Google Keep for the classroom

Have you used Google Keep? Do you love sticky notes? Google Keep is sticky notes 100 times better. You can go to keep.google.com or click on the keepicon to get there.

So yes, it is sticky note app. You can take notes, color code, and add labels to these notes, but it is so much more. Here are a few of the things you might not know Google Keep can do.

1. Plan Book

I like to make labels for the top of the notes and keep those 4 notes at the top so it works as my plan book. I can access it from any device and it’s easy to update. I did steal this idea from Kasey Bell at Shake Up Learning.

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I created my headers in Google Drawing. I used insert image and selected from the Creative Commons free use library and then added a shape with a custom color and increased the transparency. Of course, the one at the end is a Bitmoji because everything is better with a Bitmoji :-). I love that I can set reminders inside my notes. I don’t always want to open my calendar to create a reminder and it’s convenient that I can do it while creating the note.

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2. Save to Google Keep

There is a Chrome Extension that allows you to send bookmarks directly to Google Keep. When you are on a site, click the lightbulb and a window will pop-up with the link and the option to make a note.

Save to Google Keep

I love this features, especially when I’m in Twitter. I like and retweet so many things that I can never find them later. Sending them to Google Keep prevents me from losing great ideas. It’s a simple as right-click (or control-click) and the menu pops up and allows you to send it to Keep.

Save to Google Keep (1)

3. Capture Text

This one kind of blew my mind. You can take any image (not PDF but we will address that in just a second) and upload it to Google Keep. Then click on the three dots at the bottom (more) and select Grab image text. Scroll beneath your image and magic has happened. Text was created from the image. It’s not perfect, but for that document that you only have a pdf for, now you can get the text from it and NOT have to retype all of the information. I the example below, I have a book that is out of print and I wanted to share it with another teacher.

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That brings me to the PDF issue. You can’t upload the PDF as an image. No problem on a Mac (I’m sure PC and Chromebooks have something similar). You can open the PDF in Preview and then export as JPEG. Now you have an image that you can upload to Google Keep. Easy Peasy!

4. Drawing

Now, you can also do this with Google Drawing using the scribble tool but if you are already in Keep, then there is a drawing feature. You can download the image, copy it to Google Docs or share it just like any other Keep note. Students can quickly draw their thoughts and share them.

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This didn’t cover the basics of Google Keep. Get in there and play with it. I think you will love it as much as I do.

Thumbs up Bitmoji

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Geometric Town Project

This is a culminating project that we do in Geometry. It was originally created by a colleague of mine who has since retired. It has gone through many revisions over the past 6 year. I love that it reviews parallel line angle relationships, equations of lines, properties of quadrilaterals, perimeter & area and equations of circles. Not to mention it allows for some student choice and creativity. I’ve posted the most recent update and some examples of student work. Students create the map of a town using the specified guidelines from the town planner.

Project Link

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This is a wonderful end of the year project to tie in with previous knowledge. I hope you can use this in your classroom.

Cross posted on Mathmathnotsuck.wordpress.com

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Make Math Not Suck

My Google Innovator project is ready to be released. Make Math Not Suck is a website where I will post questioning and activities to take the drudgery out of math class. I will still be posting here as well and sometimes they will be mirrored posts. I will also be taking submissions from others so I can include awesome activities that others do to make math better. Please visit and share with others.

https://makemathnotsuck.wordpress.com/

Make Math Not Suck 2 (2)

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Measuring height with Trig

I started to share this project with someone the other day and realized I had never written a blog post for it. We have used this project for quite some time and I love the digital aspect having students label their image and explain their process. We have the students make the clinometers but we give them little guidance as far as the project goes. We want them to problem solve and figure it out. We simply tell them to go measure something bigger than they are. I also limit their travel to school grounds (I did have a student go to the nearby gas station once. You have to be specific!!) I had a group of students last year that forgot their tape measure so they measured in shoe length (yes, I had a one-shoed student outside) and then converted that to inches when they came inside. I love the thought process behind their solution!

Not only does this give purpose to the study of trig, it also gets students outside and working together. It also helps students understand angle of elevation a little better with concrete examples.

I love the first one. She wrote a word problem for her image. Hmm… might have to steal that idea!!

