Category: G Suite

Yes! Another G Suite tool that can be utilized by your students! In this post, I want to share with you 7 ideas for using Google Sites in your classroom. Google Sites seemed to be on the backburner when it came to updates to G Suite. Now, it appears that Google is giving it the love it needs! It was only about two years ago that the first facelift happened. For a while, it was called New Google Sites, but I think we can forget about that name since we have Classic Google Sites.7 Ideas for Using Google Sites

Google Sites allows you to easily develop a website by adding pages and elements within the page. Users can choose from custom layouts that have different elements laid out in a nice view. Sites allows for a variety of embed content. All you have to do is paste in the code! You can also add in anything from your Google Drive to have visible and accessible right on the page! Its drag-and-drop functionality makes it easy to structure that even the youngest of students can find success!

So, without further adieu, here are 7 ideas for using Google Sites!

G Suite Voice

This past week, I have been working with a teacher who is looking to enhance one of her novel units. In the past, she has used literature circle roles, where each student is assigned a particular task in the group, such as vocabulary finder, illustrator, discussion director, etc. She still wanted to keep those three roles but wanted to make them more meaningful because, let’s be honest, the vocabulary finder copies the definition from a Google search and has no idea what it means, the illustrator draws some stick figure picture, and the discussion director asks basic questions. So, read…

G Suite Reading Storytelling


8 Ideas for Using Google Forms.png

I love G Suite tools! They have been a game changer in my teaching career, and I wish I had access to these from my first year! Besides that, they just keep getting better!

Google Slides is one of my favorite G Suite tools, but Google Forms is close behind. When you first think aboutGoogle Forms, you are most likely thinking about conducting a survey to get opinions. While you can certainly use it to collect this data, the real power behind Google Forms is how you utilize your data and make technology work for you! Check out some ideas on how you can make Google Forms work for you!

Feedback G Suite

8 Things to Try with Google Slides

I love Google Slides! I have learned from my professional learning network (PLN) so many different uses for it! When I first came over to Google Apps for Education (now known as G Suite), I just believed that the products were the same as Microsoft Office. Slides was to PowerPoint as Docs was to Word. But when these products become more innovative with collaboration and cloud storage, the potential uses for these products increases dramatically! Here are eight different things for you to try with Google Slides.

I created an infographic about 8 different ways to use Google Slides in your classroom, and I provide more detail in this post.

G Suite

One of the greatest advancements in technology is the ability to video conference with anyone from all over the world! With high-speed internet and a variety of hosts, it is easy to connect with people from around the world, and it seems like it is going to be a more natural thing for our students as technology further develops. While meeting in person has its own benefits, you are limited by a variety of factors.

As I work with teachers, my hope is to get them to try some activities that break down the four walls of their classroom and allow them to connect and collaborate with people from all over the world. Often times at Christian schools, we get caught up in our own community. With the rise of social media, our students are connecting with people from the area but also with people from other states. This is something that we should take advantage of!

Mystery Skype/Hangouts

This is definitely one of the most popular ways of using video conferencing within the classroom. I remember when I first heard about this! How amazing an opportunity for our students to be able to practice the skills they are learning while also interacting with people from a different global area!

If you aren’t sure what exactly I am talking about, here is a brief overview:

  • A teacher connects with another teacher from a different location. They find a time to conduct a video chat
  • The classes come up with roles (See Mystery Hangouts EduProtocol by @debbiemaddox), such as facilitator, question asker, researcher, etc.
  • The teachers connect via Skype or Google Hangouts (or other forms of video conferencing).
  • Facilitators introduce the class, and then each class takes turn asking yes or no questions.
  • As questions are answered, researchers try to pinpoint the location and help develop new questions.
  • Once locations have been guessed, classes can engage in a chat about the other class to learn more about them and their location.

As students interact with other classes, they begin to see that people around the world are more similar than different. We have these differences that are developed because of culture, but we are all designed in the image of God!

Here are some helpful links for getting started:

Mystery Skype – Microsoft in Education

Laura Candler – Mystery Skype Game

Mystery Hangouts Google+ Community

How to Set Up a Mystery Hangout YouTube Video

Bring in an Expert

Do you remember being more interested in the archaeologist explaining a topic more than your teacher? There is something about learning from an expert that causes people to listen. Authority is already established, and people trust that person based on his/her work. While we can’t always find someone in our local community to teach about a topic (although I recommend getting someone in person!), we can find ways to connect with experts from around the world! It doesn’t matter if that person is a published author or a B-list celebrity. Just by having experience in a field or subject matter makes that person relevant to your students.

Think about some ways you might accomplish this in your classroom. Are you currently reading a novel? Obviously, you can write a letter to the author and maybe get a response. However, try reaching out to the author to see if your class can interview him/her through a video conference. You would be surprised at the engagement level this would bring to your class!

Are you exploring an area but don’t have the funds to travel there? Try bringing in an expert to give a virtual field trip! Many state and national parks and exhibits provide these options to talk with an expert. Check out the Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration for ways to connect with others.

Globally Connect

Even though you may not be a social studies teacher doesn’t mean you shouldn’t connect with other classrooms. Allow your students to be the experts on a topic and be brought in to a classroom to teach a concept or idea. Allow students to communicate in the language they are learning with an authentic audience. Collaborate together by doing a book study. The work your students do will more than likely be of higher quality because they are creating for an authentic audience.


Technology has changed drastically! The opportunities are students have are exponentially greater than what we ever had as students. Don’t deprive your students of authentic learning experiences because you don’t feel comfortable! Take the opportunity to venture into something new. If you fail, make sure you are failing forward and learning from each experience. Don’t we want our students to do that as well? You are the teacher! Model risk-taking and reflection so that our students will also be willing to try new things!

G Suite Video Conference

In case you haven’t heard, Google has added another amazing tool for users called Google Tour Creator. Google Tour Creator allows users to create a virtual tour using 360-degree images as well as adding points of interest on the 360-degree image, similar to what you might experience in a Google Expedition. This seems that with this step, Google will eventually provide people the opportunity to create their own expeditions. How to do it You can get started at the Tour Creator site. From here you can create a tour. Just give it a name and some details and you are…

G Suite Virtual Tours

In my most recent post, I shared different ways to give feedback in Google Docs using comments, automatic substitution, Kaizena, Google Keep, and screencasting. There is one extension that I had heard of but did not include it into that post. The last time that I had used the extension CheckMark, it had a default list of comments that could not be customized. However, the developer listened to user feedback and updated the extension so that users could add more comment labels and descriptions. This makes it an amazing tool to use to give feedback, and my recommendation would be…

Feedback G Suite

Teaching writing can certainly take its toll on a teacher. When you sit down to grade that stack of essays, it can seem like you are torturing yourself! Hopefully buried within that stack are gems of pure joy where you can say, “Yes! This is amazing!” However, we all know that it takes time to get there. Giving students feedback on their written work is an important aspect of helping them grow as writers. However, the traditional method has been: students turn in the written draft, you write all over it making marks that the student doesn’t understand and hoping…

Feedback G Suite

In case you haven’t noticed, most of my blog posts have covered a specific topic: immediate feedback. In my post Five Tips for a Technology-Infused PE Class, I talked about using Google Forms with pre-filled data to grade students’ performance as well as using Formative. I also gave my take on Kahoot!, Quizizz, and Quizlet in a post about quiz games. And one of my first blog posts was about Four Tools for Instant Feedback, featuring Khan Academy, No Red Ink, Quizlet (again), and Spelling City. The reason why I am promoting this so much is that I believe it provides…

G Suite