Chrome Extension Recommendation…

A small backstory… there was once a tool for leaving voice comments in Google Docs which I loved. But, tragically, they decided to pull their integration to be a separate service where you would need to go into their dashboard, sync your students’ Google Docs and then be able to leave voice comments. I wasn’t pleased with the extra clicks/steps involved and so, sadly, whenever asked about the ability to leave voice comments inside a Google Doc, I would have to tell my teachers that there was no easy way.

That was until today…

When this newly found extension is installed on your Chrome account, it will convert the url to an audio action button and play the recording (example images below).

  •  How the audio URL appears in this blog post when the extension is installed.

  • How the audio URL appears in a Google Doc comment when the extension is installed.

  • How the audio URL appears in a Google Classroom private comment when the extension is installed.

This works in comments for a Google Doc, Slides, Google Classroom, Twitter, Facebook, and many more… So you are probably asking, what is this magical tool (drum roll please) Talk&Comment (website | extension). The video tutorial below highlights how easy it is to use and how useful it will be for you and your students!

Catch-up Week… #EdublogsClub

This post is part of the #EdublogsClub – a group of educators and educational technology enthusiasts that blog around a common theme each week. Simply write a post and share it (via social media w/ #edublogsclub or posting a link as a comment to that topic’s posting on the Edublogger site) to join in, or sign up to receive email reminders of each new prompt. This is the 20th prompt in the series (if you’re counting at home, I skipped #15-19 because I couldn’t authentically write a post about the topic at the time) To catch-up I’m going to combine the 16th & 19th prompts into one post.

Prompt 16

Prompt: Write a post that tells a story.

  • Tell a story about a time in your career as an educator that you want to share. It can be a positive memory, a time you wish you could change the outcome, a student you remember, or just a class lesson you want to share.
Prompt 19

Prompt: Write a post about social media.

Here are some possible topics to help get you started:

  • Do you use social media to share with parents or your school community?
  • How have you used social media in the classroom with students?
  • How do you use social media to make you a better teacher?
  • Do you have guidelines that you use with students?
  • Have you experienced a story related to the use of social media?
  • What do you think is next for the use of social media in education?

Back in the beginning of April, I accepted a position (part-time) w/ ThingLink as their Education Social Media Specialist. This, in a way, explains, partially, why there haven’t been as many posts on here lately. I have a variety of responsibilities with this new position:

  • I maintain the @ThingLink_EDU Twitter account where I tweet out various content related tweets and engage with our education followers
  • I discover & author a weekly post on the ThingLink Blog for Education highlighting an ‘Image of the Week’
  • Establish a presence on Google+ (coming soon)
  • Other tasks which might come up like potential video tutorials

I have been using Hootsuite to help maintain and schedule tweets for the account. One feature which is crucial to my engaging with educators is by creating multiple tabs on the dashboard showing ‘Mentions’, ‘Searched Keywords’, & ‘Lists’. It is exciting to engage with educators around the globe in a different way, it’s almost like switching hats going from my personal account to the ThingLink_EDU account. I have gained inspiration and ideas from seeing how other educators are incorporating ThingLink.

Sign-up for Engaging Summer PD

In less than two months, I’ll be participating in the 4th Annual ThingLink Summer Teacher Challenge. Over the past four summers, I’ve learned various ways to incorporate ThingLink into my instructional approaches, been amazed at what fellow educators around the world have designed, and created some interactive images & videos as a means to showcase content.

This summer will be better than ever because it will leverage the power of ThingLink Premium tools and explore the vast possibilities of teaching and learning with 360/VR. As the stereotypical infomercials of past, “I’m not only a participant, I’m also a facilitator;” because I will manage one of the activities where participants will build their own 360° ThingLink Breakout!

This highly popular, self-paced professional development provides educators with the tools & support needed to create engaging, interactive 360/VR lessons & projects. To encourage educators to participate in this fantastic summer of learning, ThingLink is offering an incredible deal on a Premium Teacher account (remember, one teacher account comes with 200 student accounts)!

