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Showing posts from 2017

A Collaborative Playground in Google Sites

Freedom! The powerful thing about using Google in the classroom has always been the collaborative nature of their products. If you are a lover of GSuite, do you recall the first time you experienced a collaborative doc? My mind was absolutely blown away by the thought of not having to email a document to my colleague and getting it back. The multiple versions of a document created a nightmare! I was instantly done with the email tag with attachments. I felt like William Wallace for a moment and wanted to yell, "freedom!" Okay, maybe not that dramatic, but it was awesome. 
Out of Site(s) 2017 was an interesting year of changes for Google's lineup, but my favorite was the update to Google Sites. A user could get used to the old version and it ended up not being too bad as long as you put the time into learning it, but the new Google Sites is intuitive, clean, and simple. Teachers actually love the fact that there are not a million font or color choices. "Just pick on…

Life After the Interactive Board

Is It Worth It? Long has it been that companies like SMART or Promethean have dominated display options in the classroom. SMART really revolutionized how we as teachers demonstrate or share content with students. Freedom is what it represented in those days. The idea that a teacher to could grab content from about anywhere and manipulate it before their students' eyes. It enhanced our productivity as content creators. 
Technology is ever changing. Students and society is ever changing. Therefore, the way we teach should change was well. Once schools began exploring options for all students to have a device, the need for the teacher at the front of the room (The Sage on the Stage) began to dwindle. Suddenly the students had access to thousands of teachers, and personalized instruction became a reality. If a student wants to know more on any topic of their liking, the resources are just a click away. This landscape causes me to question the need to spend thousands of dollars for te…

Google Forms Question by Question Grading

ISTE 2017 The ISTE conference never disappoints. It is a great opportunity to be oriented with great pedagogy, new technologies, and awesome people to build up your personal learning network. As far as GSuite for Education news goes, one of the awesome additions is the ability to do question by question grading in Google Forms. Forms have certainly transitioned much in the last year or so with an entirely new makeover, the edition of quizzes, automatic grading, and now the ability to grade question by question. It is a small update, but it is mighty in the sense that it fills a void that people have desired since the built-in quizzes debuted.  Question by Question Grading In the previous version of Google Forms quizzes, multiple choice and short answer questions could be graded automatically. The short answer has some issues of being unreliable. If a student spells a response incorrectly or add/misses capitalization, the answer is automatically counted as incorrect. This would cause …

Be Internet Awesome with Google

Digital Citizenship Great resources for teaching students to be Internet savvy are here! It is a necessity to be smart about security and digital footprint conscious. We are molding the future of Internet users each and every day. It doesn't matter if you are in a 1:1 technology environment, have carts of devices you wheel into your classroom, or if you take your students to the computer lab once a week, training students to be wise online is a part of what we do. 
Google just launched a new site with more opportunities for students and teachers alike. If you visit beinternetawesome.withgoogle.com, users can access a wide range of resources.  InterlandInterland is an online game for elementary students to navigate through some of the tough questions we face with the troubles of the Internet. As students navigate through Interland, they explore the concepts of being kind online, secure passwords, information protection, and being Internet savvy. Each world focuses on a different a…

Storytelling Slides

A Great Podcast I'm always on the lookout for a great podcast. If I'm traveling to and from work or if I have a long drive to a conference or workshop, a podcast is a great way to make the most of my time. Just over a year ago, I wrote a blog post about the Bam Radio Network and the great options they have available in short, 10-minute podcast sessions. I didn't list the session there, but Matt Miller (Ditch that Textbook) had a great series by the title: Hook 'em! He has since moved on to a much longer platform and has teamed up with Kasey Bell (Shake Up Learning). This one is the Google Teacher Tribe. If you have 45 minutes to give it a listen, I'd highly recommend it. My favorite times are while I'm driving or going for a run. It is a simple way for me to make the most of my time.
Last week, I was attending the IGNITE conference Lafayette, IN. Since this was a 2.5-hour drive, I was able to listen to quite a few podcasts and catch up on the Google Teacher Tr…

