Monday, May 20, 2013

11 Steps To Create A Google Plus Community For Your Class

One of the best services Google+  provides to its users is called " communities ". Any Google Plus user can easily create and host his/her community on the cloud and in a matter of few clicks.For us in education  we can use this service to create a community for our class. In this virtual space, you will get to share with your students resources, links, and also get them to participate and contribute in it. You can also create class events with dates, location, and more details and share them with your students and their parents as well. Needless to say that you can use Google Hangout right from your community to hold video conferences with your students.

1-  Head over to your Google Plus 

On your Google Plus home page, click on " communities " in left hand side and then click on " create a community. "

2-  Private or Public

Now choose whether you want your community to be private ( only members you invite can join ) or public. 

If you set it for public , make sure to select the permission setting : no one can join or  yes a moderator needs to approve

3- Name your community

Provide a name for your community then click on " create community "

4- Pick a photo for your community
Click on " pick a photo " as is shown in the screenshot below and download your photo

5- Write a tagline
Type in some descriptive words to tag you community

6- Write a description
Write a description about your community. Let others know what it is that you talk about in this community and invite them to share and join in the conversation

7- Add categories

Now start adding your categories. For instance, you can add a category for lesson plans, another one for tutorials, ....etc

Once you are done with your editing click on done. You can always re-edit your community features at any time you want by clicking on the action menu an selecting edit

8- Invite people

9- Start a hangout

You can use this feature to start a video hangout with your students or colleagues. 

10- Create an event

You can easily create an event to share with others by simply clicking on " create event " button. Provide the title of your event, the date, location , and details of your event. You can then invite your friends either through Google Plus or by sending them emails. You can also host your event on Google Hangout.

11- Sharing 

Use the sharing buttons to share links, photos, videos...etc.

March & April

10 Google Plus Communities Every Teacher Should Know About

If you want to use Google Plus communities to extend your PLN and grow professionally, here are some great communities recommended for you to follow.

1- Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

2- Google Apps for Education

This is a community of people interested in Google Apps for education. Connection, Discussion, Sharing, Discovery ... with Google Apps for Education.

3- Educational Technology

A community of education professionals, technologists, students, and anyone else interested in sharing discussion of all things tech in education.

4- School Technology Leadership

This is an open space for anyone who's interested in effective technology leadership in P-12 schools. Please share widely and contribute as desired!

5- Educational Leadership

A community focused on educational leadership. Principals, superintendents, central office administrators, professors, policymakers, etc.

6- Connected Learning

This Community will be a welcoming space where learners of all ages, and from all walks of life, can come together to share their connected learning experiences, challenges, and thoughts.

7- iPad Ed

This is a community for educators utilizing or planning to utilize iPads and other mobile devices to engage students and optimize learning. 

8- STEM Educators

This is a community where STEM educators can meet to share ideas and experiences. Everyone is welcome here, however, because everyone is involved in the education process. If you have a passion for science, technology, engineering, or mathematics education, you're in the right place.

9-  Google Docs and Drive

Welcome to the Google Docs and Drive community, where we discuss new features of Google Drive, discuss about wanted features or concepts, and solve problems for individuals!

10- Technology and Innovation in Education
A community for the intersection of research and practice relating to innovation in teaching and learning. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

February 2013

Develop your Personal Learning Network

I have been following a lot of blogs and learning. I have not contributed. I am still in the lurking stage. I am looking around, trying to find what all is there. I will read and follow them. I follow some on Twitter, some groups on Facebook.
I am also in a Science Collaborative at Region 4. Meeting educators from all over Houston, sharing lessons, tips, techniques and growing and learning has been an eyeopener for me this year. The Collaborative has great workshops that are offered free to us. Lots of free resources and materials are provided. And more importantly the support from all the teachers. 
Being an eTrainer has been an enriching experience for me. Learning new technology and then using it in our classrooms as well as teaching it to our campus teachers has been great. I feel so good to see all the teachers trying some tools in their classroom.
I am trying to Connect ( reach out), Contribute (share, post),Converse (sharing and responding and building relationships) and Request (for support, will be fruitful).

January 2013

Assessment of the tools.
I use a lot of tool in the classroom. The ones that the students enjoy working with are Edmodo (ease of use, feels like facebook to the kids), Google App (save all their work in one place,make ppt,collaborate), Go Animate (kids can show their creative side), Stupeflix (ease of use), Prezi (easy to use), iMovie, ShowMe, Educreations (both of these used on an iPad), Glogster ( easy for the students to make an electronic poster) , Dropbox, ActivInspire, Popplet (mind map), Skype (students like to hear from someone other than their teacher once in a while), BrainPop, Near Pod, Sky View, Google Earth, Class Dojo (classroom management), Splashtop (use to project my desktop), Apple TV and many more. The one I stopped using was xtranormal. Earlier it was O.K then the themes and characters were not very appropriate for my 6th grade students.
I woulds like to try many more tools but the biggest issue has been time.