TGIF ~ December 11, 2009

Technology Gems, Ideas, and Facts

Friday, December 11, 2009

Just a note before you start reading… I spent Wednesday and Thursday of this week at the Google Teacher Academy in Washington, DC. To say it was fast-paced would be an understatement. My head is still spinning! I learned a lot, but more importantly I met a lot of really amazing teachers from around the country. Since I haven’t really had time to “debrief” and think about much else yet, you’ll notice a decidedly “Google” slant to today’s TGIF…

Gem ~ a website or application that might work well for you or your students

Need to do a quick calculation or unit conversion? Use the Google search box. Simply type in an equation – right where you’d type in a topic you were searching for – and hit “Search”. Google does the calculation for you. (Use the * to show multiplication.) Want to know how cold this morning’s 20 degrees F is in Celcius? Type in “20 degrees F in C” and see what you get. Very handy tools… right at your fingertips.

Idea ~ a way to enhance your LFS lessons with technology

Picture 4We’re all familiar with graphic organizers. Google has a word map concept built into its search. After searching for a term, click on “Show Options” then look for “Wonder Wheel”. A word map will appear, offering suggested topics about that term. Students can click on those topics, narrowing down to what they’re really looking for. The search results on the right side of the window change to reflect the refined search.

Fact ~ just a bit of information

I’m always intrigued by the way Google changes its logo to recognize special events or holidays. You can find an archive of all the special logos here. Have your students look up the logo for a particular date and discuss its significance. You’ll also find many logos that don’t appear on our search page here in the US, as they recognize holidays and events in other countries. The logo shown below was displayed in Vietnam on November 20, 2009 in honor of their National Teacher’s Day. (

Picture 5

Have a great weekend!



One thought on “TGIF ~ December 11, 2009

  1. Beth Bard December 13, 2009 / 7:18 am


    What incredible information you must have learned! I’ll be anxious to read more about the Google tools you were shown. The possibilities seem endless.



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