Get ThingLink Premium Teacher for Only $25

For a limited time, they’re offering participants a chance to grab a 1-year Premium Teacher subscription for just $25.00 (normally $120). A Premium Teacher account provides access to the following:

  • Teleport Editor App with our preloaded library of stunning 360° images to create lessons & student projects on an iPad, Android tablet, and recent Chromebook models.
  • ThingLink 360° image editor to create 360° learning experiences on any laptop or desktop computer.
  • ThingLink regular image editor, with customization and presentation features, plus preloaded icons for education.
  • ThingLink video editor to create interactive video lessons and tutorials.


Please share the news with your colleagues & join hundreds of educators, like me, from locations around the world in the ThingLink Teacher Summer Challenge starting in June!

Use code SUMMER17 to grab a ThingLink Teacher Premium account. Already have a Premium account? Simply sign up below to participate.

Give It Away Now!… #EdublogsClub

This post is part of the #EdublogsClub – a group of educators and educational technology enthusiasts that blog around a common theme each week. Simply write a post and share it (via social media w/ #edublogsclub or posting a link as a comment to that topic’s posting on the Edublogger site) to join in, or sign up to receive email reminders of each new prompt. 

Prompt: Write a post that includes a “giveaway,” whether that is a lesson, a PDF, or something else. 

Just make sure it is something you’ve created (preferably) or something you have the copyrights to share.

Some ideas to get you started:

  • Write a post about the importance of sharing ideas to create better student outcomes for everyone.
  • Discuss times when you felt you did not want to share your ideas and why “giving away” this one is important.
  • Share a time someone used an idea without permission and why plagiarism in the real world matters.
  • What value do ideas have and why does giving them credit matter?

I try to share everything I post on here so if it may help someone else, then they can use it. Recently, I have been creating activities using ThingLink’s VR/360° editor. They are Breakout Edu styled activities. The beginning of the month, I was contacted asking if there was a way to get a ‘teacher guide’ version of my planning docs.

Sure! In fact, let me add an item to my ThingLinks for others…

Now when an educator reaches out, I share a ‘view only’ version of the planning doc for educators that has the combinations as well as where the clue is to solve that lock.

What have you shared lately? I would like to read about it in the comments below.

Become a World Literacy Foundation Youth Ambassador

The World Literacy Foundation is inviting classrooms, peers, and groups to join the 2017 Youth Ambassador Program in a global movement to eradicate illiteracy. This provides a perfect opportunity for students and advocates to lead their wider community to make a difference in the world. Contact for more information or check out their Youth Ambassador page to apply. Applications close on May 31st By applying, “You will be a part of a network of like-minded young individuals who are passionate about equality, justice, and literacy.

  • Youth Ambassador: Julia Robbins, 17, Arizona


About the Author

The World Literacy Foundation (WLF) is a global not-for-profit organization that advocates for better education standards. WLF wants to ensure all children have the opportunity to acquire literacy and reading skills to reach their potential, succeed at school and beyond.

Digital Breakout Created Utilizing ThingLink’s New App… Teleport 360 Editor

I have been facilitating a Teacher Challenge during the month of March where educators were able to sign up to receive the features of a Premium ThingLink account so they have access to the VR/360° image editor. They could then design a digital Breakout EDU activity. Below is the one I created called: PD Day Breakout. Have fun & good luck!

Teleport 360 Editor (iOS or Android)

20170330-183332.jpgI beta tested the app which released today! It provides users, who sign in with their premium account two options: create your VR/360° ThingLink by uploading your own image to the app or select an image from their gallery of high quality, 360° images (check out the sampling of screenshots I took in the Gallery below). The tagging process mimics the web browser version for desktops, laptops, Chromebooks, etc and was very easy to navigate. Add images, videos, audio, embed anything with an embed code or create transitions (links to other VR/360° ThingLinks). This app will now allow teachers and students to become creators of immersive, interactive content. Check out their press release or find out more on the ThingLink Support page.

  • Washington D.C., USA

  • Sydney, Australia

  • Dublin, Ireland

I would love any feedback on the above ThingLink VR/360° Breakout, were you stuck anywhere? Have you downloaded and tried the app? I would love to read about your experiences with it in the comments below.