More Google Updates

Some recent Google news:

Google is killing off Hangouts on Air in September [The Verge]

Meet Google Duo, a simple 1-to-1 video calling app for everyone [Official Google Blog]

Taking learning beyond classroom walls with new features for Back to School [Google for Education Blog]

  • Parents and guardians stay informed with Google Classroom email summaries
  • Annotations help students color outside the lines — and the classroom
  • More Expeditions thousands of miles away or inside the human body
  • More Google for Education features for busy teachers and curious minds

New Google Drive search feature makes for easier filtering to find your stuff (hasn’t hit the apps4pps domain yet)
google drive

Updates from ISTE: 4 new tools to help teachers do what they do best

Cyrus Mistry, Lead Product Manager, Devices and Content, Google for Education

Editor’s note: This week our Google for Education team will be joining thousands of educators at the annual ISTE conference. Follow along here and on Twitter for the latest news and updates.

“Teachers are great communicators, collaborators, creators and critical thinkers. It takes a teacher to empower students with these skills and create the leaders of our future. As technology becomes an increasingly integral component of our classrooms, the role of teachers becomes even more important.

Today at ISTE, we’re announcing four more ways for these everyday heroes to engage their classes and empower their students using Google tools. Look out for a deeper dive on each of these launches on the blog throughout this week.”

Read the full post here.

NEW! Google Slides Q&A

Screen Shot 2016-05-04 at 10.16.54 PM

From the Google Docs Blog:

Check this out… “a new feature in Google Slides: Slides Q&A. This update—rolling out globally today—helps speakers connect with their audience and collect real-time feedback. With a simple link displayed on a Slides presentation, audience members can submit questions from their phones, laptops, and tablets—and vote on those they want answered the most.

Slides Q&A makes it easy to interact with your audience—without having to worry about mics or moderators. Slides also helps you get your big ideas and stories on screen—without having to worry about wires or set up stress. Starting today, we’re improving this “Show up, don’t setup” experience in two ways:

You can now present your slides to a Hangout from your iPhone or iPad. So with just your phone or tablet and the Slides app, you can present to any screen using Chromecast, AirPlay or Hangouts.

And for those of you who like presenting from a computer, we’re introducing a new laser pointer on the web. Just in time for May the 4th (be with you).”

EdcampPDX, April 23, 2016


What is EdcampPDX? 
An edcamp is an informal unconference-style day of professional development organized and given by the local participants with sessions determined at the time of the event. Connect with other educators to share innovative instructional strategies and technologies that transform education for all students. Arrive with an idea for a session that you would like to lead or a discussion you would like to have and be ready to learn.

What are the goals of EdcampPDX?

  • Networking: Connect with educators in the Greater Portland/Oregon Area.
  • Instructional Practices: Learn new ideas, best practices, and/or tech integration ideas from other educators.
  • Personalization: Customize your own PD by suggesting, facilitating and attending sessions about topics that interest you!

Click here for FREE Registration!


Educate & Engage 2016: The Parent-Teacher Conference



After reading about this event that elementary and high school districts in suburban Chicago were sponsoring, I was motivated to coordinate a similar event for parents in Portland and the surrounding metropolitan area. Educate & Engage 2016: The Parent-Teacher Conference happened last Saturday and brought together regional education leaders to facilitate sessions offering parents an opportunity to hear about the roles and implications of technology both in and out of today’s modern classroom. With technology changing so rapidly, I often feel like there is a disconnect in terms of what a lot of parents understand about technology and how it is being used in schools today. Organizing this event was a response to that problem.

As this was the first time hosting such an event, parent turnout was small, but those in attendance indicated that they had meaningful conversations about their kids and technology. Some of the topics included sessions on social media, making and tinkering, Google Apps, cyberbullying, coding and computer science, 21st century skills and more. I’m very grateful to have a professional learning network that volunteered their time to facilitate these discussions with parents and answer questions. The long-term intention is to host other Educate & Engage events across the state in different districts. The framework has now been set up so that others can replicate this kind of parent-teacher conference within their own communities.