Lance Yoder's Hyperslides

The Indestructible Hyperdoc This has been the year of Google Slides for me. The entire year has had some focus on it as it is such a versatile tool. Teachers can use it to put together learning resources, have students respond and interact with it, and even create collaborative spaces. The real key as to why Google Slides has been such a success this year is the ability to create spaces where students cannot easily manipulate your template. So often using Google Docs can cause the teacher frustrations as the students will drag items around or even delete content. By editing the master in Google Slides, they are virtually indestructible. (Click here for an example of how to edit the master slides to customize your content.)
This process all really kicked off in October at the ICE Conference. I presented on the Indestructible Hyperdoc and since then have been asked to present on the topic at other locations. I have seen quite a few individuals presenting on the same topic as using Goog…

Visually Appealing Google Forms

Depth of Knowledge Mr. Bounds, the assistant principal of Angola Middle School, is really challenging his staff to contemplate the types of assessment his teachers administer. By utilizing Webb's Depth of Knowledge, teachers are analyzing the tasks given to students and thinking of ways to increase the rigor to get a more accurate representation of student learning. I'm not attempting to play "buzzword bingo" here, but technology has certainly played a big part in the need to question how to assess students. I've posted in the past in regard to Google Forms that my greatest concern is that questions being asked can be looked up with a simple Google search. Certainly, that doesn't accurately represent the student's knowledge on a subject. 
My colleague had a concern regarding Google Forms. As the contemplate the type of questions, they often require more elements. There aren't a lot of formatting options in Google Forms and sometimes you need that cap…

Voice Over in Google Slides

"How do I add voice in Google Slides? PowerPoint does it." This question should get frequent flyer miles. For so long my canned response was to use Screencastify or SnagIt (RIP) to record a video of the Slides presentation. To do this, students had to be good at using the Screencastify shortcuts to get a clean project without doing video editing. Sometimes this proved to be difficult for students as they could use a keyboard shortcut to pause the video. This typically caused confusion as to when they were actually recording. This was a frustration for a classroom of students that were fairly new to using Screencastify. There is certainly a learning curve when it comes to creating a good quality recording.
Autoplay Saves the DayGoogle added a few features earlier this year that makes the process of creating a voice over in Google Slides much more palatable. By palatable, I mean that users no longer have to record the entire Slides presentation as a video. They no longer have…

Ten Tinkercad Tips

3D Printing What an opportunity we have as educators to bring creativity into the classroom. 3D printing is a process that allows users to dream up an idea and make it a reality. I recently worked with sixth graders through this process. For many, this was the first time they had ever seen a 3D printer. It was an obscure concept to them. Once they jumped into Tinkercad and saw it in action, students experienced scale, the metric system, and how ideas can be fabricated into reality. 
A post shared by Lance Yoder (@edgaged) on May 16, 2017 at 9:13am PDT
Tinkercad Workflow is key. Just like any other technology, there is a learning curve when it comes to using Tinkercad. The experience of knowing how to operate your tools and how it will affect the outcome plays a big factor int he usability in class. The common denominator when it comes to teachers not wanting to venture into the realm of 3D printing and using Tinkercad is the issue of time. It takes time to learn. It takes time to crea…

Autodraw and Hyperdocs

Autodraw Google's Autodraw is extremely fun. Everyone has experienced the pains of attempting to draw on a device using a mouse or a touch-pad; it rarely turns out well. Google's Autodraw is an A.I. project where it predicts what you attempted to draw. Every time you release the click on your mouse, it pulls up a list of options at the top of your screen. When you select an item, it replaces your drawing with a clean and more realistic version of your own drawing. You then have the freedom to change the color of the object or insert fill color using the paint bucket. You even have the freedom to move and resize objects after you draw them.  Anyone can be an artist with Autodraw. 
If you think Autodraw is pretty awesome, you should try it on a touchscreen device. Using this activity would obviously be easier if being able to draw objects by hand. It certainly increases the accuracy in predictability from Autodraw. I tried it on my Asus Chromebook Flip and it worked like a char…

Google Sites Updates

Early Access MSD of Steuben County was fortunate to have a sneak peak at the new version of Google Sites. It was a great opportunity for students and teachers alike. Teachers now had the capability to build websites/resources that were simplistic and easy to use. Students could now build a website that was easy to understand and fully collaborative. We've had several teachers take advantage of the exciting opportunity Google Sites possesses for students to work on a website together. Imagine students being able to take a broad topic, break it down into multiple pages, and students build a learning resource together. This would not only benefit the group, but the entire class as the websites are easily shared via Classroom or a main website built by the teacher to host all the links. 
All GSuite for Education school districts has access to the new version of Google Sites. Teachers will want to start thinking about utilizing it as the classic Google Sites will be depreciated. Googl…

