Sunday, October 24, 2021

Chrome Remote Desktop Discoveries You Can Do

I make it no secret that working with teachers and students is my dream job. When I shared Freedom from Your Desk You Can Do two weeks ago, I wasn't sure where it would go. After all, it's an extension that has been around for awhile - but I had not used it until recently. After setting it up with one teacher, I also shared it out to all of the teachers in my district. Thanks to them, I am following up to share what they discovered and shared back to me! I think it makes this extension "that" much better.

I knew this extension would be helpful to a lot of teachers but what I didn't expect was that after I shared it, that I would continue to learn more. And these are super helpful things to know about what this extension can do! 

Here's what I've learned about this extension:

  • Jessica shared how she was able to print items from her desktop ... while she was in the copier room! That's right! Being able to trigger a print job from items on her desktop via her chromebook - wow! 
    • Guess who'll never "lose" another print job ... or have to make several trips back and forth to the copy room?
  • Leah shared how she uses the non-mirroring ability on her desktop (so her projector acts as a second screen) and with this extension she can see BOTH "screens" on her desktop.
    • It's kind of small, but possible. 
    • Think how many screens she has now? Unlimited on her chromebook and unlimited on her dual screens on her desktop! 
  • Amy shared how she was able to control her desktop from off campus!
    • She said she even printed remotely.
    • At home sick? Want to set your desktop up for your sub? Just needs to be powered on, right?

Anyone else's mind blown right now? No one goes into teaching thinking they know everything ... but this unexpected learning is always so fun!

If you want additional freedom from your desktop, I highly recommend the Chrome Remote Desktop extension. What will YOU discover? Please be sure to share back so we can all learn.

And with all of the shortages, is there anything YOU can share? It doesn't have to be a full lesson. It's doesn't have to be a big package or tool. Do you have tips or tricks or ways of doing things that make your teaching life easier? Can you share something ... even if you think it's silly or too small ... it might be "the thing" that helps one other teacher. 

Additional Resources to help:

Sunday, October 17, 2021

URL Hack: Force a copy of a Google Calendar event You Can Do

I am constantly learning. And I enjoy it. (Probably a good thing I became a teacher, eh?) 

There are many different reasons why I learn. Sometimes it's because I am told I have to learn something; sometimes it's because I want to learn something; sometimes it's purely by accident; and sometimes it's because I am so intrigued that I am driven to learn something. This final reason is how I am able to write this today. It's going to be short and it has a VERY specific purpose. But, man! Was I GIDDY when I learned this!

I received an email from a group I'm part of announcing an upcoming event. Included in the email was a link to add the event to my calendar; it was not shared directly to me. I take advantage of this every chance I get. My Google Calendar is one of my top used tools and one of my favorite tools. This time, however, I stopped and wondered ... "How does Michael do that?" (Michael being the one who sent the invite.) I couldn't stop thinking about it. No lie. I Googled it ... I looked at the URL he sent ... I looked at calendar events I create ... for a day or so. 

Then I spied it.

Giddy! Seriously. I felt like I had discovered a secret treasure! I quickly sent Michael an email to ask if I had discovered some "Google-magic". His reply told me his process was a bit different and that he wasn't aware of this URL hack I was asking about.

Wait for it.

Ready? Each calendar event has a specific URL, right? I spied "/copy/" in his URL. I tried it & JACKPOT! It is so similar to the force a copy URL hack for other Google Apps that I wondered how I hadn't even thought about it before. 

It's far easier for me to do a quick little video to show you, so here it is:

Thank you Michael for inspiring me & responding to my question!

Did this help? I hope so ... I know I probably won't use this very often, but man! Learning this was exciting! Do you know of other URL hacks that I might be interested in? Please let me know - either below in a comment or reach out on social media - my links are listed below my picture.

Other resources like this you might be interested:

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Freedom from Your Desk You Can Do

Wow. What I had thought would be a week off from writing ended up being a little more than two months! I know I don't owe you an explanation, but here it is ... life got busy. And this year is tough. Tougher than last year. Something had to give. But I'm back today with a good one!

A few weeks ago, a teacher asked me about using an app on her phone to control her desktop. What she had wanted to try didn't work, BUT I had just had a conversation with fellow Shake Up Learning Trainer, Susan Vincentz. She had just trained her teachers on an extension that allowed them to remotely control their desktops. A quick message to Susan gave me the name of the extension and today, I'm sharing it with you. I've helped several more teachers set this up and it seems to me a huge improvement for teachers!

The set up isn't difficult, but it has several steps on two computers. In my district, each teacher has an iMac as their desktop and a chromebook as their portable device. Doing this it isn't difficult, but it takes a minute to wrap your head around it. They do not want to be tied down to their desktop as they present, but in order to control the tabs, slides, volume, and more, they'd have to be right there. With this extension - you can be FREE!

It's all about a single extension you add to your Chrome account that allows you to control your ENTIRE desktop via a second device. It really is mind-blowing the first several times you think about it. It's a 2 part process, so to help with this, I made 2 videos to share. Really, it's more about being confident in "following the clicks" as you install the extension. And be sure to write down your PIN! That is key in making this process work!

Part 1: Installing on your desktop (or your main computer)

Part 2: Installing on your second device

Congratulations! You've done it! I'm excited to share this with more people - if you use this, please let me know - I'd love to hear about it! If you have questions or comments, please reach out, too! All my contact info is near the top of this page.

Additional Resources to help:

Sunday, August 1, 2021

Summer Learning I did, and You Still Can Do

Before the new school year kicks in, I wanted to recap the learning I've done and shared this past summer. I'll be starting back to school in about 2 weeks. How has time has gone by so quickly?

