Articles in category "Weekly post"

Weekly post #59 - Chrome Actions, Chromebook Touchpad tips, translated captions in Google Meet, ManageBac certification and Discord

Type Create Google doc into the Omnibox, and Chrome will…

Chrome Actions enable you to complete tasks from the browser quickly. Omnibox is Google's name for the address bar at the top of the Chrome window. As well as showing the address of a web page, you can also use it to search.

If you type 'Create event' in the Omnibox, you will see an Action clip - see image above - click the Action Clip and bingo, you are creating an event.

There is a whole range of useful Chrome Actions - here are some highlights →

  • Create presentation
  • Manage downloads
  • Translate this page
  • Delete history
  • Incognito

Read more here → support.google.com - Use Chrome Actions to quickly complete tasks

10 Chromebook Touchpad Tips

Speed up what you are doing with your Chromebook and show off some slick skills with the touchpad tips outlined in the poster above.

Read more here → Control Alt Achieve - 10 Chromebook Touchpad Tips and FREE Poster [11 November 2022]

Translated captions in Google Meet

Translated captions provide real-time translations of the speaker's language, helping to make meetings more inclusive and collaborative for meeting participants.

You can use translated captions to translate English to or from these languages:

  • French
  • German
  • Portuguese
  • Spanish

Google has recently expanded this feature so that you can now →

  • Translate English calls into Japanese, Mandarin (simplified), and Swedish
  • Translate French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish calls into English

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - Expanded language support for captions and translated captions in Google Meet [16 December 2022]

ManageBac Certification

ManageBac has formally unveiled its complete ManageBac Certification programme.

The Certified Educator programme formally allows administrators and educators to test and demonstrate their expertise with our platform.

Each asynchronous, online exam can be undertaken whenever, wherever – with helpful resources provided to support meaningful, self-paced revision, and assessments tailored to specific roles and academic programmes.

managebac.com/blog - ManageBac Certification [20 January 2023]

Upon successfully completing their chosen exam, users receive a digital certificate and badge, evidencing their status as a ManageBac Certified Educator.

Read more here → managebac.com/blog - ManageBac Certification [20 January 2023]

What is Discord?

Discord is popular with specific groups of our students.

This article from Childnet gives a good overview → What is Discord? A guide for parents and carers [21 June 2022]

Weekly post #58 – Padlet notifications, the Chromebook clipboard menu, file locations in Drive, the Mote Certified Educator course and ChatGPT in education

Padlet - now with email and push notifications

Padlet

Everyone at Ecolint currently has access to a paid Padlet account. Padlet is an excellent collaboration tool and can be a useful 'front page' for a class, group or department.

Padlet has recently made it possible to follow individual padlets to receive notifications when new posts are added. If you visit a Padlet that you would like to follow and click on the notification 'bell' in the right-hand side tool column - you then have the opportunity to 'follow'.

If you click on the three dots at the bottom left-hand corner of the Padlet home screen → then Settings → then Notifications you have the possibility to control the notifications you generally receive from Padlet as well as the Padlets and individuals you follow.

Read more here → padlet.blog - Stay on top of your Padlet activity with email and push notifications [15 December 2022]

[Chromebook] Use Search + V to paste one of the last five things you copied

[Source]

Hopefully, we all know Ctrl+X, Ctrl+C, and Ctrl+V for cut, copy and paste actions on not only your Chromebook but on Windows as well (substitute Cmd for Ctrl and these work on a Mac).

If you use Search (the key with a magnifying glass icon on) + V you will see a list of the last five things you copied to the 'clipboard'. You can then use the pointer (mouse or trackpad or touchscreen) to choose what you want to paste. The up and down cursor keys and enter also do the same selection role.

Read more here → support.google.com - Chromebook keyboard shortcuts

Easily see file locations in Google Drive

In addition to seeing a file’s name, owner, modification date, and size, Google added a column to include location information in the Search, Recent, Starred and Trash web views of Google Drive.

This feature makes it easier to differentiate between similarly-named files stored in different locations and find precisely what you’re looking for at a much faster rate.

Read more here → workspaceupdates.googleblog.com - Easily see file locations in Google Drive [1 June 2022]

The Mote Certified Educator Program

As discussed in the last ICT-themed faculty meeting, all educators at Nations Secondary have access to 'full' Mote accounts.

