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Teenagers, Cell Phones, and Social Media - New Survey Results!

Common Sense Media recently released the results of their 2018 survey of student cell phone use - Social Media, Social Life:  Teens Reveal their Experiences.  As a professional working with teenagers, some of the results won't surprise you.  But some will!  Below are the results in graphic form.  (Link to entire Infographic with all information.)

Social Media use has increased dramatically among teens:

Cell phones are changing teen preferences for how they communicate with friends and family, with more teens now preferring to text than speak in person: Speaking in person brings a new level of understanding to communication through non-verbal signals like facial expressions and verbal signals like voice tone.  What a shame students no longer prioritize that rich communication experience.

Social Media distracts teens from enjoying other activities:

The most interesting statistic of all, though not a surprise to many.
Yet teens report overall positive feelings about their Social Medi…
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Review time - Make it Fun with an Easy-to-Build Jeopardy Game!

Factile allows you to quickly build a Jeopardy game board using your content on their website.  With the end of the Quarter rapidly approaching, it is time to help your students review material and prepare for any end-of-quarter exams.  Factile's Jeopardy game helps you easily create a content review activity in a fun and competitive classroom environment!  (Kahoot!, Quizlet, and Quizziz are also good tool choices for the end of the Quarter. )



A student of Rhonda Penaud's actually introduced us to Factile.   He made a Fractile game for his French class to play for a class assignment!  The class (and Rhonda) loved it!

To see how it works, play their Demo game.

To get started, create an account on the Factile site and navigate to the Games tab

You can either create your own game:

Or search in the academic categories for one that is already built.


You can use the previously built game as is, or copy it and make the adjustments you want!

Click New Game to start building one from…

Just Released! Intelligent Search in Google Drive

Google has been busy this week, updating both GMail and Google Drive!

I have been excitedly waiting for the Intelligent Search feature in Google Drive.  Everyone could use a little help finding items in their Drive!

You are familiar with the Quick Access files Google shows you via their Artificial Intelligence (AI). 


Place your cursor in the search box located above your Google Drive.


Courtesy of Google Artificial Intelligence, you see a new list of options:


First:  Suggested search queriesNext:  Top collaboratorsNext:  File types, edit history, priority items, and more! Do you miss the old search box where you have additional criteria you can add?  Click the Advanced Search found at the bottom of the box.  The advanced search dialogue box you opens for your use!





GMail: Easily Take Action without opening an Email!

Google released a new feature within the past week to help you deal more efficiently with your emails.

I often see emails in my inbox that I know precisely what action to take without the need to open them.  I might need to apply a label, move the email, type a one-word reply, or search for a different email from that user.  Now everyone can easily do that right from their inbox!



While viewing your Gmail inbox, hold down the Control key and click your trackpad.  (This is equivalent to a right click on a PC.)

Without opening the email, the following sub-menu will appear:

Perform any of these actions without the extra clicks to open the email and select the appropriate action!

Get a Class Roster easily with the Roster Extension!

A simple class roster provides a lot of uses for teachers.  They help track who you've conferenced with, who has completed a project and even allow you to upload your roster to other tools like Turnitinor Zipgrade.

Alice Keeler, the acknowledged Queen of Google Sheets, asked her nephew to create a Google Chrome extension that pulls a roster from Google Classroom and creates a Google Sheet with student information.

Watch the video below to see how it works or follow the written directions following the video!



Navigate to Alice's Website or to the Google Chrome Web Store.  Click the Add to Chrome button. 

You need to authorize the extension the first time you use it:



Once installed, look on your Chrome browser after the address bar.  Locate the Roster Extension icon and click it.


 Click the List classes button.  A list of your Google Classroom classes will appear.



Select the desired class.  


Click Make roster:

Google creates a Sheet using the name of your Google Classroom, and …

Gathering Reflection, Feedback, and Student Work with Google Forms

We do not learn from experience... we learn from reflecting on experience.― John Dewey

Google Forms is a workhorse in the classroom.  It can be an information gatherer, a quiz, an assignment collector, feedback gatherer, and a place for students to reflect on their learning.

The Rivers & Revolution program relies heavily on Google Forms to support their learning process.




Supporting the Learning Cycle: Rivers has four major units of study.  At the culmination of each unit, students create a major artifact to reflect their learning.  This artifact is either an extension activity of the unit's work or a related area of interest chosen by the student.  While the student may choose from a wide range of artifacts, they will eventually represent their artifact digitally - either in an image, video, or another digital format.
Pre-Work: Students are provided a comprehensive artifact overview including expectations and possible artifacts to choose from.   
Students work through the Arti…

Aspen Updates provide some new features in the GradeBook

Aspen updated with some really great feature enhancements a couple of weeks ago.  Here are a few you might find helpful:

The Gems: Integrated Attendance information in the Scores side tab Thank Meredith Fischer for finding this hidden gem - the ability to see integrated attendance information in the GradeBook>Scores side tab! 

Click the Display options and change them to Due Date:



You will now see integrated attendance information right in your scores column for each assignment.  This is really handy for understanding if a student was absent for an assignment!


Analytics Tab In my opinion the best update, you now have a top tab called the Analytics tab in Staff View.
For the first option, select either Semester 1, Semester 2, or Full Year, based on the course you want to view analytics for.

(Because we don't have terms that end in Q1, Q2, Q3, or Q4, you won't see results here.)
The next box allows you to select the course you want to view:

The last box allows you to see a sp…