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Quick Take Videos

Note: these videos are by now, 2021, somewhat or very out of date. I'm keeping this page as a bit of an archive of past work. 

Many of these videos are meant to give you a quick overview of digital tools so that you can see if they might be right for your classroom. Other videos quickly show how an aspect of an app works. For more info, have a look elsewhere on this site, do a YouTube search, or contact me. I'm happy to help! Unless otherwise noted, all of these apps work on Chromebooks.

Functions in Sheets

Spreadsheets let you start manipulating data in powerful ways. Check out this quick look at getting started using functions to do tasks like dynamically adding or averaging numbers.


Functions in Sheets 2:39

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Creating Charts from Google Sheets

Sheets makes it easy to create charts and graphs, and these can then be inserted in Docs, Slides, Sites, etc. 

Creating Charts

Creating Charts 2:06

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Inserting Charts

Inserting Charts in Docs, Slides, and Sites

Google makes it easy to insert a chart you've made with Sheets into a Doc, Slides presentations, or Site. The inserted chart will update when you make changes to the Sheet it's based on.

Inserting Charts 1:09

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Functions and Formatting

Doing More with Functions and Conditional Formatting in Sheets

This video shows a few more ways to use functions, and it also introduces conditional formatting. Conditional formatting allows you to make a cell behave a certain way (like turn red) if particular conditions are met (like its value is less than zero). 

More Functions and Conditional Formatting in Sheets: 4:34

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Navigate your Drive

Here's an orientation for your Google Drive. If you've recently switched from a different system, this quick take video will help you get the lay of the land.

Navigate Drive

Navigate your Drive: 1:39

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Create, Move, and Color Folders and Files

This quick take shows some ways to get your Drive organized and looking pretty, including a pro tip about how to put a file into multiple folders simulanteously. 

Create, Move Drive

Create, Move, and Color Folders and Files: 1:38

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Sign-ups with Google Forms

Google Forms isn't a great tool for a sign-up sheet if six parents can sign up for the 5:00 conference slot or if fourteen students volunteer to bring chips and dip to the party. Easily solve this problem by limiting the number of times a Forms option can be selected. See Bjorn Behrendt's Choice Eliminator site for more.

Forms Sign-ups

Sign-ups with Google Forms: 1:39

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G Keep

Google Keep

Keep is a great tool for jotting to-do lists, longer notes, and for saving images and pages from the web.  Color-code, label, and organize your notes, share them with collaborators, and create them on any device as they sync between your laptop, phone, and tablet. 

Google Keep: 1:48

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This timeline generator allows students and teachers to easily create, share, and embed timelines with text, links, images, video, quizzes, and more. Use it across the curriculum in creative ways to present ideas and research. Now with a collaboration feature. Sample timeline.


Timelines Across the Curriculum: 1:26

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Google Classroom Questions

The Question feature in Google Classroom allows students to respond individually to the teacher or to participate in an online conversation with other students.

Google Classroom Questions: 1:21

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Google's My Maps

Make custom Google maps with points, lines, shapes, text, images, and links to web pages, videos, Google Docs and Sheets. Tell stories about history, literature, science, society, and more. Using My Maps how-to video, My sample map on Caesar, Google My Maps page.

My Maps

Google's My Maps: 1:07

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Use your phone, tablet, or computer to send updates and reminders, or even to create a micro-blog for your classroom with sub-140 character posts. Parents get a text message, everyone's numbers remain confidential, and you can turn off the ability to reply.

Remind 1:06

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Essays and Worksheets through Google Classroom

Create a single essay doc or worksheet, then easily distribute personal copies to each student. They can type their work in, receive feedback during and/or after, then submit for your comments and grades. Docs are named and organized automatically in both students' and teachers' Drives. Here's a guide for students on Accessing Google Classroom

Essays and WS

Essays and Worksheets through Google Classroom: 1:02

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Google Forms

Use Google Forms to make everything from qucik, "exit ticket" style check-ins to lengthy quizzes and tests with text and multiple choice answers. See responses in various ways, including automatically grading multiple choice with Flubaroo or turning short answers into a doc with Save as Doc.

G Forms

Google Forms: 1:26

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Feedback through Google Docs

Here's a look at giving feedback on student work through Docs, and it includes a favorite pro tip of mine: creating a bank of comments and links to help resources for common grammar errors. Here's my page of "Doc Stamps" that I copy and paste into comments. 

Feedback with Docs

Feedback through Google Docs: 1:29

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Prei Intro


Prezi is a great way to create dynamic presentations whose form reinforces and even creates meaning.  Watch this or "Smooth Transitions in Prezi" for a pro tip on how to keep your viewers nausea-free! Here are Prezi's tutorials.

Prezi: 1:24

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Prezi Transitions

Smooth Transitions in Prezi

Prezi can be a fantastic presentation tool in which the the form of the presentation, the structure and transitions, reflects the meaning, the ideas and content. OR, it can be a nausea-inducing roller coaster ride. Here's a pro tip on nausea-avoidance. Also see Prezi's good tutorials, like this one

Smooth Transitions in Prezi: 1:19

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Numbered Lists and the Format Paintbrush in Docs

The format paintbrush tool is surprisingly useful for applying the formatting of one piece of text to another. I like using it to make some lines in a document numbered. 

Lists and Paintbrush

Numbered Lists and the Format Paintbrush in Docs: 00:31

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Control Images and Text with Tables in Docs

Tables are a great way to add more variety and control to images and text in Google Docs.

Tables in Docs

Control Images and Text with Tables in Docs: 1:02

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Word to Docs

Convert Word to Docs

If you have or recieve Microsoft Word documents that you want to convert to Google Docs format, Google makes the process pretty easy and effective. The formatting usually translates well, and the Word version still remains in your Drive. 

Convert Word to Docs: 1:08

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View and Insert

Features of View and Insert in Docs

Here's a quick look at a few key features in the View and Insert drop-down menus in Docs. Change margins, insert math formulae, create headers, and do other cool stuff.

Features of View and Insert in Docs: 1:27

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The Research Pane in Docs

The "Research" feature in Docs lets you conduct research then insert images, links, and properly-formatted footnote citations. 

Research Pane

The Research Pane in Docs: 1:23

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Storytelling in EE

Storytelling in Explain Everything

Explain Everything is a screencasting app for iPads, Chromebooks, and other devices. It's a great way for students to narrate their understanding of something and accompany it with visuals that they manipulate. This example shows how it might be used for story telling. For younger students, the teacher or I could set up the visuals based on the students' storyboarded ideas, and then we record. Older students could tell a story or share their knowledge of a topic

Storytelling with Explain Everything  :58

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Scratch JR. Key Conepts

Key Concepts with Young Students in Scratch

Scratch Jr. can be a great way for students to visualize and gain ownership over concepts they study relating to math, money, time, etc. They combine those ideas with challenges arising from the block programming environment of the app, and in the end, they see their growing understanding come to life.  Available on iPads and Android tablets. 

Key Concepts with Young Students  :27

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Another example of Scratch Jr, this one with photos of the money rather than drawings.

Money Literacy and Coding with Scratch Jr.  :29

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Insert Links into Any Image with Thinglink

Thinglink lets you take text, images, video, sound, docs, and more and insert them as linked "tags" on an image or collage of images. A great, flexible, easy tool for teachers or students to create interactive projects. More resources here. Also, woof.

Insert Links into Any Image  1:30

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