I would wholeheartedly recommend the Mote Certified Educator program. The online self-lead course, which can be paused and rejoined, takes about an hour and is a valuable way to upskill yourself, building on the introduction in the staff meeting.

ChatGPT3 in education

There is a lot being said about OpenAI and ChatGPT and their impacts on education. This podcast from 'The International Schools Podcast' is well worth a listen to help you understand some of the questions being asked about this quickly evolving situation.

[13 January 2023]

Weekly post #57 – Managing Chrome tabs, producing Chromebook screencasts, sharing YouTube clips and producing timelines in Sheets

The following topics, ideas and themes are a summary of updates shared during the November 2022 IT themed faculty meeting at International School of Geneva - Campus des Nations Secondary.

Managing tabs in Chrome

How many open Chrome tabs is too many?

Are you making use of the Chrome bookmark bar and the feature where you can organise bookmarks in folders?

Have you explored Chrome tab groups yet?

If you ‘live you life in bookmarks’ consider using raindrop.io! It is one of my favourite apps and I use it on a daily basis.

The [Chromebook] Screencast

If you have a Chromebook you have access to the Screencast app. If you have the need to record what is happening on your screen along with your commentary, maybe to explain a process or similar, it is worth checking out the following video, produced by John R Sowash

Google Documents notifications

For a long time now it has been possible to be notified when changes were made to a Google Sheet. Google has now brought similar capabilities to Google Documents.

Tools → Notification settings →tick 'Added or removed content'

Google Documents Notification settings

I use this function to monitor a 'bulletin' document. When additions are made to the document I receive an email notification. This means that I do not need to remember to regularly check the document - but also not miss out when additional content is added.

Top tips when using YouTube

YouTube

There's a range of keyboard shortcuts that you can make use of when using YouTube to display your fluency and skills. Here are my favourites →

  • Spacebar → Play/Pause.
  • f → Activate full screen.
  • c → Activate closed captions and subtitles if available. To hide captions and subtitles, press C again.
  • Number 0 → Goes to the start of the video

Find more Keyboard shortcuts for YouTube here.

If you place the pointer over a video's progress bar a red dot will appear. If you then right click on that red dot you are presented with some options. One of these is 'Copy video URL at current time'. If you click on that and then share the copied link (URL) with somebody then if they click on the link the video will open and start playing at that time.

YouTube clips

Some content producers allow you to produce a 'clip' of their video. This would then allow you to easily share that clip (section of a video) with a student, class or team. The following video explains the process →

Read more about this here → support.google.com - Share clips

The Google Sheets Timeline feature

You can now produce timelines in Google Sheets. This is a useful and powerful feature that presents opportunities for use in the classroom as well as by educators for project management.

Check out this excellent video produced by Eric Curts

Weekly post #55 – Interview Warmup, mote's STEM model and the work of Childnet

Google's Interview Warmup

Google released Interview Warmup this week as part of their Grow with Google programme.

The Interview Warmup is interesting. It poses interview questions, it then transcribes the responses and offers tool to highlight the most-used words, job-related terms etc.

Even if you are not looking for a new job the technologies here are worth a look.

If you still have classic Google Sites take action now!

Google has kept extending the related deadlines but if you still have 'classic' Google Sites now is the time to transition them to 'new' Sites.

The new timeline is:

  • Starting December 1, 2022 (previously June 1, 2022): You will no longer be able to edit any remaining classic Sites in your domain.
  • Starting January 1, 2023 (previously July 1, 2022): Classic Sites will no longer be viewable unless they are converted to new Google Sites.

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - Migrate your classic Google Sites before December 1, 2022 [16 May 2022]

Using mote STEM mode

mote enables you to easily leave audio comments/feedback within the Google Workspace for Education tools that we use. These comments can also be transcribed by mote.

For those of you appreciate any equations or compounds in your mote transcriptions to appear nicely formatted mote has 'STEM mode'.

Just enable the Enable STEM Mode and transcription sliders in the mote popup so all your new motes enjoy this feature. To access the mote popup, click on the extension icon in the upper right of your browser window.

If you are wondering about the syntax for equations and compounds is, it's a standard known as AsciiMath.

