Day 7 of Google 2019 – Google Sheets

Screen Shot 2019-12-01 at 6.53.26 AM.pngOn this seventh day of Google, we will be taking a look at a couple of Google Sheet features.

Images in a Cell

I will have to admit, in the past, I always struggled with fitting images in a cell of a Google Sheet. For whatever reason, I was not able to get things where I wanted them on a first try. Well, Google has solved this problem. Under the “Insert” menu, you will now find “Image in a Cell” when you hover over “Image”.

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Customize Graphs

Next, we will take a look a graphs. In the past, you did not have the freedom to truly customize the looks of your graphs or charts. You now can click on items to move around, change font, style, etc. To initiate any changes, click on different areas of the graph. Then, a column on the right side will show up for you to make the edits that you want to make.

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If you have any questions with the items listed above, you know where to find me. And that is my Spiel…

Teacher Tip – Flippity: On the Fly vs. Planned Groups

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There are many elements to my job that I absolutely love. Today was another reminder! Seeing as though I help support curriculum in the classrooms, I am able to observe great teaching strategies from the high school staff. We all do great things and have great skills that are unique to us as an individual.

Continue reading “Teacher Tip – Flippity: On the Fly vs. Planned Groups”

Day 3 of Google 2018: Checkboxes in Google Sheets

Screen Shot 2018-12-04 at 8.46.14 PMUse spreadsheets from time to time? Google Sheets now allows users to have checkboxes in a column. It might seem like a small feature but in all honesty, it can be a great visual cue to know who has and has not done a particular task.

Continue reading “Day 3 of Google 2018: Checkboxes in Google Sheets”

Chromebook Challenge #hyperdoc

Inspiration
Inspiration #1
Over the summer, I was introduced to a new term/concept known as a #hyperdoc. You might say well isn’t a hyperdoc just a Google Document that has hyperdocs in it? Well, the answer is no. A hyperdoc is a document that has links to other artifacts, videos, articles, games, reviews, etc. Through these links students learn about a concept as well as share their own learning and thoughts with others. To learn more about #hyperdocs, and the work that Lisa Highfill, Kelly Hilton, and Sarah Landis have done, click HERE. I decided to make an attempt with creating a Chromebook challenge hyperdoc (even though it leans more on the side of students mostly learning information and not sharing as much information).

Inspiration #2
I was inspired to produce a Chromebook challenge after hearing about how Lee’s Summit R-7 School District created a Chromebook challenge for their students. Their great resource can be found on their technology website HERE. What I like about what they accomplished is that depending on the grade level, different tasks/reminders were given to the students.

Designing the Challenge
Seeing as though this is our second year as a 1:1 Chromebook school, I thought it made sense to do something similar at the high school level however I tried to gamify it a bit. I tried to keep the design of the challenge in mind when creating it as I did not want students to just watch a video explaining everything. I also knew I wanted to make it interactive and include some teachers in the challenge to put a smile on students faces. I also wanted to make it as easy as possible to follow along.

BHS Chromebook challenge was created using a Google Drawing. You can find the actual file HERE. You will notice that there are 8 different tasks for students in advisory to complete.

  • Chromebook Reminders
  • Chromebook Printing
  • Organizing Digital Life
  • Self Management
  • Chromebook Shortcuts
  • Planning Your Days
  • Google Classroom
  • Chrome Settings

The advisor decides the order of the tasks that they complete as a whole group. Whatever the task, the advisor follows along with the bulleted list. Tasks could involve students:

  • watching a video or two
  • looking over instructions in a Google Slide
  • playing a game
  • providing feedback in a padlet wall
  • organizing their own Google Drive
  • personalizing their own Chrome preferences
Documenting Tasks
Once an advisory completes a task, the advisor clicks on the master Google Spreadsheet link in the middle of the Google Drawing. This is where all advisors keep track of what has and has not been accomplished. The advisor finds their name and the turns the ‘red x’ to a ‘green check mark’. 
 
When all 8 tasks have been completed, the advisory earns a Chromebook challenge badge. Gamifying things makes learning that much more fun. 
As a side note, for every task an advisory completes, their name gets entered in for a free breakfast. There will be a winner for each grade level. Oh and the advisory has the entire month of September to complete the challenge.

Here is to learning while having fun at the same time…

Gamifying Professional Development – #GoogleSheets

This past semester Jess Gilcreast, our librarian, and I worked together in creating ways our staff could earn professional development hours besides sitting in a formal training. Our goal was to help create flexibility and adhere to different learning styles. One such way that we accomplished this was through offering professional development training through Gamification, using Google Sheets.

The Inspiration
This inspiration came from Bob Petitto. Not only was I impressed with the work that he had published on his blog, but I was also inspired by his Chrome in 30 Day activity that he put together. I appreciated the fact that he provided a way for his staff to learn about the Chrome browser on their own time by completing 30 different tasks. His original blog post on his 30 day challenge can be found HERE.

I also was inspired by the work that our Freshmen humanities teachers put together, Heath Ahnert, Steph Burnham, Krystin Cooney, Jess Hatzidakis, Steward Pepper, and Meg Uliasz. Their ultimate goal was to help students truly understand the process of researching and citing acquired information for a research paper. Thus, they gamified the task. Based on student decision on which specific tasks they completed, different items would appear with their explorer. The more challenges the students completed, the more elaborate items would appear, truly creating a ‘game’ out of learning. Such an awesome way for staff to connect with students. These teachers did great work and they came back stating that the students loved the activity.

Gamifying Professional Development
So, with the two above incidences, Jess Gilcreast and I put together our own activity that related to tech training we wanted our staff to know. The link to our Gamification PD Google Sheet can be found HERE. Feel free to use, we just ask that you please give credit.

Instructions Tab:
Instructions for the user explaining how to use the sheet. A video is even included for the user to help them with navigating through the Google Sheet.

My Badges Tab:
As the user completes tasks a certain badge will show up on their ‘certificate’. If a user completes all four tasks, all of them show up on their certificate, one in each corner of the certificate.

These were the four badges that Gilcreast created for the certificate. All done by using Google Drawings.

PD Tabs:
We offered four different opportunities for the staff: Chrome Browser, Researching w/ Google, Chrome Extensions, and Google Updates. In order for a staff member to receive a badge, they had to complete all tasks under that topic. You will also notice that a reflection section was added at the bottom of each tab. We wanted to know what their biggest take away from the activity was as well as any questions they still had that we could help answer.


NOTE: Some things might be outdated at this time as this was something we put together for Spring semester of 2016.

Benefits to this Type of Learning?

  • Staff learn at their own pace
  • Staff learn when they want to learn (learning should happen beyond the walls of the school – we hear this all the time with student learning so why shouldn’t it apply to our staff as well)
  • Staff are competitive

This was the very first time that I had done anything in terms of Gamifying. Not only did I have fun deciding what to include, I also gained a great appreciation for what Google Sheets can do for you. I also enjoyed collaborating with my librarian. I know that I have already said this but thanks for the inspiration Bob Petitto and Freshmen Humanities team. My hope is that in the future more staff in our school will take advantage learning in this format.