21. Guides in Google Drawings

When moving an element in Google Drawings, you will find that faint coloured lines appear to help you centre, equally space and align your elements with other items in the Drawing.

As designers and creators, it is sometimes easier to create your own guides on the canvas but you do not want them to appear when you publish.  This is where guides come in handy!

Add your own guide lines to your Google Drawing from the View menu!

20. Hyperlinks in Google Docs and Slides

Hyperlinks in Google Docs and Google Slides can be used more than just sending people to a website; they can be used to link to other sections inside the Doc or Slide itself!  This is super helpful when creating a reference guide or a choose your own adventure activity. Here is how to do it on both platforms:

Google Docs

To link a section of a Google Doc through a hyperlink, the ‘location’ that the link will send the reader to must be created with a header format.  All of your header formats can be found in your toolbar under “Normal Text.”

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Once you have text that is in the header format, go back to the portion of the document that you want to place the link.  Highlight the text and right-click to select ‘link.’ Pro Tip: The keyboard shortcut is CMD + K for Mac or CRTL + K for all other devices.

Instead of pasting your link, you want to click on the drop-down beside ‘Headers.’  Select the header you would like to link and click Apply.

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Google Slides

Similar, but a bit easier than Google Docs, Google Slides allows you to use text (or objects) to link to other slides within your slide deck.

Just like you were linking text to an external webpage, highlight the text and right-click to select ‘Link.’  This time, you are going to select ‘Slides in this Presentation.’

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Now, not only can your Google Docs and Slides contain lots of information, but that information can be accessed and referenced easily.

Happy Creating!


19. Audio Notes in Google Keep

Last weekend I had the opportunity to attend the #ECOOCamp in Owen Sound and co-run a surprise session with Jen Apgar.  Throughout this pop-up session, we shared tips and tricks relating to using GSuite in the classroom.  We started talking about Google Keep and the amazing accessibility features included it the small, but mighty app!

In Google Keep you are able to take a voice note, this is helpful to record sound that is happening around you but it is also a quick way to write reminders.  Google Keep takes it one step further though.

Each time you create an audio recording in Google Keep it will automatically transcribe what you are saying into text in the Keep note itself.  Talk about voice-typing! Merge this with the power of opening Google Keep inside of a Google Doc and you’ve got two tools that make creating content easy.

So how do you do this?

1) Download the Google Keep App on your Phone

2) Open the app and click the microphone where you create a new note.

3) Say something.

4) Once it is quiet, the microphone disappears and your voice note is not in your Keep note and it has been transcribed.  You can still add an image, additional text and reminders to this note.

5) Ninja Trick – now go to any Google Doc.  Under “Tools” then “Keep Notepad.”  All of your keep notes now appear on the right-hand side. Drag the keep note to add the text t your Doc.

18. Pictures to Google Drive

Do you take pictures of work and students on your personal device?  Would you love a way to store them directly to your Google Drive?  Look no further than the Google Drive App!

Using the Google Drive App on Android or iOS, click on the plus (+) button.  Select the icon with the camera and take the image.  If you are happy with the image, click the checkmark and it will be uploaded to Google Drive.

Note: Android devices will always save as a PDF and iOS devices will always save as .jpegs.

One last thing to note is that whichever folder you are in in the app will be where your image saves.  Make sure you are in the correct folder or in the Main Folder of your Drive.

17. Table Formatter

Large tables are often hard to read so many creators place rows in alternate colours.  In Google Docs, this requires the user to highlight each row and change the table properties.

The Google Docs Add-On Table Formatter, allows users to format tables with colours both as borders and cell backgrounds in a couple clicks.

First, go ahead and add-on Table Formatter and open the add-on.  Once it has opened, you have tons of colour options to choose from – just click on the colour that you want.

Table Formatter

Don’t see one that you like?  Click on ‘customize’ up at the top and save your own colour scheme.

16. Session Buddy

If you are like me, you often open the same tabs to complete tasks daily or weekly.  It is sometimes a pain to search through your drive each time to find the webpages to open.  Not only is it repetitive, but it takes away your time from working with students.

Screenshot 2018-04-10 at 7.29.24 PMSession Buddy is a Google Chrome extension that allows you to save ‘sessions’ and open them with one click!  Add the extension and then click on the extension icon.  This will open up the Session Buddy interface and allow you to save your open windows for use later.  Clicking the ‘x’ for each tab, you can remove tabs you do not want to save.

Session Buddy always works well for history – you can review tabs open from ‘recent’ instances of Chrome.  Always there to make sure you have all the tabs you need.

It should be noted that Session Buddy is not cloudbased, so it does not sync between devices – a definite wish of mine.



15. YouTube in Docs

Shout out to Josh Harris for sharing this with me today!  Here is a link to the original tweet.

We all love our Google Docs, except when it comes to working with Docs and YouTube videos.  When we click a link, we get another tab open which opens up possibilities for distractions.

DocuTube is a new add-on in Google Docs that does just that – allows YouTube videos to open in the same window.

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Add this onto your Docs by clicking on ‘add-ons’ in the top menu bar and selecting ‘get add-ons.’  Search ‘DocuTube’ and click the FREE button.  Select the account you are using and OK the permissions.

Add in a YouTube link to your Google Doc and find DocuTube in the add-on menu.  Select if you want a pop-out (a larger screen in front of your Google Doc) or a sidebar (which will allow you to still use the Doc as you watch the video!).

Can you say #Hyperdocs integration as well as some awesome differentiated lessons?!  Can’t wait to see how you use DocuTube!

14. Unread Count Icon

When working with pinned tabs in Chrome, you do not get the text to let you know how many unread emails you have in gmail.  You could be receiving new emails and not noticing!

The lab “Unread Message Icon” allows you to see a count of unread email without opening your gmail tab!  You can find this by going to the Gear in the top right-hand side of gmail, selecting Settings and then Labs.  Search “unread message icon” and turn it on!  Don’t forget to save (the button is at the bottom of your screen).

Now you can always stay up-to-date on your unread messages!

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13. Right-Side Hangout Chat

Want to see more of your labels in gmail but your Hangout Chat is always in the way?  Would you like to see more of your hangout chats but your labels are in the way?  Look no further than “Right-Side Chat” lab in gmail.

To find it, go to the Gear button in the top right-hand corner of gmail.  Select “Settings” and then “Labs” from the menu at the top.  Search “right-side chat” and enable it.  Remember to click the save button!

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12. Paste without Formatting

Ever copy and paste text from a webpage and get all sorts of funky formatting?  Maybe you paste text and it looks something like this with large spacing, even larger font, bullet points indented further than normal and hyperlinks throughout.

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Sometimes, you just want to paste the text and nothing else.  Look not further than your keyboard to help you with this.

Instead of typing “CTRL” and “V”, hold “SHIFT” as well (so CTRL + SHIFT + V).  This will paste just your text and no formatting!

What is even better?  The text pasted will match the formatting that your document is currently in.  If you are using purple, script-type font, holding SHIFT while you paste will ensure that all text pasted will also be in the same purple, script-type font.