Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Chrome Bookmark Bar Not Syncing?

An art teacher at my school was having trouble syncing her Chrome bookmark bar on her work computer with her personal computer. Her personal computer Chrome bookmark bar was totally different her work computer Chrome bookmark bar. 

Here are the steps in syncing the bookmark bar correctly:

  1. Make sure “Bookmark” is checked in your advanced sync settings (Go to Preferences)

  2. Pick one of your computers and log out of Chrome

  3. Go to Bookmarks>Bookmark Manager and delete all your bookmarks (this should delete all the bookmarks on your bar)

  4. Sign into your Chrome (this should sync your bookmark bar)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Administrators: Use iPad to Fill Out Teacher Observation Forms

This past weekend I researched some ways for administrators to assess their teachers with iPads to make the process smoother and easier for them. I found two methods for administrators to document their findings during observations: Google Forms and Pages.

The observation form included the teacher standards from the Virginia Dept. of Education (2012). The form was divided into 7 sections, each including a teacher standards and its benchmarks. 

[I would like to note that the iPad’s Google Drive app does not currently allow tables to be edited so it is not a good option yet. I am sure Google will update the app to a version that will have this feature.]

Pages on the iPad: This method allows you to quickly fill out the observational forms and share it with teachers. 

  1. Recommend using your iMac or Macbook to create the document (Tables are great for creating checkboxes)

  2. Email the document to your iPad (if you have iCloud, you will not need to do this)

  3. Open the document using Pages 

  4. Duplicate the document and rename the document (ex. David Lee Observation Form)

  5. After completing the form, share document via email to the teacher

Google Forms: This method is best if you want to collect observational data, but will not communicate the results to the teachers.  

  1. Create text questions for the name of the teacher and observation date

  2. Add two sets of checkbox questions for each teacher standard (one set for completed standards, and the other for incomplete)

  3. Provide paragraph section for each teacher standard.

Below shows an image of the “results” from my form. As you can see, it groups all your results into one Google Spreadsheet document which makes it difficult to share with individual teachers. You would not be able to share this information individually, unless you copy and paste each teacher’s results into an email, which would be tedious. 

Below is an image of the option to see your data in bar graph form. As you can see the “teachers” who were evaluated demonstrated the first 3 benchmarks masterfully, but didn’t do well with the other 5 benchmarks. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

4 essential Chrome extensions for students to install for safe browsing

To install these extensions, go to the Chrome Web Store, type in the name of the extension and then click on “Add to Chrome.”

1. AdBlock: Extension that blocks the ad banners you see on the top, bottom, and sides of web pages!

AdBlock for Chrome!  Block all advertisements on all web pages, even Facebook, Youtube, and Hulu.

2. Adblock Plus (Beta): Gets rid of YouTube ads!

3. Do Not Track Plus: Extension that stops the web, data brokers, ad networks and social networks from collecting data about you. 

1. Keep My Opt-Outs: Google has done an amazing job of personalizing ads based on your interests and preferences. However some people don’t want this type of data tracking , so here is the extension for it. Your Google ads are going to change with more repeat ads and ads that you won’t really be interested in. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

Hello world!

Welcome to WordPress.com! This is your very first post. Click the Edit link to modify or delete it, or start a new post. If you like, use this post to tell readers why you started this blog and what you plan to do with it.

Happy blogging!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Presidential Elections Simulation for HS

You are the new democratic/republican/third party’s presidential candidate for 2016!

Visitors of this presidential elections simulator can choose their political party and try to get elected as the President of the United States of America!

Candidates need to pick five issues they would like to establish for their campaign platform, agree or disagree with controversial statements, and choose your three key issues (education, national security, etc). There is a “Learn More” option that gives you detailed information about presidential elections. 

This simulation is pretty complex so I would only recommend high school teachers to implement this in their curriculum. I would also recommend teachers giving students detailed instructions on how to play the game, and requiring them to read the game’s “Tips and Help” section. Additionally, this game can be really tricky. For example, I hosted a fundraiser to gain campaign money, but I chose a fundraiser that was contradicting to bill I voted for in the past. So I was unable to raise any funds! 

Interactive Shakespeare Website: How his work was subject to change

Students can learn about Shakespeare’s famous works and how they have changed over time. The Shakespeare’s: Subject to Change website includes Shakespeare’s: 

  • language (invented words, common expressions, creative insults).

  • writing process.

  • altered texts.

  • plays that were printed.

  • multiple versions of his famous play, Hamlet.

Create a Roller Coaster to Learn About Physics!

Cable in the Classroom has created a simulation game called Coaster Crafter that helps students from 5th to 12th grade learn physics. 

Storyline: Bruno, the owner of the coaster park, and Brunette, his daughter, has hired you as an intern to improve all the coasters. You will get to design your new coasters yourself, but first you will need to complete the design challenges that will teach you about:

  • Inertia

  • Velocity

  • Acceleration

  • Gravity

  • Mass

  • Friction

  • PE and KE

  • Momentum