploading from your computer, searching your Google Drive or Photos, or doing a Google search.




CLICKS FOR A CAUSE MONTH! 

Ava was diagnosed with stage 4 Hepatoblastoma in March of 2016 at 9 months of age. Hepatoblastoma is a cancer so rare, that only 1 in 1.2 million kids are affected. Ava’s numbers have fluctuated over the past several months, but her family is hopeful that she will fully recover. Although Ava will face a lifetime of lasting effects from the chemo, she looks like a happy little 2 year old. Currently she is getting adjusted to wearing hearing aids, and they have already greatly improved her speech! Her family is looking forward to watching her life return to normal and seeing her be able to enjoy just being a child.




During the month of November, I need your help to make a difference for Ava and her family! Here is how!

  • Visit and share blog posts - I will be personally donating 1 cent to her family’s medical fund for every blog visit for the entire month of November.

  • Make a donation - for the price of coffee or lunch, make a donation to Addison’s fund via credit or debit card. Make a contribution to Ada's PayPal account or contact Matt to send check/cash. At the end of the month, all funds will be directly sent to the family.

  • Show your support with a Like - ​  “Like” Ava’s Facebook page and share words of encouragement!

Clicks for a Cause has been helping children in need since 2013! For more information, check out my Clicks for a Cause Page!

Monday, November 13, 2017

NEW Quizlet Learn Feature!

November is Clicks 4 a Cause Month! Check out how you can help Ava below! 



I love to use Quizlet as a way for students to remember key vocabulary terms! Quizlet just launched a new feature called Quizlet Learn, which customizes the way that you learn.



How does it work? 

When you open a set of flashcards in Quizlet, you will have the option to select the Learn feature. The learn feature tests your knowledge by giving you a variety of question types to choose from. The better you do, the harder the questions and question types.



After you choose "Learn," you can choose the Options feature to customize your study session (bottom-left corner of the Quizlet web version).



You can select from a variety of question types to customize your experience.




Finally, test yourself! As you progress through questions, Quizlet Learn keeps track of your performance! If you get a question wrong, it provides you with tools to correct your answer (see image below).



Conclusion:

This is a free-feature of Quizlet and there is nothing special that you have to do. Have your students use this easy-to-use feature to transform the way that they study!




CLICKS FOR A CAUSE MONTH! 

Ava was diagnosed with stage 4 Hepatoblastoma in March of 2016 at 9 months of age. Hepatoblastoma is a cancer so rare, that only 1 in 1.2 million kids are affected. Ava’s numbers have fluctuated over the past several months, but her family is hopeful that she will fully recover. Although Ava will face a lifetime of lasting effects from the chemo, she looks like a happy little 2 year old. Currently she is getting adjusted to wearing hearing aids, and they have already greatly improved her speech! Her family is looking forward to watching her life return to normal and seeing her be able to enjoy just being a child.





During the month of November, I need your help to make a difference for Ava and her family! Here is how!

  • Visit and share blog posts - I will be personally donating 1 cent to her family’s medical fund for every blog visit for the entire month of November.

  • Make a donation - for the price of coffee or lunch, make a donation to Addison’s fund via credit card, debit card, check, or cash. Sign up to make a donation using this Google Form. I will send you an invoice via PayPal. At the end of the month, I will make a donation directly to the family.

  • Show your support with a Like - ​  “Like” Ava’s Facebook page and share words of encouragement!

Clicks for a Cause has been helping children in need since 2013! For more information, check out my Clicks for a Cause Page!




Monday, October 30, 2017

CheckMark: A Quick Way to Grade Essays

As learning becomes increasingly digital, teachers need to find quick and innovative ways of providing timely feedback. Unfortunately, it is very time consuming to leave comments for every mistake that a student makes on an essay. The CheckMark Chrome Extension is a perfect solution for grading papers because it provides you with a menu of canned comments that automatically insert as comments into Google Docs.

How does it work? 

First, you will need to visit the Chrome Store to install the CheckMark Chrome Extension.


Next, open up a student essay in Google Docs and highlight the text that you want to comment on.  Once text is highlighted, you will see a list of comments that you can select.

Finally, choose the comment that you would like to insert. CheckMark will automatically insert the feedback as a comment in Google Docs.



Conclusion

Timely feedback is an important aspect of increasing student engagement. Students need to know what they are doing well and what they need to improve. When grading in an online environment, this can be a very difficult and time consuming task. CheckMark reduces the amount of time spent adding comments and allows you to provide students with better feedback.



November is Clicks for a Cause Month! 

Every November, my blog helps a child in need through a program called Clicks for a Cause. Clicks for a Cause has been helping children in need since 2013! For every visit during the month of November, my blog as well as other sponsors will contribute to the medical fund of a child in need.

For more information, check out my Clicks for a Cause Page! How can you help?

  • Support my blog by reading and sharing. The more visits, the more money we can raise!