Noel Erskine, Technology Coordinator Norris Schools

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Some Tech Tools and tips for your Christmas break.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Need an icon?  The Noun Project to the rescue.  is a free resource that students can use to create their own resumes or resumes for literary or historical figures.  Remember, Google Docs Home page has some resume templates too.  (The old templates gallery is still active, with a lot of templates for a variety of things.) 

Adobe Spark Now Lets You Insert Videos into Your Videos - The best keeps getting better.  I love this app for simplicity and ease of use! Both web and app based. 

Google Forms -- Don't get caught in this situation!  Google forms do not have revision history or undo options like most of the Google products. When you create a new Google Form, a spreadsheet is not automatically created, so the data is just stored in Google forms.  Make a spreadsheet right away to have all of your form data written too!  Without this, if you delete a question... all of the associated responses are deleted... since they were not written to a spreadsheet.  (This recently happened to one of our staff members, so I hate sharing this tip based on bad news.... but don't let it happen to you.) 

Kahn Acadamy -  NEW - We’re excited to bring you our newest subject — Grammar! We created Grammar to help both native and non-native English speakers at all levels. In the new course, our resident grammarian, David, and our team of grammar experts explain punctuation, parts of speech, style and usage, and Standard American English conventions. As with our other subjects, students can review topics and work on practice exercises if they need some extra help outside of class. We hope you’ll check out our new videos, articles, and exercises and share them with your students if you find them helpful. If you are not familiar with Kahn Acadamy... you need to be!  It's an amazing free resource for teachers, parents, and students! 

Math tools:
3D math modeling to go! Create solids, spheres, planes, cross sections and many more three-dimensional objects. Solve linear geometry problems, plot z = f(x,y) functions and more.... GeoGebra's tools are great for any mobile device and/or computer.  They are free too! 

YouTube tools:
Need to download a video from YouTube?  This online converter is awesome.  Tips: Make sure you select a video format for downloading. I recommend mp4.  If you upload your video to Google Drive, it will take some time for Google to process the video before it's ready for playback. 

I have mentioned this in the past... but it's currently my favorite Chrome Extension for YouTube. Magic Actions adds a lot of features that you will love. Enhance your YouTube watching experience! Auto HD, Ad Block, Cinema Mode, Mouse Wheel Volume Control, Screenshot... Check it Out! 

Weekly teacher tips from google:
(Notice how they use Google Slides to deliver this experience. Nice...) 

Google Expeditions - This week's tip - Use full-screen mode on your tablet. 
Google Forms - This week's tip - Convert points to percentage. 
Google Classroom - This week's tip - Inviting guardians. 

Google Docs:

Adding a Table of Contents to a Google Doc  (Short 2 min. video tutorial.)  - Via BetterCloud Monitor | A table of contents can be a super useful guide for readers. Best of all, Docs will automatically create links to each section.

Work Faster in Google Docs with These 10 Useful Keyboard Shortcuts - Via BetterCloud Monitor | One of the best ways to speed up your productivity is to use keyboard shortcuts. Here are ten useful shortcuts for common tasks in Google Docs.

Power Up Your Google Slides With the Lucidchart Integration - Via BetterCloud Monitor | To take your Google Slides presentation to the next level, you can add flowcharts, diagrams, and mockups to illustrate your point. Thanks to a new Slides API integration, you can export professional-looking charts right from Lucidchart into Google Slides. Short 2 min. video shows you how

Google Sheets:

How to Do a VLookup in Google Sheets - Via BetterCloud Monitor | The VLookup function in Google Sheets is used to find whether a value exists in multiple ranges. This tool has limitless uses for sorting through and making sense of large lists of data. This short 2 minute video will show you what you have been missing if you have not used the Vlookup function before. 

Share Individual Tabs in Google Sheets  -  Via BetterCloud Monitor | Sometimes, you might want to share a single tab of a Google Sheet without sharing the rest of it. As simple as it sounds, Google does not have a direct way to do this. That doesn't mean it's impossible--you just need to get creative.  This short 3 minute video shows you how. (It uses the import range function that you may use for many other things too!) 

Google Calendar:

Take Google Calendar to the Next Level with These 3 Extensions.  (I personally use the Event Merge Extension because several of our school calendars often contain duplicate events.) 


Free-IOS App - Apple Award Winner for 2016:
Prisma (free, iPhone) burst on the scene this year as everybody’s favorite photo app, letting users transform their photos into images that look more like paintings and drawings, with dozens of different styles to choose from. 

Want to do a book reading looking like a ghost, or other creatures.... This is the app for you! Another 2016 Apple award winner: 

MSQRD (Free IOS) — Live Filters & Face Swap for Video Selfies 
Transform the way you look through amazing masks and effects! Turn into a panda, zombie or even face swap with your friends. Save and share photos and videos.  


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