Friday, August 1, 2008

THING 7: Cool Google Tools

FINALLY back on board. The summer has been overwhelming and busy with events so now it's time to crunch and see if I can finish the Library2Play in the next four days. Here goes.....

Thing 7 is actually pretty easy. So many of these items I've been using for quite awhile. I have a Google calendar already, which is not so impressive. For my summer employment, we switched to Google and gmail last summer to coordinate our team's work. We each use the Google spreadsheet to submit our daily report, which is viewable by all team members. When a report or document is due by all, and if we are unable to meet, we create the initial document in Google documents, post it in our gmail and each of us adds or changes our items of input. VERY handy and a great way to consider planning and working together at school with fellow teachers. We aren't all off at the same time, and some do their planning from home. What a great way to extend our communication and planning!!

For several years, our classroom has used Google Earth. If there is an event going on, as with earthquakes, volcanoes, or last spring's big Texas sinkhole, we just click on the globe, zoom in on our location and off we go. The students seem very impressed, and yes we ALWAYS have to zoom in on the teacher's roof to show where she lives....they just seem to think that's cool and that somehow they know some top secret information.

I have albums posted on Picasa from various trips that I share with family, and if they are on topic with a lesson, then they are quick and easy to share with the students.

I could go on, as most of the tools from Google have been user friendly and very convenient for things going on for me at work and home.

Check out The image above is this summer's poster advertisement - details are posted on my "shared" calendar and a Picasa album is soon to follow. I'm in Oregon at the moment, and the scenery and weather are unbelievable.

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