Immersive Reader is Everywhere!

Many of us suffer through the experience of reading large amounts of text online. Our students are asked to read increasing amounts of information online and for the 1 in 5 of them that has dyslexia the problem is even more apparent

 I am excited to share that the Immersive Reader tool developed by Microsoft is now available in Google Chrome on any web page.

So what is Immersive reader? It is a technology that was developed by Microsoft as one of the views that can be used when editing a Microsoft word document. What makes it so much more useful is that Microsoft has made the technology available for other platforms to use in a variety of ways.  read more

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Google Slides Presenting Tips

I use Google Slides all the time for my professional development presentations. With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing most of our training opportunities online I have had to hone my presentation skills to meet the demands of virtual presentations.

The first and most widely used method of presenting a Slides presentation is by using the Present button in the top right corner in Google Slides.

Present button options

If you click Present, the presentation goes full screen and starts your presentation on the slide currently selected in the sidebar. You exit full screen with the ESC key. Now, presenting full screen is great if you are presenting to an audience as it will fill the screen and make it easier for everyone to see.  read more

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5 Google Classroom Best Practices

As we enter our 5th week of working from home / teaching from home, I wanted to take a few moments to remind teachers of 5 things that might make your life a bit easier when using Google Classroom as the information hub for you at home learners.

Turn off Classwork on the Stream Notifications  
Your students will find it easier to find your assignments if you have them organized by topic on the classwork page. If you are posting only announcements in the stream your students will find it easier to find them.

Click on the gear (top right in classroom) and set Classwork on the stream to “Hide Notifications” read more

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Email Curation with Filtering

This tip is for those of you that get a lot of email and like to keep it organized. In my position, I get a fair amount of email each day, probably around 200 per day not counting SPAM. As such it is a constant battle to stay on top of those emails and keep them organized.

In the old days, we used to drag and drop messages into folders in Outlook Web Access or any other IMAP mail client and that was a good way to keep them organized.

In a previous tech tip (The Art of Email) I shared how I now process my email each day and try and try to have zero messages in my inbox. A big part of that strategy is using a filter to move messages that I don’t need to read, to a folder where I can find them if needed. read more

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Workbench is not just for lesson plans!

As a Google Certified Trainer we are required each year to complete a recertification process and this year it included creating an account on a new service called Workbench. It turns out that in late 2019, Google purchased Workbench as a new tool ideally suited for educators to “discover great lessons and rework them to use in their classrooms.”

Put simply, Workbench is a platform that offers a simple way of sharing lessons with your students. Lessons can be shared via Google Classroom and are tracked in Workbook via the workbook feature.  read more

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