This past summer wasn't as busy for me as the summer before, but I didn't sit around either! I needed a break more than I thought I did and I was grateful my family was able to go on our COVID-delayed vacation in June.

I know many of us are STILL taking a much deserved break, but some are busily preparing for the upcoming school year and looking for some learning. Rest assured, these learning opportunities aren't going anywhere and plenty of others will join them.

The first item I want to point out is the "Professional Learning" tab at the top of my site. I have been collecting free &/or low cost professional development for awhile now and have it all here on this page. There are filters at the top you can use to better guide your search along with the ability to do a keyword search. There is a TON out there ... so be sure to take a look. And come back in a week or so, I'm sure I'll be adding to it.

Next, I want to share the summer series I did with Dr. Desiree Alexander, of Educator Alexander. She is my Google Innovator Coach and who I also did an Intro to Google Series with during the summer of 2020. BOTH of these series and their resources can be found on our site, "Level Up with Google". The Level Up series is at the top and the intro series is at the bottom. There are 6 two hour webinars in the Level Up, covering Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, Drawings & Jamboard, and Sites. The Intro series has 10 two hour webinars covering Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, Drive, Classroom, Forms as Assessments, collection of Google Apps, Chrome, and Sites. 

AND I was able to do my first in-person presentations last week at a great conference here in Cincinnati called "High AIMs". Wow! Did it feel both great and weird at the same time! I presented twice - once solo, and once with a colleague. For my solo session, I share numerous ways you can use Google Sheets in the classroom (including pre-made templates you can go ahead and share). For the joint session, Brittney Priore and I share our brand new project, Tech With Littles. Brittney is a 1st grade teacher and she and I teamed up to create Tech with Littles to further help and promote the "purposeful integration of technology" in your classroom, with a focus on the littlest learners. I'm SUPER excited about this ... it's not just activities you can do, but also the thinking behind them and the WHY we need to purposefully integrate technology into our classrooms. Both sessions and their resources are on "My Presentations" tab. (You will need to search for earlier events, as they are over.)

My summer isn't over, yet, and I still have some presentations to go. The next will be at the G-Tech Summit this Wednesday, August 4. I will do 3 presentations. You can still sign up for this awesome, FREE, and virtual summit and join in all the goodies! Jon Corippo and Jake Miller will be doing keynotes so you definitely do NOT want to miss out! You can sign up - for FREE - on their website, G-Tech Summit. All of my sessions are showing on "My Presentations" tab already.

This week on Friday, I will present twice at the SPARCC Conference, hosted by Eric Curts and friends. One session is a pre-recorded session "Start Your Digital Year on the Right Foot" and one live - virtual - session "Start Google Classroom on the Right Foot". This, too, is FREE, and you can still sign up on the main SPARRC Conference site. You will find links to both the live and prerecorded sessions here. I'd love to "see" you!

And finally, to wrap it up, before summer wraps up, I will also be recording my presentations for Kasey Bell's "Shake Up Learning Back to School Conference". It's not until later in September, but being pre-recorded sessions, so I need to get mine done before school kicks into gear. As Kasey would say, I'm #SuperExcited for this! YOU can register - it's FREE, all on-line, and you can watch and re-watch as many of them as you'd like. There is the ability to upgrade your access with her "All Access Pass" and hold onto access to these videos AND so many more of her wonderful classes, if you are interested.

Bottom line - as much as I needed and wanted a break, my break didn't happen by turning my brain off. I keep learning everyday and I've enjoyed doing so. I hope you are interested in at least one of the above learnings - let me know which one helps you the most!

Reach out with comments below or any of the social media links above. I'd love to hear from you! Enjoy!

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Summer Sunday Tip #7: Goals You Can Do

This is my last Summer Sunday Tip and it's all about looking forward. If you've followed me for awhile, you know that I am a goal-setter. I am a BIG believer in goals and I think you should, too!

I set goals professionally.

I set goals personally.

I set goals physically.

I set goals mentally.

I haven't always written them down, and I've shared them out even less. I believe in goal setting, but I'm also afraid to share with others my goals, in case I don't succeed ... I know I need to be better about this. It's not that I'm afraid I won't reach the goal, it's more that I don't want others to see me as a failure. (It's crazy, right!?!)

This is my FINAL "Summer Sunday Tip" - set goals for yourself. 

Set short and long term goals. Set as many as you want ... and then prioritize them. Which ones can you do NOW? Which ones need to wait a little bit? Which ones will take you longer? Which ones do you need someone else to help you with them?

I write my goals out for the entire calendar year. Then I identify ones I want to achieve in each month. And then I write daily, ones that I want to do today to remind me of their importance. Nothing super fancy, I write in my notebook.

Here's a peek at some of mine:

* what's left of this summer 👉family pictures; finish overhauling the hall closet; paint the pantry; hang wallpaper in our 1st floor hallway

* upcoming school year 👉adjust to the shift in my role with the opening of a new building; publicize the Staff Help hub; create a better parent resource

* for my blog 👉try to publish once per week; work on improvements; get back to sharing on my TYCD: Resources

* for my joint ventures  👉work faithfully at sharing out

* physically  👉 keep up with running; regularly strength train; work on core strength

* family life  👉stay conscious of time and needs; be supportive; eat healthier ... minimize eating out; BE there

I hope that you set - and achieve! - the goals you set for yourself. Goals can always be adjusted, never beat yourself up over not achieving them. Heck, 2 weeks ago, I finished painting the cabinet in my daughter's bathroom that I had planned on getting done over Christmas break! But I don't give up. It might take me longer than I had planned, but I'll do it.

That's my ultimate goal - do what I set out to do, and do it to the best of my ability.

Next week, I'll return and share the learning adventures I've done this summer. I'll also share some exciting new adventures I'm taking on!!!