I’ve included my clinometer document (I did steal the image from someone, sorry whoever you are!) and my scoring guide.

Trig Project Scoring Guide

GuideBuild a Clinometer

Happy measuring! Concur Bitmoji

Categories: Geometry, Google Drawing, Google Slides, Trig | Tags: | Leave a comment

Popcorn Containers and Volume

Anytime you can have food in class it’s a good day (unless you are the custodian sweeping up popcorn. I’m sorry!) I came up with this project probably four years ago. We did the whole pour the water from a cone into a cylinder thing, and it was ok, but I wanted something better. While eating popcorn at the movies, my daughter and I started talking about the cost of the popcorn and the sizes available. Putting those two ideas together, this project was born.

The first year I had students create a cylinder and then figure out how to make a cone with the same base area and height. This was a struggle and I ended up showing them. It does involve a lot of thinking and many would not have gotten there on their own. The following year, I created a hand-drawn example of how to calculate the dimensions of the cone. I now have the information in Google Slides for students to use.

There are great discussions about the slant height becoming the radius of the cone. I do have to show students a visual of this and they are always amazed. Once they see the visual and we discuss how the circumference of the cone piece has to meet up with the base circle, they begin to see how it all fits together.

I’ve included the activity for the first day. I’ve popped trashbags full of popcorn and I’ve popped microwave popcorn. If you can get your concession stand to open up their popcorn machine then you have it made.

Popcorn Container Activity

As a follow-up activity, I decided to have students calculate the cost and the amount for which they could sell their popcorn. This allows them to make some decisions about which container would be best. Many of them tell me that it doesn’t matter which one is the best deal because the cone of popcorn would be inconvenient. 🙂

Popcorn Surface Area & Volume Follow-up activity

PopcornEnjoy!

Categories: Geometry, Google Sheets, performance task | Tags: | Leave a comment

Catapulter

Dave Burgess always asks, “If kids didn’t have to come to your class would they?” I think some days the answer to my class is no. Teaching math is challenging so when I can plan a fun, engaging & standards-based activity it’s a win for all.

While researching for our parabola unit I stumbled upon the project posted by Julie Reulbach on her blog I Speak Math. If you don’t follow her on Twitter, you should! I adapted her activity a little to make it go along with Clash of Clans and carried the theme throughout the activity.

I shot the orange spikey stones (because if you say balls in front of freshmen…) at students as they walked in the door starting about a week out. They were pretty excited to get to shoot the catapults themselves. Many of them also play Clash of Clans or Clash Royale so they enjoyed that part too. The activity is frustrating for some of them who like to have their hand held through each step. We have them work together at tables and only intervene if the productive struggle is no longer productive.

I also added a #mathsnap to the activity to reinforce the different parts of the parabola. They LOVED making their Bitmoji’s. They haven’t turned the #mathsnaps in yet but I can’t wait to see them.

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I have attached all of my documents for this project. Remember, this is modified from Julie’s project. You can get all of her originals here.

This is a printable bulls-eye. I feel like I can use the castle image in the middle since it’s a screen-shot I took from the game. If you feel this is questionable, then take the image off.

Desmos activity This is updated from Julie’s as well. I included the Clash of Clans images (possible copyright issues here – sorry) but it makes it more engaging for the students.

I also drop this document in Google Classroom so students can be self-directed when making the #mathsnap

Scoring Guide

 

Categories: #mathsnaps, Bitmoji, parabolas | Tags: | 1 Comment

Flashcard Template

I’m not a fan of memorizing content so flashcards don’t usually have a place in my classroom. Recently we were working with area, surface area & volume in Geometry and you do need to use these formulas. I told students they didn’t need to memorize them but they did need to be able to recognize which one you should use. My students were really struggling with this. I turned to the internet to find some flashcards sites where I could enter images. You either had to pay for that particular service or the website was not very user-friendly. I finally turned to Google Slides, where I should have started, and quickly made some there. I created a notecard image in Google Drawing and then added the flip transition. I am sharing the template as well as the area and surface area flashcards for you to use. Enjoy.

flashcard-templatearea-volume-formulas

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BookSnaps & MathSnap in Google Drawing

When my students create #mathsnaps in my classroom, they want them to look close to something you would create in SnapChat. I’ve created a little animated gif tutorial below to help with that.

