Teacher Zen with Google Tools
"Learn with great passion. Learn with great enthusiasm." - Lailah Gifty Akita
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Google has many free incredible apps and tools that work on any device to bring you Teacher Zen. You can accomplish so many time consuming tasks, such as grading, assessment, providing feedback, research, creating spreadsheets, and more with Google Apps for Education (GAFE), Google mobile apps, extensions, add-ons, and scripts. Below is a slide presentation (download for free) of some of my favorite tips, tools, and resources to help you reach your Teacher Zen this year.
- Empower yourself with apps and add-ons! Be familiar with Andrew Stillman and his scripts for teachers, such as Doctopus, Goobric, and Formmule, Cloudlab.newvisions.org/add-ons
- To get the most out of Google, learn to use add-ons for each product. You can empower spreadsheets, documents, presentations, Hangouts on Air, and more by using free add-ons.
- Cool Tip- with a gmail account when you add a +1 (or any number) to your email name before the @ sign and it acts like a different email but still goes to the original email address. This is helpful for creating multiple accounts on various apps or using your email to sign students up for apps and tools. I learned this from @Mgraffin.
- Download the separate mobile apps for gmail, docs, spreadsheets, photos, drive, search, slides, and more.
- To allow offline editing on your mobile device or tablet you have to turn on offline editing for each document, spreadsheet, or creation. If you have a Chromebook, it begins offloading these files for you.
- Google Drive gives students free unlimited cloud storage for their creations.
- With Google Drive, students can collaborate on documents, check their grammar and spelling, publish their work, format their work, cite resources, conduct scholarly research, translate, and so much more!
- Why reinvent the wheel? Someone has shared a free template for you to edit so find it at Docs.google.com/templates
- Use Google Chrome- a powerful browser you take wherever you are connected to the Internet.
- Introduce your students to extensions to do mind-blowing things! Find some here and more here, Tackk.com/googledocsquickcreate and Bit.ly/50chrome!
- I recommend getting the Extensify extension which helps you manage all your extension.
- For Google Plus, your students must be at least 13 years- old. I love creating student communities on Google Communities with them on Google Plus.
- Google Collections is one of the newest Google + features that works a lot like Pinterest where you can share collections of bookmarks.
- Google Photos is now a separate app that allows you to search your photos for trees, profiles, etc., even if you didn’t label your photos.
- Cool trick- if you upload a Google photo of text to Google Drive, locate the file, then right click on the file and choose to open with Google Docs. This will turn that image into text.
- With Google Hangouts on Air students, up to 10 can record themselves presenting, brainstorming, creating collaborative music, producing a video, and so much more! Empower your Hangout with Add-ons!
- Connect with me on Google.com/+ShellySanchezTerrell for more tips and resources.
- To discover more Google tips and tricks, follow #GAFE on Twitter.
- Extensity helps you manage all your extensions so your browser runs faster and isn't full of tons of extensions at once.
- Read & Write– One of the best apps for students that has many features, such as reading aloud whole texts or selections while highlighting the words, defining words with text and picture dictionaries, speech to text, suggestion of the next word to write, and much more.
- Ginger– Helps with writing. Features include a proofreader, spell checker, live corrections, defines words and offers synonyms.
- Grammarly– Spell checker and grammar checker for written documents, email and status updates on various social media sites.
- Duolingo– Use with the duolingo mobile app to learn vocabulary with various lessons and quizzes. A user also created the Duolingo Vocabulary Manager, which is supposed to do more than the Duolingo extension.
- Lingually– Features include definitions, grammar check, and a flashcard maker with new vocabulary.
- English Dictionary Translate– Defines words in simple terms, translates in native language, provides example sentences, shows the phonetic transcription and gives the pronunciation.
- Vocabla– A dictionary and translator that keeps a vocabulary list.
- ReadLang– Translator that creates flashcards with new vocabulary.
- SpeakIt– Select any text and hear it read aloud in 50 different languages.
- Google Translate also has an extension to translate any word.
- For citing resources try Cite This For Me and EasyBib
Find the tools listed above and many more resources in the bookmarks below.