Saturday, June 22, 2019

How to Split Text into Columns in Google Docs

The Google Suite is great for its ease of use, but sometimes it's missing features that you are used to from the desktop programs that you are used to.  One of these things is taking text that is in one column and splitting it into many.  The classic example of this is when you have first and last names in one column and you want to split it into two.  Take note that anything in the columns to the right could get written over if the text goes into those columns.

To split text what you need to do is: highlight the column with the the text to split, click on the Data menu and then split text to columns.  You will now be prompted to choose the separator.  This is the trigger that Google Sheets will use to know when to split the text. Choose the one that applies to your data and your data will be split.  How easy is that?!

If you are more of a visual person, take a look at the video below.



Saturday, April 20, 2019

Create informal assessments and homework aligned to your standards

update: OpenEd is now ACT Academy 

OpenEd is a free website that contains educational videos, games and digital tools for classroom use.  You can search by topic, grade level, standard or keyword.  Once you find a resource you like you can favorite it, assign it to your students, add it to your Google Classroom or clone it so you can edit it.  If you want to assign it your students both you and your students will need accounts.  If you are a Google school there is Google single sign on, otherwise students will need to go through the process of creating an account.  The advantage to using the OpenEd platform to assign the activity is that there are premade questions that go along with the resources.

I tend to be a control freak and like to make my own questions (or at least edit the ones there).  I would probably create my own form where I embed the resource and then ask the questions that I want.  The advantage to this is that now I can distribute the form in the same method I share other resources with my students and they don't need to create an account on a new website.  While it is nice that OpenEd can keep track of who has mastered the assignments you give, you can also just do that yourself in the spreadsheet that you get as a result of the form.

For me I like it better as a place to search for resources and then put them on my own platform.  What would your preference be? 

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Free Math and Science Online Textbooks

“I can’t find my textbook!” “I don’t remember getting a textbook.” Does this sound familiar to you? That is what I kept hearing at the end of every year. Then I would have to go through a big hassle of collecting money from student to repurchase the outdated textbooks that I had. I hated having to worry about students losing textbooks or that I was always replacing textbooks that I didn’t even want that included too much information or not enough information. Enter FlexBooks. FlexBooks are online textbooks from a company called CK12. I instantly liked them for many reasons, but the two big ones were that I could customize the book and that it could be posted on my website and downloaded by the students. This video does a great job of explaining how they work. While not every subject has a FlexBook they have a large list of books that include math and science books for elementary, middle and high school along with some other areas such as Writing, Astronomy, History and Engineering.

So, this sounds good you say, but how can I really use it in my classroom? I picked out a textbook that I wanted to use and then went through it to delete the things that don’t apply to my curriculum. I also added in some information that wasn’t there that I wanted to make sure my students had in their book. You can also include links to worksheets (CK12 has a workbook that goes along with most of their textbooks). Once it’s created you can save it as a PDF and post it on a web page or e-mail it to students. Even better, students can put the PDF on their computers, phones, Kindles, IPads, Nooks or other eReader. If you don’t want to customize your book you can find select FlexBooks already in Kindle or Nook/IPad/Android format.

Am I convincing you yet? Maybe you want to make sure you have a teacher’s edition to refer to or a book or worksheets or labs. Well, you got it! The workbooks that are available can also be customized so can you make them fit your classroom. I usually post them on my website and the students can have access to them all the time (no more “I lost it.”)

Looking for more? CK12 has a more interactive way of presenting information that allows you pull short concepts along with chapters into an online interactive “book” Many of the concepts include video clips and interactive quizzes.

Do you use textbooks in your classroom? 

crossposted on by Science Blog - SavvySecondaryScience

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

The easiest, free test and worksheet generator

I haven't mentioned Problem-Attic in several years, but I thought that I'd bring it up again.  Since I mentioned it last the number of questions available has more than doubled.  It is so easy to search through the question bank and create tests and quizzes.  For me, it's the only test generator I use.  With all of the questions available, why would I pay for something else?

Take a look at the video below to see what Problem-Attic is like and how easy it is to use.


If you want to see my previous posts you can find them here and here.

What do you use to create tests and quizzes?

Monday, January 21, 2019

Turning Google Docs Footnotes into Endnotes



In my schoolwe don't ask the students to use footnotes.  Rather we have students do a works cited page at the end of their document.  If you are school that uses Google then you might be familiar with the autocitation feature of Google Docs.  This is really helpful for students, but the problem is that it creates footnotes, not endnotes.  In the past, I have had my students copy the footnotes and paste them at the end of their paper.  While not terrible, students often forget or don't capture the whole citation.  I recently came across a Google Doc add-in called Endnote Generator and I think it's just what my students need.  Is this something that you think you would use with your students?  Do you know of something similar?