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I announced this on my YouTube channel, on Twitter, and on my Facebook page yesterday. If you don't follow me there, here it is. I started a new site for 2019. The site is called Ed Tech Fitness and I created it mostly as an accountability tool for myself to make better health and fitness choices in the new year. But I would love to have company in my quest to get back to eating well and exercising regularly. That's why I created this Flipgrid grid and included it in the Ed Tech Fitness site.



Here's a video about EdTechFitness.com. Here's the first post on the new site.







How to Survive the Snow and Ice is a new compilation video published on the Reactions YouTube channel. The video features segments about how snow (both natural and man-made) is formed, how ice is made, why saltwater takes longer to freeze than freshwater, and why kitty litter is better than regular sand for getting traction on ice.




I spent the morning skiing and playing in the snow with my daughters. That's how we survive the snow and ice. If you're looking for some outdoor activities to do in the snow, take a look at this list.



Here are three more videos about the science of snow and ice:

How to Make Snow (If You're Not Elsa) is a short video produced by SciShow that explains how snow is made at ski resorts by using cooled water and compressed air.




Reactions, a YouTube channel that produces lots of science videos, has a short video that explains how snowflakes are naturally created.




The National Science Foundation has a neat video that explains how high speed cameras capture images of snowflakes forming. The video then goes on to explain why some snow is light and fluffy while other snow feels wet and heavy. (Jump to the 4:25 mark to get to the section about the formation of snowflakes).

If you or your students need a little help staying on task when working online, try one of these Chrome extensions to help limit distractions whenever a new tab is opened. A video overview of these three extensions is included below.



StayFocusd is a Chrome extension that lets you specify the sites that you want to block from yourself or limit your time spent viewing. After you set your time limit and list of sites you'll see a countdown timer for the amount of time that you have left to view that site for the next 24 hours.



ReCall Study Time is a Chrome extension for limiting the amount of time you spend on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Instagram. When you have ReCall Study Time enabled you will see a huge reminder to get back to work if you try to open one of those five social media sites.



FlashTabs is a free Chrome extension that will display flashcards whenever you open a new Chrome tab. The thing that I like about FlashTabs is that it is easy to create your own flashcards to have displayed in your new tabs.





Happy New Year! This new year is important because many many copyrighted works are entering the public domain. Copyrighted works published in 1923 are entering the public domain today. That's hundreds of thousands of images, sounds, novels, short stories, and poems! It has been twenty years since the last big batch of works has entered the public domain. Smithsonian magazine has a great article that explains why 1998 was the last time there was a mass expiration of copyright. The short version is "blame Disney."



On the topic of public domain, I recently published this guide to finding and using media in classroom projects.



Opening a new Chrome tab so that you can check Facebook for "just a minute" is a dangerous game. If it's not Facebook it could be any number of equally time-sucking sites like Pinterest, Twitter, or YouTube. In the past I've suggested using Recall Study Time to see a reminder whenever a new Chrome tab is opened. That extension just shows you a reminder to get back on task. Another option is to try one of the following extensions that show you a vocabulary word or review question whenever a new Chrome tab is opened.



New Tab Quizlet is a Chrome extension that will display a flashcard from your Quizlet sets whenever you open a new tab. If you have questions on your cards, you'll see the question and answer. If you have vocabulary words on your cards, you'll see the word and definition.



FlashTabs is a Chrome extension that will show you one of your flashcards whenever you open a new tab. FlashTabs does require that you create your flashcards on their site. When you open a new tab you will see one of the flashcard questions. The answer is only revealed when you choose to see it. FlashTabs is probably a better choice for those who don't have Quizlet accounts.

More than 13,000 of you are now subscribed to my YouTube channel. These were the ten most watched videos on my YouTube channel in 2018. Interestingly, despite publishing more than 100 new videos in 2018, nine of the ten most-watched videos of the year were made in 2017 or earlier.



How to Add Your Voice to Google Slides this video was originally published in 2017.




How to Use Padlet. (originally published in 2013, the updated version is embedded below).




Installing Back-up and Sync for Google Drive on Windows 10


How to Add Music to Google Slides




How to Use Flipgrid - See Updated Guide Here




How to Use Adobe Spark




How to Create a QR Code for a Google Form




How to Use Google's VR Tour Creator




How to Share Videos Through Google Drive




How to Create a Timeline in Google Slides



Sometimes a small change to the user interface of a web tool can make a huge difference in how quickly you use that tool. Case in point, the grid or "material" view in Google Drive drives me crazy. I much prefer a list of folders and files to a grid display of those same folders and files. Other people love the grid view and hate the linear view. Similarly, some people like desktop reminders while I can't stand the distraction. Fortunately, Google makes it easy to modify the layout and features of your Google Drive dashboard.



In the following video I demonstrate how you can change the layout of your Google Drive dashboard.




Learn more about Google Drive and G Suite in my online course, Getting Going With G Suite

This week is a vacation week for the vast majority of readers of this blog. As I do at this time every year, I'm going to republish some of the most popular posts of 2018. Here's one from August.




A few years ago I decided to start making video tutorials for the many Google tools that I write about on this blog and feature in some of my professional development workshops. This week I created my 250th Google tools tutorial. All of my Google tools tutorial videos can be found in this YouTube playlist. The tutorials in the playlist cover a wide range of features of Google tools for teachers and students. I've embedded a few of the highlights of the playlist below.



How to Record Audio in Google Slides




How to Measure Distances in Google Earth




How to Create Comic Strips in Google Slides




How to Use Data Validation in Google Forms



This week is a vacation week for the vast majority of readers of this blog. As I do at this time every year, I'm going to republish some of the most popular posts of 2018. Here's one from August.




I think I was in the second grade the first time that I played Jeopardy-style review game. More than three decades later playing Jeopardy-style games is a still a popular way to host review sessions in classrooms. You can make your own Jeopardy games that include pictures and videos in Google Slides. In the following video I demonstrate how you can make your own Jeopardy games in Google Slides.



This week is a vacation week for the vast majority of readers of this blog. As I do at this time every year, I'm going to republish some of the most popular posts of 2018. Here's one from July.




The Periodic Table of Elements, in Pictures and Words is an interactive site that shows students how each element is used or is present in familiar products. When students click on an element in the interactive display an image of a familiar product or object appears along with a description of the element and its characteristics. For example, if you click on aluminum an image of airplane appears along with a description of aluminum, its uses, and its characteristics.



The Periodic Table of Elements, in Pictures and Words was created by Keith Enevoldsen. He also offers free PDFs of The Periodic Table, in Pictures and Words. Should you choose, you can support Keith by purchasing a poster of the table.



Applications for Education

The Periodic Table of Elements, in Pictures and Words could be a great resource for middle school science classrooms. It also provides a nice model for an assignment in which you have your students pick an element and then try to identify as many products as possible that contain that chosen element.



H/T to Lifehacker

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