What I’m Learning: How to talk like an Edu-Pirate

I like the code of the Edu-Pirates. I might just be one, in fact.

How To Be An Edu-Pirate | edbean

The Edu-Pirates Code

1. Students First: No matter what education policy requires or dictates, student learning comes first. It may be something as small as choosing to connect with students rather than immediately taking attendance or something as big as refusing to administer a harmful standardized test. To an Edu-Pirate student welfare and learning matter most and they will gladly suffer ‘the slings and arrows of annoyed administrators’ to honor that.

What I’m Learning: We were all Disconnected Nomads once…

I really like the diagram from this blog post. It seems to describe our progress from isolated to connected as learners quite well:


A Principal’s Reflections: The Limitations of Being a Disconnected Nomad

It seems like just yesterday that I was a disconnected nomad working hard to maintain the status quo and conform to a rigid system commonly known as education. You see, prior to 2009 I was adamantly opposed to even the thought of using social media for both personal and professional reasons. As a building level leader burdened by endless responsibilities, I could not fathom wasting even a precious minute in what I saw as a perpetual time sap. I swore that I would never be on any social media site and became disgusted when friends and family brought up the topic.  As a result I chastised my friends and made sure that the environment at my school was not only free of this stupid entity, but also other forms of distracting technologies that would interfere with student learning.  It was a powerful combination of perception and stigma related to social media that convinced me it was a product of the devil that could only bring about harm and misfortune. Thus I was convinced that there was absolutely no value in using social media in my life.

What I’m Learning: How to be a nerdfighter video creator

I love that this workshop exists. I want to make better videos, and I want to create them for a real purpose and audience. In other words I want to make authentic experiences with others.

The Nerdfighter Online Video Workshop – Hank’s Tumblr

There are three important ingredients to a good video…the writing, the performance, and the editing. Now, of course, lots of videos have those things blend together…sometimes I write while I film and sometimes while I edit (deciding to put stuff on screen or cut things (cutting is a huge part of writing) or even to go back and shoot something new.)

What I’m using: An App Script to grab all of the folder keys for your Google Drive

I think this could be really useful. Figuring out the folder keys easily means better distribution of google docs and assignments. Cool stuff.

Get Folders Google Spreadsheets App Script

One of my teachers was looking for a solution to pull the folder keys out of the folders created by Hapara so they could use them with other tools like Doctopus.  I imagine this could be helpful with Classroom and other tools as well. To make it as simple as possible, my team and I put together this sheet. Drop it in any root folder and run “Get Folders” from the menu and it will pull the name, folder key, and url for any subfolders.

What I’m Using: Tracking Gmail messages with Google Analytics to see who has read them.

I really like this hack a lot, especially because it works with all of the things I am already using. Also, it is 100% free.

How to Track Gmail Messages with Google Analytics

Google Analytics is often used for tracking visits to web pages and mobile apps but did you know that Google’s Analytics service can also be used for tracking your outgoing email messages in Gmail. You can add the Google Analytics tracking code to your Gmail messages and you’ll instantly know if your email message has been seen or opened by the recipient.

What I’m Using: LinkRedirector for sending folks to different link destinations based upon the device they are using.

Alright, so this might be a very specific use case, but I often need to send folks to different places if they are on an iPad vs. a Laptop. So, with this I can give folks the same link but take them to the different places I need them to go on the web based upon their device. I find that incredibly cool.

A free url shortener | Linkredirector

Send visitors to different destinations With our free url shortener you can add multiple destinations to your short links and define who should be redirected where. Simply select the segments you wish to affect, like device model, device vendor, operating system, browser, country, display size and returning/new visitors.

What I’m Using: A Chrome Extension to make Google Docs into WordPress Blog Posts

I find this extension to be awesome! I hope to use it a lot in collaborating on blog posts and in making things that I have written into an ongoing conversation.

Send to WordPress – Chrome Web Store

As a blog writer, you are most likely using Google Docs for most of your writing process. After hours of writing and reviewing, you finally have a completed blog post that you are ready to show the world. All that is left is to upload your document to WordPress. Unfortunately, this seemingly simple task often proves to be quite a hassle since you need to format the entire post in order to fit your blog’s style.

This extension is designed make your publishing process as fast and efficient as possible. Simply open your document with Google Docs to WordPress and click “create post(s)”. Your new post is now on WordPress, styled to fit your WordPress theme. Your images have also been taken care of, each one labeled correctly and appearing exactly in the right place

What I’m Learning: “Adding” files to multiple folders in the New Google Drive is Rediculous

Although you can still do this in the New Google Drive, the keystoke has changed to the nonsensical “Shift+Z” to open up the “add to” dialog. Thank goodness you can still hold down control (or Option on a mac) while you drag things from one folder to another in drive so you don’t mess with the permissions while you are adding it to your own folder structure. I know they are trying to simplify things, but I don’t think this is the right way of going about it.

About moving content from shared folders – Google Apps Administrator Help

Advanced users can add the file to ‘My Drive’ instead of moving it. This is not a copy of the file. It’s literally the same file located in multiple folders. For example, renaming the file in My Drive will rename it for everyone and sharing it will share the original file with anyone the added file is shared with. Users can do this by selecting a file and then pressing Shift+Z to display the “Add To” dialog box.


When Robots Start Taking Careers Instead Of Jobs, What Does Career Ready Mean?

Today’s podcast episode is about how challenging I found two videos about how robots, automation, and mechanization will take entire careers. I want to start thinking about what we can stop teaching based upon the idea that many of the careers we are preparing students for will not exist in 25 years.

Here are the two videos, so that you may become challenged and inspired as well:



When Robots Start Taking Careers Instead Of Jobs, What Does Career Ready Mean?

Project Roundtable: Passionate Learning, Creating and Collaborating in the New School Year

*Collaborative Planning Doc:* http://bit.ly/passionroundtable

*Roundtable Purpose:*
This roundtable is meant to help support teachers and leaders going back into their schools with a passionate approach to learning. It is meant to share best practices for the new school year and uncover collaboration points between teachers and schools.

*Roundtable Audience:*
This is for any teacher or leader going back to school after summer break (or that has continued to work and create throughout the summer). This is an opportunity for all of us to share the things we are most excited about in this school year, and to start thinking through where we hope to be by the end of the year.