Friday, May 6, 2016

Draftback: Play back the revision history of any Google Doc you can edit - in video

Wondering about that last change you made to a Google Doc? It's possible to look up the revision history, but Draftback makes it a breeze, essentially playing back all your changes for you, keystroke by keystroke. Here's how. You can even make the playback public to play on a site, showing the whole writing process.

Ideas for use reviewing Student Google Docs shared with you with edit rights:
Draftback lets you play back the revision history of any Google Doc you have edit rights to. It's like going back in time to look over your student's shoulder as they write.

Monday, May 2, 2016

How to Use YouTube Video Editor to Edit Video on YouTube

You can use Video Editor tools to put together clips to create new videos and publish them to YouTube with one click. All of your uploads are added automatically to the Video Editor. Some of the things you can do with Video Editor are: 
  • Combine multiple videos and images you've uploaded to create a new video.
  • Trim your clips to custom lengths.
  • Add music to your video from a library of approved tracks.
  • Customize clips with special tools and effects.

Get to the Video Editor
You can get to the Video Editor at or by following these steps:

  1. Log in to your YouTube account.
  2. In the top right, click Upload.
  3. On the right under "Video Editor," click Edit.
  4. Choose from the Video Editor tools listed below.
  5. When you're done creating your project, click Create video.

Add clips
All of your uploads are added automatically to the Video Editor and can be used as a clip. Up to 50 clips and 500 images can be added to a project to create a new video.

  1. Find the clip or image you want to add in the upper left of the Video Editor. Click the camera icon to browse images.
  2. Use one of the ways to add the clip or image:
    *For existing projects, move your mouse over the clip or image you want to add, then click the + icon.
    *When you start a new project, drag the clip or image to the bottom of the timeline at the bottom of the editor (where it says Drag videos here).

Thursday, March 17, 2016

ORIGO ONE - Breaking Math Concepts into Pieces ~ 1 minute videos

ORIGO ONE is a series of videos that show you how to create light bulb moments for your students. These videos take a mathematics concept and break it into pieces that are easy to understand and only take a minute to watch.

This ORIGO ONE series of videos shows you how to create light bulb moments for your students. These videos take a mathematics concept and break it into pieces that are easy to understand and only take a minute to watch.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

#NCTies16 Session: Creating a Blended Environment with Google Classroom

This week, the Instructional Technology Specialist of Stanly County Schools will travel to Raleigh, North Carolina for the 2016 NCTIES Conference. The SCS "ITS" will present "Climbing the Google Ladder" which includes information on how a district as small as SCS has been able to build a 1:1 Chromebook environment and a digital learning platform for 21st-century students.  This session is scheduled for Thursday, 3/3/2016 at 3:15 pm in Marriott University C.  I was personally honored to be selected as a speaker to present, "Create a blended learning environment with Google Classroom" which is scheduled for Thursday 3/3/2016 at 1:15 pm in room 301B.  NCTIES routinely attracts some many well known educational speakers, and I am very excited to participate and gather more educational technology resources, training, and tips! If you are attending #NCTIES16 this week, please be sure to attend my session.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Your Voice to Format and Edit Your Google Docs

Type, edit and format with your voice in Docs - no keyboard needed

Type with Your Voice - Docs editor help


You Can Now Use Your Voice to Format and Edit Your Google Docs

Wednesday, February 24, 2016 – Interactive Digital Worksheets and Writing Assignments

Wizer.Me is a free tool for teachers to make cool, interactive online worksheets for their students. Interactive resources online can provide your students a blended learning experience without a lot of legwork in advance.

You can quickly create an account by signing in with Google.  The website is incredibly simple to use and offers you so many fantastic options.  There are several styles and backgrounds to choose from or you can always upload your own image.   You can create your "worksheet" by choosing from the basic options such as multiple choice, open question, or matching.  However, you can also add an image for your students to label, include a video for them to watch, a chart to fill in, a link to an article to read, fill in the blanks, embed a video, image, chart, Google maps, and much more!  There are even many Wizer.Me assignments already created by other connected educators that share what they have created.   If you click on the "featured worksheets" button, you will be taken to a webpage filled with assignments ready to be used.  Be sure to explore many of the available worksheets that you can use with your students.

Getting Started:  Teachers create an account at, create an assignment, and assign to their class.  Teachers need to be sure to sign up as a "Teacher" - students will sign in/sign up as "student".   Options to assign include Google Classroom or direct link.  Students will need accounts as well.  Each assignment is given a unique pin number and teachers also have the option to share the assignment globally.  After completing an assignment, students can receive immediate feedback if the teacher has set it up. Otherwise, will grade some items for the teacher automatically, then when the teacher finishes the assessment, they have the option to send student feedback.
Take a peek and find inspiration from other teachers that have shared their creations in their community gallery.