Words with Friends Edu

Connections Words with Friends is a powerful way to make connections with others. For a long time, it has provided a means for me to connect with my father. He and I have a common bond when it comes to word games. (In some ways, it is scary as I often feel like I'm playing against myself.) In my past place of employment, I would play fellow technology coaches and even my superintendent. Words with Friends has lost a little steam in popularity, but I still play with current colleagues. As a technology coordinator, it is important that I spend time with people and making connections. Believe it or not, Words with Friends has helped me accomplish that because the people I play like to discuss our games when I stroll through the hallways. Great Learning Experience What a great learning experience Words with Friends has to offer for students. Problem solving, vocabulary, and spelling are all benefits of playing Words with Friends. Long ago I had thought it would be great if students c…

Drive Slides

Need a Sideshow? Thanks to Matt Miller and Alice Keeler, a long missing feature in Google Slides is here. Ever want to create a quick slideshow with all of the pictures from your exciting field trip or special guest speaker in your classroom? Of course, we've all been there. In the past, I've always sent people to YouTube to use their video editor to import your images and create a video. (Click here to see how.) It is a great, free option. If you want it on a Slides presentation so visitors can click through each picture, Drive Slides will save the day. With a single click, Drive Slides will take all the pictures from a Google Drive folder and put them in a brand new Slides presentation.

How to use Drive Slides What you'll need first to operate Drive Slides is the chrome extension which you can download by clicking here. Any pictures that you desire to be in a slideshow will need to be uploaded to a Google Drive folder. While in the destination folder, click on the Drive…

Google Slides Video Options

Disclaimer: I wrote this being completely free of Microsoft Office since the spring of 2015. I understand updates I have not experienced have occurred since then.
Google Drive  It was six years ago that I first experienced using Google Drive. I've been a fan of Docs, Sheets, and Slides ever since. It long was before Microsoft had any live collaborative capabilities; prior to any decent cloud storage they had to offer. Access has always been the trump card over the Office counterparts.

Though it isn't as prevalent as it was six years ago, I still get naysayers that love their Office and fire back that it isn't fully functional. I can't really argue that point. For the most part, it is true that Office is much more powerful in regards to function. For the majority of tasks, Google will do the job. Especially for educators, Google will do the job. In some scenarios, Google does it better.
Common Slides questions Since the dawn of Google Slides, I get some pretty standard…

Google Takeout Transfer

How do I download my stuff? It was spring of 2016 and our senior class at Angola High School moved on to bigger and better things. I had just finished my first year at MSD of Steuben. My technology director, Chantell Manahan, had started in January and it was her first time in a position in the technology world as she was fresh out of the classroom. Admittedly, we had (still have) much to learn and much of that occurs through mistakes. It was at this time that Chantell and myself started to receive emails from parents and students requesting access to content that students had created in their Google Drive. 
We had made the senior class accounts go dormant in the summer of 2016. It had apparently slipped our minds that this would be a necessary step. In our Google Admin Console, we have it set so that students cannot log out of their school account nor utilize an incognito window. The current plan is to allow our senior class to launch an incognito window in the final quarter, create…

Google Meet

Goodbye Hangouts For the last year, there has been much discussion about the fate of Google Hangouts. Google announced the launch of Allo and Duo as messaging and video conference apps that would be available on mobile devices in the consumer market. Questions of what would happen to Hangouts flooded the Google world. It was then announced that Hangouts would remain for enterprise accounts (GSuite for Education). This was great. My teachers and staff have been using Hangouts all year. This has been especially helpful for my elementary teachers as they often do grade-level collaboration via Hangouts so that they can all meet at 3:00, finish at 3:30, and never leave the comfort of their classroom. 
Change is brewing In February, a new player emerged: Google Meet. Hangouts are still in existence and still being used. However, Google Meet is now available. It even appears very similar to Google Hangouts. Much of the same functions and interface are there. You can still screen-share and p…