You can screen capture your image or take a picture and upload it to drive. Below explains how to insert your image from drive and resize the page.

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The next piece that makes it look like Snapchat is the partially transparent gray bar with text on it.

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Using the scribble tool you can annotate on your images just like you do in Snapchat.

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Then comes my MOST FAVORITE PART, inserting the Bitmojis. My students have the Bitmoji Chrome Extension installed on their computer so they can drag their Bitmoji to their image.

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The other thing I really like about Snapchat are the “other” sticker options. We can do the same thing if we do an image search within Google Drawing.

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Last but not least, download your image so you can share on Twitter, Instagram or other social media. You wouldn’t need to download if you are submitting to Google Classroom. But… these are more fun when you share!!!

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So here are two images. The first one I created in Snapchat and the second one I created in Google Drawing. They look fairly similar.

Now since I teach math, we do #mathsnaps. Student take images from class and annotate them. Here are a couple of examples we’ve used recently.

Please do #booksnaps and #mathsnaps with your students. They will LOVE them!

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Categories: #mathsnaps, Bitmoji, Google Drawing | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Differentiated Instruction with Google Slides

I just watched Dave Burgess at #METC17 and it challenged me to go back through my lessons again and Pirate the heck out of them. And even though we want engaging lessons that kids want to learn, there does come a time, especially in math, when they need to practice. I  don’t think all students should practice the same thing. Some need more and some need less and some need something completely different. On these days we use differentiated lessons in Google Slides. I recently created two new ones (well, one was created by my amazing student teacher) that I will be using next week. Eventually, I’ll have an arsenal of these to use.

The idea behind these activities is to give each group of students a lesson and practice they need to be working on but allows them some independence so I, as the teacher, can walk around and have conversations with students.

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I used to assign all of them in Google Classroom and just tell each group which ones they will be working on but with Google Classroom’s new update, you can now assign separate slides to kids in the same class. I KNOW! Game Changer!!!

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Remember that all files are set to view only but if you File-Make a Copy then it’s yours. Alter as needed for your kiddos but if you share, please credit me.

Enjoy!

Categories: differentiation, Factoring, Google Sheets, Parallel & Perpendicular | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bitmojis in the Classroom

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If you’re not familiar with Bitmojis, YOU ARE MISSING OUT! It’s you in an avatar with a ton of different sayings and situations. It’s an app you can download (iOs & Android) and a very user friendly Chrome extension.

It is fun, but it also has a TON of applications in the classroom. Since it integrates with Chrome so well, you can drag your bitmoji into most Google Apps as feed back for students.

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Sometimes my students leave me “suggested” feedback through Bitmojis as well. a

I recently used Bitmojis to enhance my Superhero Transformations activity for Geometry. It was a HUGE hit!

This idea came from a discussion with the AMAZING Sylvia Duckworth. I’ve included her slide deck full of ideas as well. My example is on there but so are a ton of other amazing examples of how to use Bitmoji comics.

Here is the example I gave my students. We also had a quick exploratory lesson about how to transform the Bitmojis through the arrange menu (or 2 finger click or key command) and a quick lesson on how to crop and mask images.

I was even more impressed after my students submitted their projects.

Example 1     Example 2    Example 3   Template to create your own (make a copy to edit it)

I created some examples for my non-math friends when I presented this to my school. How about a comic in a foreign language, or a political cartoon?

Now if you are a fan of Snapchat, you probably already know that Bitmojis are sticker options inside of it. You can also send “together” bitmojis in a message.

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me & my daughter

Tara Martin shared her idea about using Snapchat and bitmojis with book selections and a new hashtag was born – #booksnaps. You take a pic of a book selection you like, annotate & add your bitmoji. Read about it on Tara’s blog here.

booksnap-example

And if you don’t want to open the world of Snapchat in your classroom, this can be done through Google Drawing or Google Slides.

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A quick disclaimer on Bitmoji, there are a few that are not school appropriate. This isn’t any different from anything else you find online. Talk to your students about using Bitmoji responsibly and open up a whole new world for them.

Follow me on snapchat if you would like. image-1

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Categories: Bitmoji, Geometry, technology | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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