Read more here → support.mote.com - Using mote STEM mode

Top tips for talking to teenagers about online safety

A useful blog post worth reading titled → Top tips for talking to teenagers about online safety [23 September 2021]

A really good outline of ideas and starting points!

Childnet is a UK-based charity who empower children, young people, and those who support them in their online lives, and its mission is to work with others to make the internet a great and safe place for children and young people.

Their blog is certainly worth following for updates, ideas and resources. You could also follow them on Twitter →

Weekly post #54 - Filter views, dropdown chips and pause before you share online!

How to use Google Sheets Filter Views

If you get shared a Google Sheets spreadsheet with loads and loads of data on it and decide to filter the view - you are doing that for everybody who visits that spreadsheet.

This situation is why 'Filter views' has been added to Google Sheets.

Watch this video →

or

Read more here → Chrome Unboxed - How to use Google Sheets Filter Views to analyze data without screwing it up for everyone else [15 April 2022]

Use new table templates and dropdown chips in Google Docs

You can use dropdown chips, in Google Docs, to easily indicate the status of your document or various project milestones outlined in your document. There are two default dropdown options:

  • Project Status, which includes selections for “Not Started”, “Blocked”, “In Progress” and “Complete”
  • Review Status, which includes selections for “Not Started”, “In Progress”, “Under Review” and “Approved”.

Additionally, you can create a dropdown chip with custom options and colours to best suit your needs.

Google has also adding table templates, which allow you to quickly insert building blocks for common workflows such as a:

  • Launch content tracker
  • Project asset
  • Review tracker
  • Product roadmap

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - Use new table templates and dropdown chips in Google Docs to create highly collaborative documents [2 May 2022]

Level up your padlet skills with a variety of keyboard shortcuts and editing tricks

Mouse shortcuts:

  • Drag and drop a file: Open the post composer with content inside.
  • Drag and drop multiple files: Open multiple post composers, each with one of the files. Click the icon on the right to publish all drafts.
  • Double-click on padlet: Open post composer
  • Double-click on post: Edit post
  • Double-click on padlet title: Edit padlet settings

Keyboard shortcuts:

  • C: Create a new post
  • Cmd/Ctrl + Enter: Publish current post
  • Cmd/Ctrl + Shift + Enter: Publish current post and start a new post
  • Esc: Close post composer

Read more here → padlet.blog - Triumphant tips and tricks [20 April 2022]

From @UNGeneva

Weekly post #52 - Email draft template, a Mote Essential PD byte session, screen time conversations and the Canopy magazine

Canopy magazine - for teachers using Google Workspace for Education

Canopy is a Google for Education partner based in the UK. They recently launched a magazine for teachers using Google Workspace for Education (like we do).

You browse the magazine here and sign up for magazine updates and access to download individual articles.

New email draft template in Google Docs

Google have added a new feature to the Smart Chip menu. In Docs type @ and you will now see the option to add an 'email draft' layout.

"You can mention people in the recipient fields using the @ menu without having to remember their email addresses, and collaborate on the message body using comments and suggestions. When ready to send, simply click the button that is shown alongside an email draft. A Gmail compose window will pop up, with email fields (subject, to, cc, bcc, and body) automatically populated based on the email draft in the document."

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - New email draft template in Google Docs [15 March 2022]

A 'byte sized' introduction to Mote during a departmental meeting

I used the presentation above to structure a 15 minute Essential PD byte session that I lead this week. The aim was to introduce some of the key features of Mote to a department at school - to get them interested in having a go.

If any other departments would like me to come into a meeting and lead a Essential PD byte session - please just ask!

Four conversations to have with older kids and teens about their screen time habits

Common Sense Media - 4 Conversations to Have with Older Kids and Teens About Their Screen Time Habits [15 March 2022] is a useful article focused upon students of secondary age.

The publishing of the article is linked to the release of the The Common Sense Census: Media Use by Tweens and Teens, 2021. More about this in the near future.

Weekly post #51 - Keyboard shortcuts, charts from Forms, moderating posts in Padlet and tags and hashtag literacy

Adding a keyboard shortcut or hotkey for a Chrome Extension

I use a range of Chrome extensions to add links/articles/resources to services such as Trello, Pocket and Raindrop.

