Articles in category "Weekly post"

Weekly post #15 - Raise your hand, Read&Write, timers and that new look your Gmail has!

Four things to check out

Read&Write for Google Chrome - A how to guide for students

This week it has been great to see a teacher using Read&Write with a whole class. They were using the highlight tool and then the 'Collect and Clear Highlights' feature to extract the highlighted text into a new Google Document.

Here is a handy how-to guide to get students up and running with the most popular features in Read&Write for Google.

Timer/countdown in Meet Breakdown Rooms

Google Meet breakout Room Timer

You can now set up a timer for a breakout session. Participants will see a banner to keep track of how much more time they have in the breakout room. They’ll also be alerted when there are 30 seconds left so that they can wrap up the discussion and, when time is up, participants will be prompted to go back to the main call.

Virtually raise your hand to ask a question in Meet

Moderator view of raised hands

You can now 'virtually' raise your hand in Google Meet. To raise your hand, click on the “Raise Hand” button on the bottom bar. Once the button is pressed, it will change to a “Lower Hand” button, which can be clicked to lower your hand.

When a participant raises their hand, the meeting’s moderator will see a hand icon in their video preview. If the moderator is presenting in another tab, they’ll get a sound notification when someone raises their hand. The moderator will also be able to see all raised hands in the order they were raised in the meeting participant list panel to help them address questions accordingly. The moderator can lower a specific person’s hand or lower all hands.

Read more here → Virtually raise your hand to ask a question in Google Meet

An integrated workspace

It would seem that it has arrived... an integrated workspace experience that brings Chat, Meet, and Gmail together on desktop and mobile.

Gmail across web and mobile now feature fours distinct components:

  • Mail, which has not changed and is the same Gmail experience you know.
  • Chat, which allows users to message individuals and small groups directly.
  • Rooms, which are spaces that include shared chat, files, and tasks to help groups more easily work on projects.
  • Meet, which features upcoming meetings that you can view and join.

Read more here → Introducing your new home for work in G Suite

Weekly post #14 - Read&Write, Google Chat, Kahoot and Google Sheets

Four things to check out

Read&Write for Google Chrome

All staff and students at Campus des Nations has access to Read&Write for Google Chrome. For the extension to appear and be available - you need to be logged into Chrome using your school account and have sync turned on.

Check out the video below for some of the features. Personally I find the highlighting tool useful and have used it with MYP and DP students of all abilities.

Schedule Google Calendar events from Google Chat

This hasn't appeared on my account yet - but it should be with us any day soon.

You will be able to schedule meetings in Calendar directly from Chat conversations. You’ll see a new icon in the conversation’s compose bar.

Clicking on the icon will start a draft calendar event with the attendees from the chat. You can then customize the invite (including attendees) before sending it to guests.

Read more here → Schedule Google Calendar events from Google Chat

Getting started with Google Sheets

A useful video from Danny Nicholson about Google Sheets. Those with a good memory may remember that Danny came to Nations and worked with us during a PED day before we started our BYOL journey.

Google Meet and Kahoot!

Some useful advice on using Kahoot quizzes within Google Meet here → Google Hangouts Meet and Kahoot! help teachers and employees connect and instruct online.

Weekly post #13 - accepting 'knocks', Office editing mode, the Kahoot app and linking to a text fragment

Four things to check out

Accept 'knocks' in bulk

Accept 'knocks' in bulk

You can now accept all pending 'knocks' in bulk into your Google Meet. Admitting students all at once helps limit interruptions during the video call.

Read more here → Accept knocks in bulk in Google Meet

Editing Office files from your Drive

Google have changing the default editing mode for Microsoft Office files in Google Drive on the web. Now, when you double-click on an Office file, it will open directly in Office editing mode.

Read more about 'Office editing mode' here.

New study modes in the Kahoot app

Study modes in the Kahoot app for iOS and Android a brings a new, self-paced study experience to learners with four different ways to review content, get more practice with difficult topics and prepare for tests. These modes can be used with both previously played kahoots as well as new kahoots.

Read more here → Study with Kahoot!: New modes in the Kahoot! app empower learners to self-study

Linking to a text fragment

This rather useful Chrome extension allows for easily creating a special link to the currently selected text on a page via the context (right-click) menu. When opening such a special link, the browser will scroll the selected text into view and highlight it.

Install the Chrome extension from here → Link to Text Fragment

Weekly post #12 - using (most of) what G Suite Enterprise for Education has to offer

Four things to check out

All teaching staff now have (continued) use of G Suite Enterprise for Education. The main tools that this service offers you are to be found in Google Meet - and this post will explore the four main tools below.

