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Tech Tip of the Week - Feb 14, 2020

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By now you’ve seen the Squatter… and if you haven’t check it out here... (Squatter 1, Squatter 2, Squatter 3, Squatter 4, Squatter 5, Squatter 6) Anyway, the amazing graphic design work done on the Squatter is all done on Canva.com. Canva is a graphic design website. It is a “freemium” website, so some features are free, and others cost money. Have your students give it a try the next time you are having them create something. You’ll be surprised at the quality of work that can be achieved without previous expertise… just look at the Squatter. It’s all done for free on Canva.

Tech Tip of the Week - Feb 10, 2020

I'll make this short.

Niceonedad.com

You're welcome.

Tech Tip of the Week - Feb 7, 2020

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How far do you drive to work? 5 minutes? 10? 30? If you’re commuting to the bustling metropolis for work every day, consider subscribing to a podcast or two. This may come as a surprise, but many of my ideas aren’t my ideas at all. They’re ideas that come from podcasts I listen to on the way to and from work each day (except Friday. Friday is reserved for music.) There are several podcast apps (Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Sticher, even Spotify has a podcast section now.) There are also tons of subject areas for you to consider subscribing to. For Ed Tech, I listen to Google Teacher Tribe, Shake Up Learning, Cult of Pedagogy, and Educational Duct Tape. Let me know if you need any recommendations or help getting started. As always, be the reason somebody smiles today.

Tech Tip of the Week - Feb 7, 2020

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We don't like to talk about this, but you need to understand... Copyright is a real thing, and you are responsible for making sure you have the legal right to use your class resources. Here’s something helpful to make sure the images you are using when creating those class resources are legal for reuse. Go to images.google.com and search for the image you want. Once you have your results, click “Tools” then “Usage Rights” then select one of the “Labeled for Reuse” options. If you are going to be selling the resource on Teachers Pay Teachers, make sure you are allowed to commercially use the images you select. I know it’s a pain, but take a minute to Google “Houston ISD Copyright” for an example of why it matters.

Update - Earlier this week, a school in California was fined $250 for a public showing of a movie. The PTO legally purchased a Blu-Ray copy of The Lion King (2019) and used that for a family movie night fundraiser. What's the problem with that? Well, legally purchasi…

Tech Tip of the Week - Feb 5, 2020

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Oh Snap! How often do you want to have two programs open next to each other on your Windows laptop? I am constantly working with multiple windows open. If you want to snap a window to one half of the screen, hold the windows key, and push the left (or right) arrow key. That should snap the window to half of the screen. Better yet, if you have other windows open, it will ask you which one you want open on the other side of the screen. You can also do this by clicking and dragging the title bar of the window to the side or corner of the screen. This is a Windows feature called Snap.

Tech Tip of the Week - Feb 3, 2020

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Work with PDF files? If you haven’t found it yet, pdfcandy.com is a one-stop-shop for your PDF needs. You can convert various files to and from PDF files, edit them, combine, crop, split, delete pages, resize, add watermark, extract text, extract images… and a ton of other things. At last count, there were a total of 42 PDF-related tools at pdfcandy.com. If you’re concerned about editing or converting files via the internet, PDF Candy is also installable on your Windows laptop.

Tech Tip of the Week - Jan 31, 2020

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Welcome back for another Tech Tip of the Week.


Have you heard of Google Tour Builder? It’s a tool that works alongside Google Earth and allows people to create tours that include notation and images. This is fantastic for so many things. Have your students plot significant events from history, or trace the life of a character from a book, or create their ideal vacation, or a timeline with locations of the major innovations that shaped the modern world. The link to the website is tourbuilder.withgoogle.com. If you want to check out a sample of what you can do with Tour Builder, head on over to link.itsthemitchell.com/tourbuilder to see a tour based on major events of the American Revolutionary War.