FYI: Generally, there are 2 kinds of links - one with 'learn' in it, which is for students to work on and it had the PIN code in it (the last 5 digits). The other link has 'preview' in it and is used for announcements, share with colleagues or on social media, etc.
So first, make sure you're using the right link for each usage. 
If a teacher is getting a message to enter a PIN code it means he/she has signed in as a student to test the worksheet, and her account has been switched to a student one. She can try log out and log back in and it should solve this problem.
*If she initially signed up to for the first time as a student logging out won't work, so please contact help support by clicking on their help button and let them know that your account needs to be reset as a "teacher".

Monday, December 7, 2015

Plickers ~ Quick and Easy Formative Assessment

Plickers, which stands for “paper clickers,” are an easy, technology enhanced way to quickly gather formative assessment data from your students without requiring a student device. Students utilize a specially designed card, much like a QR code, that is assigned specifically to each student to provide their answers in the form of a multiple choice responses (A, B, C, D) to the teacher who scans the responses with an iDevice or Android device. Data from the students is instantly available on the teacher device and can be displayed to students through the Plickers website where the data is also stored for review purposes. As a teacher, you can easily gather formative data from your students, for free, using this powerful tool, here’s how…

How To Get Started

Getting started with Plickers is a quick and easy process. In order to get started you first need to download the Plickers App to your device. You can download the apps using the links below. Note that for the iPad you may need to filter by “iPhone only” and then search for Plickers in order to show it in the App Store.
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Once you have downloaded and installed the app you will need to also print out a set of student cards. These can be accessed for free on the Plickers website. Print the Standard Set or check out other options on their cards page. It is advisable to print the student cards on card stock but for an initial test run regular paper will work; the heavier paper simply holds up longer. Do not laminate the cards as the glare will cause problems with scanning.
Once you have the Plickers printed and the app installed it is time to register for an account. This can be done via the app or the website but since we are going to use the website to quickly set-up classes and questions it is advised to start there. You will then login to your app with the username and password you set-up on the website and your app will sync with the Plickers website.
Head to the Plickers website, choose “Sign Up” and complete the easy registration form.
Once logged in to your account choose the box “Add new class” to add your first class.
2014-11-17_12-22-47Complete the class information and then start entering student names. Enter a name and press enter and the site will automatically assign a card to the student you just typed. Quick and easy! It is advisable to enter student names alphabetically in order to make distributing cards easier, but this is not required. You can enter names based upon your seating chart for instance.
With your first class set up it is time to enter your first question. Click on “Library” at the top of the page and then click in the box marked “Type your question here.” When you do the box will expand to allow you to enter your question, possible answers and select your correct answer. Notice that it also lets you toggle between multiple choice and true/false options. Click save and you are almost ready to ask your first question. Another piece of advice: enter the standard for your question first to make tracking assessed standards easier.
Your final step is to assign the question to a class. This is done by clicking on a question and then choosing “Add to plan…” and choosing the class you set up earlier. Note that you can add the same question to multiple classes.
It is now time to ask your class your first question. Log in to the mobile app and choose your class and then the question you wish to ask. If you have the website up on your whiteboard or projector you can choose “Live View” and as you change questions in the mobile app the website will display the question you are currently asking making it easy for students to see the question and respond. Students will respond by holding up their Plicker oriented so that the letter of the answer they choose is at the top. You will then touch the camera icon in the mobile app and scan the room with the camera of your device. As you scan the program recognizes each distinct code and its orientation translating this into quick and easy formative data for you. As you scan you will see instantly on the class chart in the app each student turns green or red depending on whether they answered correctly or not. In the “Live View” a student can tell they have been scanned when a blue check appears next to their name. When you are finished scanning cards you can click on “Graph” to quickly show students a bar graph of how the class answered.
That’s it! All you have to do now is enter the questions you would like quick feedback on as you plan each lesson and Plickers will be ready to quickly assess each question and provide you with data on not only how the class overall scored, but how each individual student scored on each question. Perfect for exit ticket type assessment, and for differentiating instruction based on how individual students are understanding the material. Kids love to answer questions with Plickers, probably due to the novelty of it, but it does engage them and sharing the bar chart of how the class does inspire them to try their best to answer each question correctly. And best of all, the entire thing is absolutely free (unless you buy a set of laminated cards). More information and help can be found on the Plickers website under Help.

Suggested Uses

  • Use like an exit ticket at the end of class.
  • Use during instruction to gather data on student understanding and to inform subsequent instruction.
  • Use to quickly poll your students and share the results.

Why It Matters (Teaching Rubric)

It is important for teachers to provide Multiple Assessments Aligned to Goals and Learning Outcomes in order to be able to effectively measure progress toward learning objectives. With Plickers a teacher is given the ability to provide both formative (and summative, if desired) assessments during classroom instruction and to have data on every student, and share overall data with students. Most importantly, it provides the teacher with some necessary information to inform what to plan for instruction and differentiate to meet the needs of every child in the classroom.