5 New Technologies To Try

Sometimes it’s nice to get some direction towards new programs and websites. Here are 5 new items that were released this summer. Each picture links to the site, so check them out when you have a few minutes of spare time.

screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-1-11-56-pmYou can add it as an extension to Chrome so it’s available in your browser.


screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-1-18-44-pmIt’s not available yet, but the hype is huge. Swift Playgrounds will be available for free sometime this fall.

screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-1-20-48-pmCould be a great tool to introduce to students as well, add valuable web resources that can be collected and read when there is time.

screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-1-23-24-pmOnly available for Apple products right now, but they’re working on Android.

*Images and content pulled from https://goo.gl/qFpruh

Tech Training – Learning Snapshots and Video Quizzes

Next week we’re excited to offer two interesting tech topics that can be used in any classroom! Each session is available multiple times in the MS Lab; you should be able to find a time that works in your schedule. If not, feel free to set up a 1:1 time with us.

Learning Snapshots – Use various techs like Socrative, Exit Ticket add-on, student blog posting with pictures/screenshots of paper assignments to take a learning snapshot or formative assessment. Also try the idea of Backchannel chatting to keep a live chat that accompanies class discussion, Today’s Meet, Chatzy, Twitter, and Ning.

Video Quizzes- Embed questions into YouTube, Vimeo or other videos to create a lesson and assessment in one tool. Great for flipped classroom approach: Educanon, Zaption, Vialogues, HapYak, and more.

Remember, the schedule lists the Block next to the title.

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Google Apps and Add-Ons


One of the things we focused on in our Google Drive Advanced trainings last week, was using Apps and Add-ons to do more with the tools you already use.

If you’ve never visited the Chrome Web Store before, this 45 second video is a great intro.

And a quick clarification… the difference between an App and an Add-on.

Apps are programs in the Google Chrome Web Store (see above video) that let you be more productive when you are using the Chrome browser. There are games, tools, media organizers and more. You do not need to use Google Drive to use these, but you must use Chrome.

Add-Ons are also programs, but they’re built into the different types of documents you can create in Google Drive. Each one (Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms) has its own distinct add-ons that increase what you can do when working in that app or to enhance a document. To access, just create a new document like below.

Screen Shot 2015-11-09 at 2.24.13 PM

Once the document is open, click the Add-ons tab. Then choose Get Add-ons.

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You can search if you know what you’re looking for, or just scroll through the options and read the descriptions.  If you hover your cursor over the name, you’ll get more information. Or usually you can click to see more details and perhaps see an introductory video.

Screen Shot 2015-11-09 at 2.34.19 PM

When you select an add-on, there will often be a demo video and further instructions to get you started. To choose this add-on, click the +Free button, then allow the software to run when the next screen pops up. *Make sure you link these add-ons to your AAS account, not your personal one!

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From now on, when you go into that type of Google document, you’ll have this add-on listed in the Add-ons tab.

Some great options to get you started…

For Google Docs:

  • Mind Meister (create mind maps from a brainstorming document)
  • Easy Bib (easily add bibliographies to essays)
  • Orange Slice (create rubrics quickly)
  • Easy Accents (great for language classes, add accents to your documents)

For Google Sheets and Forms:

  • Doctopus & Goobric (connect assignments turned in on Google Classroom with rubrics and grade/return to kids in one window)
  • Flubaroo (set up automatic grading for information in a spreadsheet, great to connect with responses you get from a Google Form)
  • Autocrat (document merge tool that creates PDF or shared documents from spreadsheet data)

Please play around with these options and let us know if you need help getting started or ideas for how these can be used in your class!