Holiday Writing Activity

Are you interested in something different that will add a little life to your student’s writing?

Whether your students are writing a story,  a poem or lyrics to a song have them jazz it up by making the text twinkle like Christmas lights. This activity is suited for students (and teachers) familiar with Google Docs and Google Slides.  It’s sure to capture their attention all the while encouraging students to write.  Check out my example of Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

Students begin by writing their story or poem in a Google Doc and add the Rainbow Maker add-on for changing the text color.  They’ll use Google Slides for creating the animated story.


Interested?
Scroll to Activity #6 from the link titled
Template and Activity courtesy of Eric Curts, Google Expert
Other activities include Emoji Rebus Stories, Pixel Art Ornaments, Holiday Greeting Cards, Magnetic Poetry, and Build a Snowman.

Memes With a Purpose

Have you ever thought about using memes as a fun and creative tool in education?

Memes are everywhere… in educational games, social media, and in advertising.  Most often, memes portrait a sense of humor that fits right in line with the image chosen.  Memes are pictures with text imposed to relay a message. Examples of how you could have your students create memes with a purpose are:

  • quote a person in history
  • define a vocabulary word
  • explain a science fact
  • prove a math concept
  • redesign a book cover
  • create a word wall
  • tie it into a QR code activity

Memes can be made in many ways such as with Word and Google Docs/Drawings or you can use websites like imgflip.com or memegenerator.net.  Having students create their own memes allows them to show what they have learned and how they chose to communicate their ideas.

 

Story Speaker With Google Home

Encourage students to write a story in a Google Doc that includes twists and turns for an exciting story. Stories lead down one path or another where outcomes vary based on prompts you write in your story. Story Speaker lets anyone create talking, interactive stories with no coding required. You just write your story in a Google Doc with a basic template, add your directives for making it interactive, then play your story with Google Home.

If you have a Google Home device, you will want to add the Story Speaker extension! Storytelling has never been more fun.  Watch this short video to see how easy it is to use Story Speaker.

SMMRY for Summarization

SMMRY is a bookmark widget you drag and drop to your bookmarks bar from  http://smmry.com/bookmark. This tool will be ready to use on any website you visit. It’s that simple.

Go ahead, test it out. It’s real easy to use.

  • Visit a website with an article to read.
  • Click the SMMRY bookmark widget called One-Click Summary in the bookmarks bar.
  • By default, you’ll get the abridged version of the article with 7 sentences.

smmry for summarization

For more or fewer sentences, enter a new number in the sentence summary box at the top of the page.

Additionally, you can click the “Settings” button at the bottom to make adjustments such as excluding questions, exclamations, and quotations.

 

Tour Builder With Google

Did you know that Tour Builder is not simply a tool for geography or map skills? Tour Builder can be used cross-curricular. It’s a free tool created by Google.

With Tour Builder, you can create virtual tours or tell a story on a map that includes locations, images, videos, descriptive narratives, and hyperlinks. These tours can be the retelling the events from a novel, tracing locations of a historical event, visiting different biomes or landforms around the world, showing animals and their habitats, visiting ancient cultures, or famous landmarks in history.

Tours can be viewed by others in Tour Builder, or take it a step further and import them into Google Earth for a full 3D experience!

Example Tours below (provided by Eric Curts).