I had heard a TON about In-N-Out Burger. Heard that the food was amazing. Heard that it was an experience I should try.
While on vacation in California with my family recently, we made a stop at an In-N-Out Burger. It did not disappoint.
Our burgers were tasty. The tiny menu surprised me but made it easy to order. The employees were very friendly!
I posted pictures on Facebook, sharing that we had finally made this West Coast experience happen in our family. Then, the comments started coming in …
“Did you know there’s a secret menu?”
“Did you get your fries ‘animal style’???”
I didn’t know the secrets, and I felt like I left part of my maiden In-N-Out Burger experience on the table! It made me think, “Why didn’t someone tell me about that?!?”
Knowing what’s out there — especially what’s hidden below the visible surface — can open up a whole new world to us.
Working with Google tools in the classroom can be very much like this. Features to apps we use every day, like Google Docs, Slides and Drawings, can get hidden in menus or behind an ambiguous icon.
Here are 10 things to order off the “secret menu” of G Suite:
Have you ever opened a Google Doc with images in it and wanted to save the images? (Hint: Right-clicking the image doesn’t do it.) You can grab images out of a Google Doc by doing this:
There it sits. The paint roller icon is on the far left of the toolbar in many G Suite tools. But what in the world is it for? This one has perplexed me for a long time.
PDF files are small. They’re easy to read. Plus, they lock text into place so it can’t me moved around. Instead of sending someone a link to your Google Doc, how about sending them a link that forces them to download a PDF of that Google Doc instead?
DYK you can send PDF versions of your files via this URL change? pic.twitter.com/XamFoJMH2v
— Google Docs (@googledocs) October 24, 2018
Using a shared Google Slides presentation for an entire class is amazing. It lets every student have his/her own slide in a shared slide presentation. It creates a sort of digital community inside that slide presentation where each student can work AND see what everyone else is working on.
If you’ve never tried it and want a step-by-step on how to set it up, check out this post on creating a shared slide presentation where your students can work collaboratively.
Want to see each student working on his/her own work — all at the same time — AND live?
Check out this tip I learned on Alice Keeler’s blog …
You can’t format text in Google Classroom assignments or announcements. But that doesn’t mean you can’t put fancy text in them! The “Cool Fancy Text Generator” will let you copy all sorts of fun fonts into your Google Classroom posts to highlight individual words or phrases.
I learned about this from Tony Vincent, who is a great follow on Twitter!
🎉 There’s a workaround for making text 𝐛𝐨𝐥𝐝, 𝘪𝘵𝘢𝘭𝘪𝘤, and 𝕗𝕒𝕟𝕔𝕪 in #GoogleClassroom!
Copy text generated at https://t.co/k6VJOTAJrm
— Tony Vincent (@tonyvincent) June 27, 2018
Often, teachers will create a template for students in Google Slides. Students get their copy of it and do their work in it, moving objects around, adding text, etc. If you use templates in Google Slides, chances are someone will accidentally move something you put in place! Create immovable backgrounds instead for objects that need to stay in place! Here’s how you do it …
Here’s an example of how that might look in a blog post about creating moveable digital activities with Google Slides.
In my former life, I worked in newspapers before switching to education. When designing a newspaper page in a program like Publisher or Quark Xpress or InDesign, there are these things we called “tool lines.” They were a simple line you could put on the screen that helped you line objects up. However, they weren’t seen when you published (i.e. printing on paper, exporting to image or PDF, etc.).
Thankfully, Google Slides and Drawings have added these “tool lines” and they’re called guides. Here’s how you use them:
When Google made this option live in Google Slides, it blew my mind. You can present a slide presentation and turn on live closed captions. When you talk to your audience (your students, other teachers, etc.), your microphone will pick up what you’re saying and Google will display it automatically at the bottom of the screen. This is FANTASTIC for students with disabilities (hearing, etc.) and even just to reinforce what you’re saying for students.
Note: The captions are being generated live and in real time, so they may not be perfectly accurate all the time. They could also be distracting, so you might ask your audience before using them. Plus, you might mention to your audience that they’re being generated in real time and aren’t part of a video conferencing platform or a video they’re watching.
Google Slides lets teachers (student presenters, really anyone) collect questions from their audiences while they speak. When you collect those questions and comments from your audience, it’s possible to go back and view them again later. They’re all saved by Google for future use.
There’s a good chance you’ll watch a YouTube video that has some content you don’t really need. The number keys on your laptop, computer or Chromebook can help you breeze through the video by skipping unnecessary content. Try it out …
If you’re using a mobile device (smartphone, tablet, etc.), there’s a solution for you, too! Double-tapping the right side of the screen in the YouTube app skips forward 10 seconds. (Left skips back 10 seconds.)
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Interested in having Matt present at your event or school? Contact him by e-mail!
Matt is scheduled to present at the following upcoming events:
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