Aug 21, 2016

Google Apps Ideas for Elementary Teachers

This week, I will be sharing Google Apps tips with some of the elementary school teachers in our district.  I thought I would also share it here in the event that it benefits someone else.

Look for tips on Google Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides & Forms.  Slides include links to Video Tutorials and Sample Material.



Aug 17, 2016

Google Forms Update: Add Images Directly to Questions

Google released an update to Forms today that is a huge deal!  In the past, if you wanted to add an image to a Form (quiz), you could do so, but the image would be separate from the question or question set in your quiz.  The problem with this is that if you want to use the Shuffle Question Order option, you couldn't, because you could never be sure that the two would appear next to each other as they should.

Now, Google has added a feature right alongside your question, allowing you to insert an image directly into the question.  

Watch this tutorial video to see how...


Google Classroom Updates: Posts and Parent Email

Today, Google released a few updates to Google Classroom to help teachers get a jump on organization and parent communication for the new school year.

The first of these updates affects Posts.  Now when you post an announcement or assignment in Google Classroom, you'll have the option of adding a Topic to your post.  This means that if you like to keep assignments organized by unit or chapter, you can do so by adding Topics.

The second update is a game changer in terms of parent communication.  For the longest time, teachers and parents were bothered by the fact that there was no way for parents to see announcements and student work in Google Classroom.  One tip I used to give teachers involved the use of the calendar in Google Classroom (see this post).  Now, teachers have the ability to invite parents by email, to receive a weekly update on student work and announcements.  Just go to the Students menu, click the switch Guardian Email Summaries, and then click Invite Guardians next to a child's name.  

To see these updates, watch this quick tutorial.



Aug 16, 2016

Hangouts On Air, Google Hangouts and Google Duo

If you are just getting the hang of Google Hangouts and love Hangouts On Air, don't get too attached.  Hangouts On Air will soon be replaced with YouTube Live.  The switch will take place on September 12th, and users who are accustomed to Hangouts On Air will still have access to their old recordings, but new "on air" videos will soon have a new home.  

This announcement was very quiet, but here are a few things to know as far as I can tell:


  • New instructions for creating a hangout on air can be found at this link.
  • Google Hangouts will still exist as a standalone and as a plugin focusing on business users.
  • Google Duo - a Video Call app for Android - will soon be released as competition to Facetime.
Stay tuned as more details will be released over time.




Jul 30, 2016

A Quick Tour of the New Google Sites

As I said earlier this Summer, Google has released a new, updated version of Google Sites.  This update is not yet available to GAFE users yet, but it promises some awesome features that Google Sites users will love.

Specifically, just this week, Google announced more new features that have been added, including:

  • Google Analytics integration - you can now track your site!
  • Header Options - Text Only or Banner Style Header
  • Awesome Table integration - Users can now embed Awesome Table
  • Publishing to the web -Users can now publish sites to the web.
To take a look at what the New Google Sites looks like at this time, watch this quick tour...