Two Powerful Google Drive Tools for Signing Your Docs and PDFs

March 4, 2015
There are several tools out there that claim to help users add electronic signature to their documents and PDFs but only a select few are really worth the try. We have been testing some of these tools and we have also checked different user reviews and came up with the titles below. We believe these are among the best Chrome tools teachers can use to electronically sign their documents. Both of these apps are integrated with Google Drive so you can work seamlessly on the files hosted there.

1- HelloSign

HelloSign allows you to easily sign your Drive documents online.”Choose any file in Google Drive and add your signature (or text, date, checkmark, etc.)  It’s that simple. You can sign and send any type of document (PDF, Word, Excel, etc.).” You can also use it to request signatures from others. You simply upload the document you want others to sign then assign the signature field and send off your request. When you integrate HelloSign with your Drive, you will get a special folder in your Drive for your signed documents and signature requests.

2- DocuSign

Similar to HelloSign, DocuSign also enables you to easily sign your documents and PDFs online. You can also use it to fill out forms and collect signature from others. “With just a few clicks, you can sign or send any document for signature right from Google Drive or Gmail. No printing, faxing, scanning, or overnighting required.”
Watch the video below to learn more about DocuSign

Some Very Good Chrome Tools to Annotate and Edit PDFs

March 4, 2015
PDFs (portable document formats) are probably the most popular document format we use in our daily work as teachers and educators. As such, we deemed it important that we share with you this list of  some interesting tools to help you  do more with your PDF files.  These Chrome apps will allow you to edit, annotate, convert, view, fill forms and share PDFs. Some of these add-ons (such as the first two in this list) are also integrated with Google Drive.

1- DocHub

DocHub is a tool that you can use to perform a variety of tasks on your PDFs and documents. It lets you sign, edit and share your PDFs and docs. You can also use it to fill forms, merge documents and create templates.

2- Notable PDF

This is another popular app that allows you to both view and annotate your PDFs. Annotating features offered by this add-on include:  highlighting, underlining, strikethrough, posting comments and notes, add text and many more.It can also help you collaborate, gather feedback, and work with other people in real-time.

3- PDF Compressor

PDF Compressor is a very handy tool when it comes to reducing the size of your large PDF files.”The files you upload and generate on the site are deleted permanently from the server within one hour after the upload. “

4- Merge PDF

This is a very good app to use for combining multiple PDFs. The process is pretty simple, you either upload or drag and drop your files to the app’s interface and the upload will start right away. Once uploaded you then preview your pages, change their order or even delete whole pages. When done click generate and the app will automatically download the merged files to your Drive.

5- Image to PDF Converter

As its name indicate, this add-on lets you easily convert your images into PDFs. It works with different image formats and you can upload either a single image or multiple images.

6- Word to PDF

Word to PDF is another app by the same developer as the previous one. This add-on enables you to easily convert your document files into PDFs.

A Handful of Good Chrome Tips for Teachers

March 3, 2015
Chrome is a powerful web browser to use for navigating the net. It is also popular among the education community as is evident from the huge interaction we receive each time we write about it. Chrome has a wide range of interesting features that make it ideal for educational uses. One of these features is third party extensions.There are some really useful educational extensions you and your students can use on Chrome to perform a number of things from saving numerous tabs in a single page to annotating and editing screenshots. Check out this page for some of our recommendations for Chrome educational extensions. You can also check Chrome Help section for more resources and guides on everything related to Chrome.

We are also sharing with you this list of video tutorials covering some handy tips on how to use different features on Chrome. Check them out below:

1- Translating web pages in Chrome

2- Using Chrome's Incognito mode

3- Using Chrome on different devices

4-Three tips for spotting malware

5- Chrome's settings, your way

6- Keeping Chrome updated

7- Clear cache and cookies in Google Chrome

A Wonderful Google Drive Tool to Insert Different Accents in Your Docs

March 3, 2015
Easy Accents is definitely a must have Google Docs add-on for students, teachers, educators and anyone else who write using different language formats. Easy  Accents enables you to easily insert accents for different languages directly into your Google Doc. The add-on supports a wide variety of accents that include: Esperanto Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Icelandic, Māori, Português, Sámi, Spanish to mention a few. And only recently Easy Accents added a new feature that lets you insert capital accents in your docs.