Aiming your cursor at a tiny 16-by-16 pixel Chrome extension button amidst possibly 20 others in the extension tray can feel like trying to win a carnival game with the odds firmly stacked against you.

[Source]

It is possible to assign keyboard shortcuts to Chrome extensions.

Here are the steps for adding your own personalized shortcuts for Chrome extensions.

  • In the top right corner of Google Chrome, click the 3-dot expansion menu
  • Expand the More Tools menu
  • Click Extensions
  • Click on the 'burger' in the top left hand corner of the screen and choose 'Keyboard shortcuts'
  • Scroll to the extension of interest and choose a combination of keys with either “Ctrl” or “Ctrl + Shift” and any available key

The extension developer may have added shortcut functionality for more actions within the app. 

Read more here → obie.ai - How to add and remove custom keyboard shortcuts and hotkeys for a Chrome Extension in 5 seconds flat [20 July 2020]

Heading charts from Google Form responses into Docs, Slides and Drawings

You can now embed linked response charts from Google Forms into a Google Doc, Google Slides presentation, or a Google Drawing. When new form responses are received, anyone with the proper permissions can refresh an embedded chart by simply clicking the "Update" button. This eliminates the need to re-copy the chart from the form.

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - Embed linked Google Forms charts into Google Docs, Google Slides, and Google Drawings [1 March 2022]

Padlet - moderating posts

Padlet allows you to moderate all posts on padlet so they must be reviewed by the owner/teacher before they can be published.

Thinking about tags and hashtag literacy

Digital curation is a topic that really engages me at the minute. The effective organisation of all the things we find online that may (or may not) be useful in the future is a challenge and the tools available to help evolve.

Tags and Hashtag Literacy [14 February 2022], by Wesley Fryer, is worth a read to get you thinking about such things and how we should be integrating hashtags and tags into the research skills we teach.

Weekly post #49 – .new, using Padlet Mini and how font choice impacts reading accessibility

.new

Not new but this could improve your ninja like Google Workspace skills.

Type doc.new into the Chrome 'Omnibox' and a new Google Doc will open ready for you to start using. Type sheet.new and guess what... a new Google Sheet is created.

cal.new or meeting.new opens a new Google Calendar event.

Other terms that work →

  • Docs
    • docs.new
    • doc.new
    • document.new
  • Sheets
    • sheets.new
    • sheet.new
    • spreadsheet.new
  • Slides
    • slides.new
    • slide.new
    • presentation.new
  • Forms
    • forms.new
    • form.new
  • Sites
    • site.new
  • Keep
    • keep.new

Check out more → https://goo.gle/Shortcuts

New Navigation bar functions in Google Drive

From the URL bar in Google Drive, you can now quickly access key pages and functions When navigating into the Google Drive web application from the URL bar by hitting the "Tab" key, you can access buttons like "Skip to main content", "Keyboard shortcuts", and "Accessibility feedback"from the bar at the top of the page

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - New Navigation bar functions in Google Drive

Using Padlet to collect, organise and share bookmarks

Padlet

All Foundation teaching staff have access to full padlet accounts.

Padlet is super useful for collecting and organising ideas and resources. This could be done on an individual basis or working with a team of colleagues or class of students.

Installing the Padlet Mini Chrome Extension makes this process really easy. If you have a useful resource open in Chrome all you need to do is click on the extensions icon and a menu asking which of your padlets you would like to add the resource to.

Font choice to support reading

“Google publishing Lexend in August 2019 has really helped bring awareness and spread the message of [the importance of] making reading more accessible to a wider audience,” Shaver-Troup said.

An interesting read about the impact of font choice upon reading outcomes → Google Design - Clean and clear: making reading easier with Lexend [2 February 2022]

Weekly post #48 – The four apps that everybody needs

I am not sure where I came across this approach first →

You should have four apps, one from each of the following areas: calendar, task manager, notes and read it later. This approach should help you be more (digitally) productive. You could use less than four as there are some really useful apps that tick more than one of the areas.

This is what I use - as well as some ideas for following the approach using Google Workspace apps.

Calendar

Google Calendar

Google Calendar is all that is needed here! I use a handful of different calendars - school, family etc - but all scheduled lessons, meetings and my daughter's football practices are here.

