Google sites

Google sites is free but there are education and business versions of it where you pay an annual fee. It can be used for intranets within an organisation or family websites. It could be used to build an e-port folio so you have a record of what you achieve with your reflection on those achievements. It has the templates and tools you need so that you don’t have to go looking for them. Google explain it here on their welcome page . The Google help forum gives you an insight into what is paid and not paid and discussions around Google Sites. There is a review of Google Sites on SuperWebsiteBuilder. Google Sites is another way of demonstrating growth and progress. Often people are so busy they think they are not achieving anything. If they can look back over blogs and websites they can see the growth because it has been documented along the way.

Google Australia Blog

Google Search for your SocksGoogle has an official Australia blog which is not without a sense of humour. On 1/4/2016 there was a post about the new bluetooth enabled technology to find lost socks. They know us well. Odd socks is surprisingly a topic of conversation more often than you would think in Australia. It can create a lot of mirth. We often want to know the trick of keeping socks paired. We regularly have odd socks days at fundraisers. Odd socks are a part of our culture. The blog offers a good deal of information about Google in Australia and some of the ideas and software Google now has to make good use of its online offerings. The blog is worth bookmarking so you keep up to date with what Google is doing here – besides having us on.

Time to upgrade save icon

Google -retro Google is celebrating its 17th birthday and has a lovely image of retro technology. I have a nice purple lava lamp next to my computer. My old csi monitors are in the garage waiting until I can lift them to recycle them. Why did we ever use such hefty monitors? My retro laptop comes out occasionally and I have an old word processor which prints one line at a time to thermal paper.

save icon Image: Iconfinder

But what about the save icon? I have floppy disks.I know what they are. I regret not having a floppy drive any longer. 1.44MB of data was huge. How did we manage all that storage? Yet the floppy icon lives on as the save icon. How many will still know what it represents? How many will have seen a floppy disk? Isn’t it time to move on and upgrade the save icon to something more relevant?

Computational Thinking for Educators

certificate of completionI have completed the Computational Thinking Course for Educators which was run by Google. I have done it over several weeks but it could have been completed quickly. I looked at all the different things to do with coding and applications, I have participated in the online comments and feedback and now I have finished the projects. None of this was arduous but what it did was made me think about things differently, shed some new light as to how I could approach teaching and students. My project was to use computational thinking to teach a topic of French. I have just done that and it has worked well. computational thinking. You can have a copy of it to look at if you like:Year 10 French, so that you can see how I have set a topic up in terms of computational thinking. It was an interesting project.Now that I have done that I have decided it’s a good way to allow teachers to develop in terms of performance standards – give them a tertiary challenge!

Google Tour Builder

I have blogged before about Google Tour Builder because it is a powerful classroom tool which students like to use because it is real. I am using it again this year and am offering you a different video to watch. Both videos explain well how to use the Tour Builder. As a French teacher it helps me help students get some authentic learning and also have a good reason to use their French. QuickTime will record their screen as   Tour Builder plays so they can import it into iMovie or some other software to enhance the tour even further.

I have just been through an odd experience in that Chrome will not run the Tour Builder Google Earth extension. I downloaded it but Chrome, a Google browser ,doesn’t seem to want to support Tour Builder any more. I am now running it on Safari and it works really well.

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