Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Some app substitutions for iPad apps to use on a Chromebook

Chromebooks - apps recommendations and substitutions

Many “apps” made for iOS and Android aren’t meant to be used as apps on a Chromebook, anymore than they would be on a Mac or Windows device. You can just use the website. Others have web apps and/or extensions.

  1. Google Maps web app
  2. Kindle - use website or Kindle Cloud Reader web app
  3. Stage - no direct alternative, but there are “whiteboarding apps”
  4. PS Express - Pixlr Editor or PicMonkey
  5. Dropbox - Dropbox Web App
  6. Educreations - (Lensoo) - go to Educreations website and login,
  7. Chatterpix - use Pixlr or PicMonkey (see #4)
  8. PhotoFun Animal - no direct alternative (doesn’t seem educational either)
  9. Wikipanion - just go to Wikipedia site
  10. QR Reader - use ScanQR
  11. Accelerated Reader (AR) - Renaissance Learning AR, Achieve3000 Mobile
  12. Adobe Reader - Acrobat Reader web app, Google Drive will also open PDF files
  13. Pages - use Google Docs
  14. Numbers - use Google Sheets
  15. Keynote - use Google Slides
  16. iMovie - use WeVideo
  17. iPhoto - use Pixlr or Pickmonkey (#4 above) for editing. Google Photos (part of Google Drive) can also be used to organize your photos and do basic editing.


Remember to add these through the Admin Console as pushed or recommended apps for your users.(Scroll down to Force-Installed Apps and Extensions)

Thursday, July 30, 2015

3D CAD and 3D Printing with Chromebooks

Everyone who reads this blog knows I'm a huge fan of Chromebooks, especially for education. One area that I get asked about often is 3D CAD and 3D Printing. So here is some info. I am by no means an expert on 3D printing though.

Tinkercad is a completely web-based, 3D CAD system that works on Chromebooks. I've used it and found it easy to use and pretty powerful (and I've used systems like CATIA, Pro-Engineer and SolidWorks). You can easily download the STL file to use with the 3D printer. Tinkercad also has some great resources to help you learn how to use it.

I haven't found a 3D printer that would work directly from a Chromebook, but even Windows laptop schools connect a powerful desktop to their 3D printer to do the rendering and printing and allow the student to use their device for other things while the job runs. Some printers even have built in support for accessing files from media devices like flash drives so you can print direct.

So, students can do their designs on the Chromebooks, and then the files can be accessed on the desktop PC and printed on the 3D printer.

Two more things Chromebooks can do!


What can you do on a Chromebook? Pretty much everything.

CK-12 Integrates Its Awesome Educational Resources With Google Classroom

CK-12, a great resource for free e-textbook and curricular resources, has just announced that it is integrating with Google Classroom. Google recently updated Classroom to allow third parties to integrate and share with Classroom and CK-12 has just done that.

The Google Classroom share button is now in CK-12 so teachers and students can access all of the content in CK-12 from within Google Classroom. A teacher can easily share any textbook, video, activity or assignment they find in CK-12 right into Classroom for their students to access.

Check out this video that shows how it works:



Monday, July 20, 2015

10 Free Tools for Back to School for Teachers

Astute Hoot, a site, run by educators, that has reading and math strategy animals and accompanying books, hands-on tools, lessons, and graphic organizers, has a free download that has 10 template and sample files for teachers to help them get the new school year started a little easier.

The FREE Top 10 Tools for Back to School includes the following sample files:

1. Beginning of the Year Checklist
2. Golden Keys to Success Responsibility Chart
3. Golden Keys to Success Parent Brochure
4. Routines, Procedures & Transitions: Walking in line
5. Icebreaker Activity: Top 10 About Me
6. Common Core Reading Strategies Poster
7. Behavior Reflection Think Sheet
8. First Day of School Lesson Plan
9. Social Story--Following Directions
10. Parent Welcome Letter sample

Take a look.


Welcome Back! Some great resources to get your school year started


Mozilla Foundation announces some new, free educational resources

The Mozilla Foundation is a global nonprofit that promotes openness, innovation and participation on the Internet. Their mission is to improve universal web literacy, or the ability to read, write and participate on the Web.

This summer, Mozilla is rolling out new, free tools and curriculum to help learners of all ages achieve web literacy.

Webmaker Beta is a free, open source Android app that allows smartphone users of any skill level to create original content online. Here is a blog post on Webmaker and you can download it here

Maker Party is Mozilla's annual global campaign to teach web literacy through hands-on learning. This year, from July 15 - 31, educators and students can use their curriculum and teach others how to read, write and participate online. Activities touch on privacy, HTML, collaboration and more. You can read more about it here.

It's very much a networked initiative: individuals and organizations (schools, libraries, etc.) can host and customize local Maker Parties. Visit the 2015 website for more information.

These are some great resources for schools to use to help teach web/digital literacy.

More resources:

10 Tech Skills Every Student Should Have

How to Evaluate Web Resources

Internet Safety Resources:



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