Monday, January 16, 2017

Using the New File Upload in Google Forms

Okay, so the new Google Forms "Upload Response" may not be super new, but I haven;t had a chance to use it until now. (Truth is, I didn't have a good reason to until today.) But, it's super easy to use and I can see lots of great ways to use this in the future.

Rather than type out directions, I've created a quick video tutorial for you. Enjoy!

Friday, April 1, 2016

Friday Freebie: The Most Dangerous Writing App!

Writing today's blog post is going to be a real challenge. It will be challenging because I'm using a FREE website called The Most Dangerous Writing App is a web-based simple text editor that forces users to type without thinking (or without stopping).

The premise is that people spend so much time THINKING about what they want to say that they never say anything. In this example I went the site and selected a 5 minute challenge. A text editor popped up and I've begun typing. If I stop typing for more than 5 seconds, the app will DELETE EVERYTHING I've typed. (In fact, this is my second attempt because I failed the first time!)

I still have 2 minutes left!

I can see English teachers using this in class to get students to just write. Don't think. Write! They could give students a prompt and then tell them all to start at the same time. I would HIGHLY recommend you start with just 5 minutes. The next level is 10 minutes, and I can't imagine doing that.

55 seconds to go!

Anyway, head on over to the site and give it a try. It really is much harder than you think. Thanks for reading and give me examples of how you might use this at your school.
Thanks again and hope to hear from


What's written above is exactly what I typed in the app during my five minute exercise. I did fix spelling errors but did not go back to fix any grammatical errors. Tons of thanks to Lori Fuller for sharing this site with me!

Friday, March 4, 2016

Friday Freebie: "Appear In" Your Own Video Conference

First and foremost, thanks to the incredible Miguel Guhlin for letting me know about today's Friday Freebie which I dub "The World's Easiest Video Conference System." It's  And, it truly is easy.

Navigate to and simply start a video conference. When you get to the landing page, you'll see auto-generated unique URL's for your session. It comes up with some crazy names. The first time I tried it, my video conference URL was One of my student tech interns had to point out to me that you can simply create your own URL buy typing in the text box where the unique names are being generated. (Smart kids!). So, I started a new session at

And that was it! I was in and could send the link to anyone else. All an attendee has to do is go to that URL and they're in too. You can have up to 8 people in a conference. Now, to "claim" a URL, you need an account, but it's FREE! So now, is my personal room forever. And, you can claim other rooms too!

Once a room is yours, you can change the background, invite others, force guests to "knock" before allowing them in, or even kick people out of your room if you need to. There's a built u chat feature and some fun special effects you can add on the video as well.

It's truly is a great tool. Give it a try and invite me in to your room when you do!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Wednesday Weigh In: A View From the Outside

Today's "Wednesday Weigh In" brings us an interesting perspective of the use of technology in schools and among students - specifically schools and students in America. This week, I had the pleasure of visiting with Juan, a student from Colombia spending his senior year in San Antonio.

I hope you enjoy this great interview. Please leave comments for Juan and I'll be sure to pass them along!

Friday, February 19, 2016

Friday Freebie: It's All About Me!

Okay, it's not really all about me. But, today's Friday Freebie may, at first, sound just a tad egotistical. However, the free service has great merit, especially if you present a lot.

Usually, at the end of a presentation, you want to share your contact info with your audience, so what do you do? You add a slide with your name, your title, your district, your email address, your Facebook page, your blog url, your twitter handle, your Google+ page, and on and on and on. Then your audience scrambles to write it all down or snap a quick photo of the slide.

Wouldn't is be easier to share one URL with them that has all your contact info? That's the idea behind And, it's so simple.

Create a free account. Choose a theme. Add the links you want from their list of popular social media icons or type in your own links. Upload a picture if you'd like. Then choose a unique URL and publish! That's it. Then, use that URL to share all your contact info easily.

Check mine out at and then go make your own. This time, it's all about YOU!