Beyond breakout rooms, polls, Q&A and automatic attendance registers - you can lead larger meetings (up to 250 participants), you can live streaming to 100,000 in-domain ( viewers and you can record meetings that you lead.

You should not be recording meetings without good reason and the permission of all those involved in the meeting.

Breakout rooms

You, as a Meet organizer with a Enterprise for Education account, can use breakout rooms to divide participants into smaller groups during video calls in Meet. You can also jump between breakout rooms to monitor and participate in discussions.

While only event creators (you with your Enterprise for Education account) can create breakout rooms, anyone with a Google account that is joining from the web or through the Meet app can be a participant.

Read more here → Use breakout rooms in Google Meet


With polls in Meet, you can set up multiple questions, viewable to only you, and launch the poll when it’s timely during the online lesson or meeting.

Once a poll is closed, you will receive a report with the tally of the results to make it easy to refer back to. You can then share the results of the poll so that participants can see a summarized bar chart. You will also automatically receive an email containing an export of the poll data in Google Sheets.

Read more here → Conduct polls in Google Meet


Probably more structured than using the Chat function - participants can submit and upvote their favorite questions without disrupting the flow of a Meet. Q&A needs to be turned on by the teacher, for each lesson, as it is disabled by default. Participants can ask questions and interact with other participants’ questions by upvoting. When the meeting ends, hosts will automatically receive an email containing an export of all submitted questions, so they can follow up on unanswered questions.

Read more here → Ask participants questions in Google Meet

Attendance tracking

I am not 100% that this feature has fully rolled out to International School of Geneva - Campus des Nations staff yet... first person to send me an attendance CSV report gets a prize!

After a video call with at least 5 participants, you as the meeting organizer will receive an email with an attached attendance CSV report with the following info:

  • Participant’s name
  • Participant’s email
  • Length of time participant was in the Meet, including timestamps of when they first joined and when they left the call. If someone joins and leaves the call more than once, multiple timestamps won’t be listed, but their overall call duration will be included.

Weekly post #11 - ⌘/Ctrl + D, default video playback option in Google Slides and how are your students dealing with their email inboxes?

Four things to check out

Google Meet keyboard shortcuts

If you are ever wondering about the keyboard shortcuts for a Google Workspace (aka G Suite) application - try opening the application and pressing '?'.

The most useful keyboard shortcut in Google Meet is probably → ⌘/Ctrl + d which mutes and unmutes the microphone.

Read more here → Google Workspace Learning Center - Use Meet keyboard shortcuts.

Google Meet Training - from Google


Google has added some interesting Google Meet training resources to the Teacher Center with videos, PDFs etc. They are worth checking out if you are 'new' to Meets - or if you are reflecting upon how they can be used effectively as a remote-learning tool.

Read more here → Google for Education Teacher Center - Google Meet Training.

New default video playback option in Google Slides

Google has changed the default way videos play when you present in Google Slides. Now, the video will start playing when you click to advance the presentation. Previously, the presenter had to specifically click on the video to start playing.

Read more here → Google Workspace Updates - New default video playback option in Google Slides.

Student email overload

If you have a chance ask some of your students to show you their Gmail inbox. Are they coping with the amount of email they are getting? Can they see the 'important' emails for all the notifications which are generated by ManageBac and Google Classroom.

This is an interesting read upon the topic → Moving at the Speed of Creativity - Student Email Overload and GMail Filters.

Weekly post #10 - Jamboard in Meet, Kahoot question types and Google Workspace

Four things to check out

Digital whiteboarding integration in Google Meet

With the new Google Jamboard and Google Meet integration, you can now create or open an existing jam while on a Meet video call. This digital whiteboarding integration means you can use the Jamboard virtually to host collaborative brainstorming sessions with your coworkers or students in real-time, even when you can’t be in the same room.

Host collaborative brainstorms with new digital whiteboarding integration in Google Meet

The video above is by Richard Byrne who is well worth following for edtech updates and insights.

20+ tips and ideas for using Jamboard in the classroom

Check out this blog post from 'Ditch that textbook' → How to use Jamboard in the classroom: 20+ tips and ideas.

All International School of Geneva - Campus des Nations faculty and students have Jamboard enabled.

Kahoot's different question types

'Traditional' most people think that Kahoot is all about multiple choice questions. There are actually 4 different question types → quiz (multiple choice), true or false, type answer and puzzle. The type answer and puzzle question types are 'premium' and available by being part of the school's subscription.

Read more here → Kahoot Help and Support Center Question types

G Suite becomes Google Workspace

Read more here → Introducing Google Workspace

Weekly post #9 - Kahoot, 'Date + Big + Small' and citations in Google Docs

Four things to check out

Our Kahoot 'team'

The Campus des Nations team subscription is now all set up with Kahoot. We have access to the Premium+ features for the coming 365 days.

