Tech Tips

January 2016: Volume 3- Number 21

Welcome 2016!! Happy New Year!

You'll find a wide variety of apps, articles, and websites in this issue.

What's New This Week

What’s New This Week

Tops of 2015: Digital: The Nielsen Company examined the top digital trends in 2015, including the top U.S. smartphone apps and operating systems. Facebook ranked as the top smartphone app with more than 126 million average unique users each month, an increase of 8% from last year. YouTube was second with over 97 million unique users each month, followed by Facebook Messenger with more than 96 million average unique users each month.

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New in G. Classroom: Saving Time While Grading

New in Classroom: saving time while grading

Posted by Anibal Chehayeb, Google Classroom Software Engineer

"We built Classroom to save teachers time, and we know that grading is one of those tasks that can involve a lot of little time wasters. In fact, students have turned in more than 200 million assignments via Classroom to date, which adds up to a lot of grading hours. Today, we’re launching new features to help make grading a little faster and easier.

  • Export Grades to Google Sheets: In addition to .csv files, you can now export your grades directly to Google Sheets. The Sheets template includes a class average and an average per student. If you have ideas about how we can make this export to Sheets even more useful, please leave us feedback by clicking the question mark at the bottom left of the Classroom page, then choosing “send feedback.”
  • Easier to update grade point scale: We know not all assignments are out of 100 points. You've always been able to change the point value, but a lot of teachers had trouble finding this feature. So we’ve made it easier to change the grading scale to any number you need it to be.
  • Keyboard navigation for entering grades: When you’re entering lots of grades, you need a fast way to navigate from student to student. We’ve added the ability to use the up and down arrows to move directly from the grade entry area for one student to another.
  • Sort by name on grading page: In addition to sorting students by completion status (done, not done), you can now sort by first or last name.
  • And in case you missed it last month, you can now add a private comment for a student when you’re returning their work.

In addition to these grading improvements, we’ve been hard at work on other updates. We’ve polished the look and feel of Classroom on the web with icons to help differentiate items in the stream and added a cleaner look for comments and replies. We’ve also recently updated our Android and iOS mobile apps, so they’ll now load even faster. You can post questions for students on the go, and Android teachers can reuse previous posts. Finally, you can now post a question from the Classroom Share Button, which you can find on some of your favorite educational websites."
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10 Commandments of Innovative Teaching

10 Commandments of Innovative Teaching

"As a new teacher I remember getting into my classroom for the first time. I set up the space like classrooms I had seen before and enjoyed; I got my lesson plans in order; packed the filing cabinets with resources; started to make copies of overhead slides; put together an area for reading and stacked the shelves with books I had picked up in college or from my parents house.

Then the students arrived, and all my plans went out the window. I realized very quickly that the type of teaching I had been exposed to and grew up with, and the type of teaching taught at many undergrad programs…was quickly becoming a past practice. That’s not to say many of the pedagogical and instructional strategies I learned don’t stick with me today (the good ones always will) but these students were different learners than I was…and at the time I was only 22 years old."

Read More

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Snagit: Leave Comments in a Google Doc by Alice Keeler

Snagit: Leave Comments in a Google Doc by Alice Keeler

"One of my favorite EdTech tools is Snagit. I use both the desktop version and the freeChrome extension. The Chrome extension is a great way to leave students audio and visual feedback. Snagit allows you to screen record. Snagit records your voice along with what is on your screen. This allows students to see what you are talking about. Best of all, Snagit saves the feedback to Google Drive."

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IDEA Talks 2015: Stephanie DeMichele, Instructional Technology Coordinator, Wickliffe City Schools

What is Heutogogy?

Heutagogy is the study of self-determined learning … It is also an attempt to challenge some ideas about teaching and learning that still prevail in teacher centred learning and the need for, as Bill Ford (1997) eloquently puts it ‘knowledge sharing’ rather than ‘knowledge hoarding’. In this respect heutagogy looks to the future in which knowing how to learn will be a fundamental skill given the pace of innovation and the changing structure of communities and workplaces.”

Navy SEALS Have a "40 Percent Rule" and It's the Key to Overcoming Mental Barriers

Navy SEALS Have a "40 Percent Rule" and It's the Key to Overcoming Mental Barriers

"About 99 percent of the people who start marathons in the United States finish them. That's an astoundingly high number considering the pain and turmoil that every marathon runner faces. What each runner has in common, says author Jesse Itzler, is that they hit a wall where their mental resources are exhausted. At this point, sheer physical will maintains their strength — and this is the will that everyone has, but we seldom know how to tap into it.

Itzler's way to break through his own mental barriers was to invite a Navy SEAL to live with him and his family for a month. First item on the agenda? Doing over 100 pull-ups. The lesson wasn't about physical fitness, but about mental fitness and how we each have an unused reservoir of strength and determination inside of us."

Surfing the Net with Kids!


"Welcome to my vision of what’s wonderful on the Web. Welcome parents, kids, teens, grandparents, teachers, librarians and the incurably curious. I am a syndicated newspaper columnist, mother, wife and Net surfer supreme (not listed in order of importance, of course).

Since becoming a mom, involving my kids in my love of computers has spurred my interest in children’s use of the Internet. My weekly newspaper columnSurfing the Net with Kids appears in newspapers across the country.

If you are interested in educational activities for your family or students, this is the place to be. Come join me as we maneuver through the always fascinating, and occasionally spectacular, Internet. Send me your ideas for interesting topics, your site recommendations and stories about your own Internet explorations.

For educators interested in integrating technology into their curriculum , I offer my Surfnetkids Printables Club and my Tech Tips blog."

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Teaching Long Multiplication with Google Sheets

SCS Instructional Technology Information

Contact me if you have any questions or would like help using these tools.

The Turner Time Daily