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Showing posts from November, 2016

An Excellent Chrome Extension for Helping Students with Dyslexia

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November is Clicks for a Cause Month! Check out how you can help a child in need below.  According to the Mayo Clinic (2016), more than 3 million Americans are diagnosed with Dyslexia each year. Dyslexia can pose learning difficulties to students (and adults) with reading, writing, spelling, thinking and understanding. Chances are, you will or currently have a student with Dyslexia. How can you design a learning environment where ALL of your students can succeed? Open-Dyslexic is an open source font designed to help increase readability for students (or adults) with Dyslexia. The free OpenDyslexic Chrome extension overrides all fonts on webpages with the OpenDyslexic font, and formats pages to be more easily readable.  How does it work?  Once you install the Chrome Extension, you can turn OpenDyslexic on/off by clicking on its icon in in the top-right corner of your browser.  Here is what a typical Google Search result looks like:  Here is what it looks like once

Use Google Slides, Keynote, or PowerPoint for Flashcards?

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November is Clicks for a Cause Month! Check out how you can help a child in need below.  If you use traditional flashcards in your classroom, then you realize that they offer a one-dimensional and one-size-fits all approach. They are perfect for students who have strong literacy and vocabulary skills; however, what about students who need a little extra help? Free tools like Quizlet offer speech-to-text capabilities, which are extremely helpful for students who need to "hear" the word being spoken; however, what about students who need visuals? Tools like Google Slides offer the capability of using images or embedding YouTube videos into your slides. Here is how you can make your own flashcards using Google Slides,  Keynote, or PowerPoint. Step 1: Create Your Slides Enter your definition on your slide and your vocabulary term in the presenter's notes section (or vice versa).  Here is an example that I created to define UDL. Step 2: Add Different Ways to Repres

Save Time and Energy with Google Classroom's Annotation Feature

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November is Clicks for a Cause Month! Check out how you can help a child in need below.  If you have used Google Classroom lately, you may have noticed a new feature. You can now annotate and provide handwritten feedback on student assignments on the iOS and Android version of the App. Although many teachers use the commenting features of Google Classroom, you can now annotate student papers and provide written feedback to students. This is a great feature for teachers who want to provide quick feedback. How does it work?  Use the Classroom iOS or Android App to open up a submitted students assignment.  Once you open up the student assignment, choose the pencil icon (top-right corner of your screen) to open up the annotation feature.  Begin writing or drawing on the document.  After you are finished click the Save icon (in the top-right corner of your screen).  When students open up their assignment, they will see the original copy of their assignment and a PDF c

5 Reasons You Should Visit the Teacher's Lounge (PBS Teacher's Lounge)

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November is Clicks for a Cause Month! Check out how you can help a child in need below.  When I was a young teacher, my mentor gave me the advice to stay away from the teacher's lounge! My mentor told me that it was a place where negativity thrived and new ideas died. Ironically, I am here today to tell you to visit the teacher's lounge - The PBS Teacher's Lounge - that is. In the era of social media, it is important for like-minded educators to connect and inspire learning. The PBS Teacher's Lounge is the perfect way to connect, share ideas, learn from peers, find daily inspiration and access tools and resources to enhance your work in the classroom. Here are 5 reasons why you should use this amazing tool! #1 - Get Fresh Ideas I am always looking for new ways to do things. The PBS Teachers Lounge is filled with resources for and created by you. For example, how do you teach in the Age of Trump? How do you engage your community through Instagram? Check

Upload Files and Images to Google Forms!

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November is Clicks for a Cause Month! Check out how you can help a child in need below.  Did you notice that you can use Google Forms as a way for users to upload files and images? If you are a Google Apps for Education (GAFE) user, then you might want to check out the latest update to Forms called File Upload.  NOTE: This feature  currently does not work on personal Google accounts.  How Does It Work?  Creating a Google Form File Upload Question Create a new question in your Google Form and select the new File Upload feature. As you normally would for any question, provide instructions for users.  Uploading Files  Send out your Google Form like you normally would. When users come to the File Upload question, they will be prompted to upload any file from their computer or Google Drive (from 1 MB to 10 GB).   Where Do The Files Go?  When someone uploads a file or image to your Google Form, a folder is automatically created in Goo

4 Ways to Unleash the Power of Audio with Clyp

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I love finding new tools to record audio! I just came across an excellent post by the Educational Technology and Mobile Learning blog called Clyp. Clyp is an audio recording application that is available on iOS, Android, and as a web app. Users can use Clyp to upload or record up to 100 MB worth of audio content for free! Once your content is uploaded, Clyp creates a URL that you can share or embed on a website. This is an excellent tool for younger students because there is no sign in required. It reminds me very much of Vocaroo . How could I use this?  Thinking Prompts - Instead of a writing prompt, why not give students a thinking prompt? Give students the option of typing text OR using Clyp to record a 30-second response to a question.  Once students publish their response, they can share the link in the commenting section of Google Classroom, Schoology, or Edmodo. You could even have them add the link to a Padlet note.  Book Trailers - Movie trailers get movie goe

7 Ways to Help Students Master The Writing Process

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The writing process is a challenging process for anyone. What scaffolds and supports do you have in place to help students during the writing process? 1.  AnswerGarden - perhaps you have a class writing assignment and you need a list of key terms. Why not begin with a brainstorm of keywords? AnswerGarden helps you create a class word cloud of terms that may be associated with the writing assignment. 2.  Wolfram | Alpha - is an excellent source for finding information about a topic. It does not show you popular websites like Google and Bing, but gives you the facts and other types of information that you need. Do you need a definition, synonym or other interesting facts? Then this search engine is for you! 3.  Google Voice Typing is a great tool for students to use if they have a physical disability or just need to get the words from their head to paper. Use this free tool while using the Chrome Browser and Google Docs. If you are using an iPad, simply use the voice typing fea