One of the reasons for the subscription is the collaborative focus it gives us as a 'team'.

The team element allows for easy sharing across the school and within departments. Have a quick look at the folders that have already been set up and consider adding your Kahoots to them for others to use.

Date + Big + Small

Giving files sensible names is a skill that we need to keep revisiting with our students (and ourselves).

I have been using the Date + Big + Small as an approach with the students I am currently working with. Date could be the day, the month or just the year. Big could be the subject or the unit. Small would be the title of the piece of work. So → Oct 20 - Unit 1 - Megacity Growth.

Google Terms Glossary

"Here’s a glossary of the tools we are using, and some extra resources, with explanations of how your child might be using them, along with a few video tutorials and additional resources linked at the end."


Manage citations in Google Docs

Google has added a native citations manager to Google Documents. Using this feature, users can easily insert in-text citations and create a bibliography in the MLA, APA, or Chicago (author-date) styles. Sources types supported include books, book sections, websites, journal articles and newspaper articles.

Read more here → Add citations and a bibliography

Weekly post #8 – Soundtrap and 'should we be showing Netflix in school?'

Three things to check out

Should we be showing Netflix in school?

No... unless...

We work with ProLitteris to be able to work with copyrighted materials in school - such as the playing of DVDs etc.

ProLitteris has advised us that although the viewing of Netflix documentations in the classroom in Switzerland is permitted under copyright law (any use of a work by a teacher and his class for educational purposes being allowed by copyright law), we should be aware that such a use might violate the Netflix Terms of Use.

Some Netflix Original educational documentaries are available for one-time educational screenings. To find out which titles are available for educational screenings, go to the "Only On Netflix" section of From there, navigate to "All Alphabetical". Titles that are available for educational screening will display the a certain 'grant of permission on their details page' the wording of which can be found here.

For example - The Social Dilemma does not show that 'grant of permission'.

EDU in 90: Explore in Google Slides

EDU in 90 is a month vlog from Google for Education and is well worth subscribing to in YouTube.

The most recent clip focuses on Google Slides and the use of the Explore feature.


A students in Years 8 to 11 now have a Soundtrap account.

Soundtrap empowers students and teachers to explore creative sound recording in all subjects, for all ages and ability levels.

Soundtrap for Education

If you would like to discuss how Soundtrap could be used in your subject area - please get in contact.

Weekly post #7 - Blurring your background and opening what you want

Three things to check out

Blur your background in Google Meet

To help limit distractions during lessons (and meetings), you can now blur the background of your video in Google Meet. When it’s turned on, Meet will intelligently separate you from the background, blurring your surroundings while keeping you clear and in focus.

I feel that some of our students will really appreciate the feature, should we return to remote-learning, to keep a bit more of their home private.

The ability to filter out disruptive background noise in Google Meet should also be arriving soon.

Read more here → Blur your background in Google Meet

Google Chrome - On start-up...

All faculty at Campus des Nations should be logged in and syncing with Google Chrome. There are all sorts of advantages including the ability for the school to install (on your behalf) extensions.

We recently removed the controls the school has over the 'On start-up' options. This allows you to decide which webpages open when you launch Chrome.

Here are some suggested pages →

Read more about setting your homepage and startup page here →

Google Meet help sheet

Written to reflect most of the most recent updates to Google Meet and focusing on educator use.

Weekly post #6 - Google Meet changes and the 4 C's of Collaboration, Creativity, Communication and Critical Thinking

Two things to check out

In-built 'Tiled' view up to 49 people

Tiled view

You can now see up to 49 people at the same time in the auto and tiled layout options in Google Meet.

In addition, Google have added the ability to see yourself as a tile on the call. When you hover over your thumbnail in the top right corner, you’ll now see the option to add or remove yourself from the grid. These changes are only visible to you.

Read more here → See up to 49 people, including yourself, in Google Meet

New 'Host controls'

Host controls

Hosts (meeting creators and calendar owners) of meetings now have new meeting safety controls to manage who can share their screen and who can send chat messages within the meeting.

To control who can share their screen in a meeting, hosts can turn "Share their screen" on or off. By default, this setting will be on.

To control who can send chat messages in a meeting, hosts can turn "Send chat messages" on or off. By default, this setting will be on.

Read more here → Adding present and chat Meet moderator capabilities for education users

4 C's - Collaboration, Creativity, Communication and Critical Thinking

The 4 C's of @1st century skills are referenced within the Google Certified Educator programme. Check out one or both of the videos below to get an overview of the 4 C's approach.