1 Thing Wednesday: FINALLY Easy Quizzes with Google Forms!

The day has come, my fellow educators, that we can easily make quizzes and tests using Google Forms.

Previously, you would have to use a Google Apps script such as Flubaroo to work within the response section of Google Forms to allow you to create a key, and match that against student form responses and easily send you data.  While it took a moment to set the script up for use in the form, once you got it going, it was such a time saver!

Even though my classroom had a pretty nifty District-provided in-class student response system named iRespond, I found that my middle schoolers’ motivation was enhanced by the fact that they could receive their quiz grades via email.  This way, they could have record of their grade before I input it in the online grade book.  For this, and many other reasons, I had my students use many a Google Form quiz in my last couple of years in the classroom (SY 2013-2014 and SY 2014-2015).  I would check out one of our school’s iPad carts or allow students to use their cell phones to respond to the questions.

Now, you can turn any form into a quiz right within the editing screen of Google Forms.

It’s about time! 🙂  Honestly, I am just glad to see an easier-to-use quiz maker and grader to make data collection and grading simpler for educators everywhere.

Test Google Forms Quiz

Test Google Forms Quiz Settings

By the way, I would like to give a special shout out to Tech Times and EdSurge whose sites brought this new and exciting information (and more!) to my attention.

*”The New Google Forms” featured image courtesy of Google via this link here.

1 Thing Wednesday: Podcasts

Has there been any one thing you have come across recently that has gotten your brain bubbling with excitement?  Recently I’ve been having fun geeking out on…

PODCASTS

(…and there are so many good ones!)

Freakonomics RadioTGIM LogoSchool of GreatnessTim Ferriss Show

Podcasts, short for “portable, on-demand broadcasts,” which can come in video or audio form, have been in existence for some time now (learn more about the history of podcasts here).  Podcasts are typically produced as episodes in a series, and are published on a regular basis.  They allow for you to get information such as news, listen to interviews, or be entertained on your schedule.  Personally, I tend to listen while at work, cooking dinner at home, or even when I am exercising.  Podcasts actually keep me more motivated on a run around the neighborhood than a music playlist would.  During those times I have been able to learn more about a variety of subjects directly or loosely related to my work in education ranging from recent research on supporting student literacy, to information about social media marketing, news about the world, and even nutrition.

Below are some of my favorite podcasts that I just cannot miss each week.

  • Freakonomics Radio: As an off-chute of the empire built upon the Freakonomics books by Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt, this podcast features Dubner exploring the “riddles of everyday life, and the weird wrinkles of human nature” each week.  The stories are insightful, well-researched, and engaging.
  • TGIM by Shopify: This podcast, produced by Shopify, is beautifully produced and worth listening to for that reason alone.  It presents short vignettes and stories to illustrate a general strategy to help entrepreneurs enhance their businesses.  Though I am not an entrepreneur, I find that much of the advice I have encountered for entrepreneurs is very applicable for educators as well.
  • The School of Greatness with Lewis Howes: Created by a former professional Arena Football player who has since re-branded himself as a motivational speaker, author, and entrepreneur, this podcast features uplifting interviews with leaders in various industries.
  • The Tim Ferriss Show:  Sometimes called “The Human Guinea Pig,” Tim Ferriss has taken the same approach he used in creating books such as The Four Hour WorkweekThe Four Hour Body, and The Four Hour Body to deconstruct world-class performers, athletes, and business people.  Each episode presents a deep conversation that always has me hooked.

While most podcasts producers have a website hosting them, they are much easier to consume when you use a program/app such as iTunes, Stitcher, or SoundCloud.  (Stitcher is my personal favorite, because I’m an Android phone girl, myself, and Stitcher is available across platforms–iOS and Android.)

This summer, as you find yourself kicking back at the pool, or running around the block, check out a podcast or two.  Next, tell me what you think of my recommendations comments below.  Do you have any others you think I would like too?

Until next time,

Ms. W.