I use Fantastical on my iPhone and iPad to display my Google Calendar as I prefer the layout - but the Google Calendar iOS app is also very capable.

Task manager

Todoist

I'm going to say it - your email inbox should not be your 'job list'. An app where you can 'capture' and then organise all the things that you need to do can be hugely beneficial for your well-being.

There is no shortage of task manager apps available! Within the Google Workspace sphere you have Google Tasks and Google Keep. These apps also display scheduled tasks in your Google Calendar. A recent update allows you to manage overdue tasks in Google Calendar.

Personally I use todoist - and have done for a number of years now. I particularly like how the Gmail add-on allows me to quickly turn emails into tasks, the web and iOS apps and the integration with Google Calendar, Fantastical etc.

Notes

Roam Research

Notes in that nice notebook you got for your birthday, others on the back of an envelope and even some in an email you sent to yourself. One place (app) is needed where you make, organise and can quickly find your notes and thoughts.

In Google Workspace you could use a Google Doc. Utilising H1, H2 to give things structure and the document outline to quickly move around. Smart chips will also help you tie various things together.

I have tried GoodNotes on my iPad, various physical Moleskine type notebooks, Bear, Notion and Trello and more. All of them have good bits - but not the coverage that I was looking for.

I am about two weeks into using Roam Research as my note taking app of choice. It is a little geekier than some of the other options and maybe not as pretty. The speed of use and the automatic generation of connections between notes, topics, ideas is what is making it the app I keep going back to. There are 'task manager' options here too - but I am sticking with todoist for that side of things, at the minute.

Read it later

Pocket

You need somewhere to store links. That article that was shared by a colleague that you want to digest at a later date. The website you want to use next time to teach a certain topic to one of your classes. The website of that new restaurant you would like to try. All these links need to be stored and organised.

In Google Workspace you could use Chrome bookmarks and then use the Chrome Bookmark Manager to ensure links are organised into folders. Google Keep, and it's Chrome extension, can also be useful here.

I prefer a dedicated app for such things. I want an app that is 'cross platform' - I can use it on my school Chromebook, my personal iPad, my phone etc.

I use Pocket. There is a Chrome extension so that I can quickly add websites that I am viewing to Pocket - so that later on I can read them and sort them out. With tags etc you can use Pocket as an organised store of your links. I do not tend to do this. For me links get added to Pocket and then every so often I sort them out. Sites that I want to integrate into my teaching resources get added to Trello and things I want to read (in depth) are added to the iOS app Matter.

Weekly post #46 - Cursive, Focus time and teaching with Google Arts & Culture

Chromebook users - it's time to have another look at Cursive

Those teachers who are luckily enough to have a C13 Chromebook should take a moment to explore Cursive again.

To launch Cursive go to → https://cursive.apps.chrome

The initial pen input lag issues that we present at launch seem to have been fixed.

Read more here → chromeunboxed.com - Cursive, Google's Note-taking PWA, has been updated and is actually usable now [16 December 2021]

Google Calendar - Set aside time for focus

Google has added the ability to add 'Focus time' to your calendar "so you can block out and protect your time for heads-down individual work".

Similar to the Out of office event type, focus time has a different appearance on your calendar and includes the option to automatically decline conflicting events.

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - Set aside time for focus in Google Calendar [20 October 2020]

Google Sheets - New intelligent suggestions for formulas and functions

You’ll now see in-line, sequential, context-aware suggestions for formulas and functions when working with data in Google Sheets.

Formula suggestions will make it easier to write new formulas accurately and help make data analysis quicker and easier.

Simply begin inserting a formula in Sheets—suggestions will be automatically displayed and as you continue to type. You can view additional incremental suggestions in the drop-down menu.

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - New intelligent suggestions for formulas and functions in Google Sheets [25 August 2021]

Teaching with Google Arts & Culture

Google have releasing a new Teacher Guide – "a dedicated resource for educators to make learning with Arts & Culture and using the platform in class easier than ever".

"It includes ready-to-use handouts and customizable activity templates, and compliments other popular experiences on Google Arts & Culture that were designed with educators in mind. "

In my opinion Arts & Culture is one of Google's best kept secrets. It is a huge resource of super cool stuff. It is well work 10 minutes of a teachers time - whatever the subject they teach!

How about →