To start using Easy Accent, you need to install it from this page. After granting it permission to access your Google Docs, you simply click on “Add-ons” and select “Easy Accents” and then click the language you want to use. Accents of that language will be displayed on the sidebar of your Google doc from which you can directly insert them into your paper. Watch the video below, created by Greg Lawrence, to see this add-on in action.

Excellent Templates to Use with Newsletters, PowerPoint, and Word Documents

March 3, 2015
A few weeks ago, we shared with you two video tutorials to help you set up your classroom newsletter  and today we are introducing you to this excellent resource of templates to use not only for your newsletters but also for your PopwerPoint presentations, charts and diagrams, PowerPoint maps, Word templates, vector clip art, business cards, and brochure templates.

Powered  Templates is one of the most popular providers of professionally made templates that you can use for a variety of purposes. While some of these templates are not free, there are, however, over 40.000 free templates to choose from. The templates offered by Powered Template are arranged into different categories. Use the left hand bar to search for free templates in each category. To download any of the templates you will have to register with the site. Registration is free.

Here are some free template categories we picked out for you:

1- Free PowerPoint Templates
This section includes some of good free PowerPoint templates.

2- Word Templates
This section features free Word templates.

3- Print Designs
This one features  templates to use for creating brochures, posters, flyers, posters, business cards, and many more

4- Free Newsletter Templates
This page contains some interesting free templates to use for your newsletters.

7 Great Chrome Apps to Help Students Become Better Googlers

March 2, 2015
Here is what we have been working on over the last weekend. This is a list of some excellent Chrome tools to enhance your 'Googling' experience. From extensions allowing you to conduct a quick Google image search to add-ons that help you find what you are searching for in a  faster and easier way, the list comprises some of the best tools recommended by Google and other Third party developers. The purpose is to empower students with the necessary know-how to take their Google experience to the next level and also to enable them to become  digital savvy netizens.

1- Search by Image

This is a really wonderful tool that you can use to quickly find information about any image you come across online. Once the add-on is installed, you simply right click on any image and select “Search Google with this image” and you will be able to access results about  “that image, and similar images, appear on the web. You can see webpages that contain that image, or find the same image in different sizes or resolutions.”

2- Highlight to Search

This is an add-on that makes it super easy to search for information using any keyword in a web page. You simply highlight the word and a magnifying glass will be displayed under it. Clicking on it will enable you to search Google for that word.

3- Google Similar Pages

Students can use this tool to search for pages that talk about similar topics.When you click the Similar Pages button, your browser will send a search query to Google to see if there are any similar pages for the page you are viewing.

4- Google Quick Scroll

Google Quick Scroll is a browser extension that helps you find what you are searching for faster.After you click on a Google search result, Quick Scroll may appear on the bottom-right corner of the page, showing one or more bits of text from the page that are relevant to your query. Clicking on the text will take you to that part of the page.

5- Personal Blocklist

This add-on allows you to blocks domains/hosts from appearing in your Google search results.The personal blocklist extension will transmit to Google the patterns that you choose to block. When you choose to block or unblock a pattern, the extension will also transmit to Google the URL of the web page on which the blocked or unblocked search results are displayed.

6- Maps Galaxy

With MapsGalaxy, you can access FREE maps, quick directions, traffic reports and more -- all with one click.  Go anywhere with FREE maps and directions.

7- Google Dictionary

Google Dictionary is a must have app for all language learners. This app makes it super easy to view word definitions as you browse the web. Simply highlight or double click the word you want to define, and a pop-up bubble will be displayed with the complete definition of that term. I also allows you to store the history of words you have looked up so you can practice them later.

Professionally Designed Templates to Use in Google Docs and Sheets

March 2, 2015
Template Gallery is a useful Google Doc add-on for teachers and students. It provides you with a variety of professionally designed templates for your documents and spreadsheets. Most of these templates are not available in Google Drive’s public gallery. Examples of the templates provided by this add-on include: calendars, schedules, invoices, time sheets, budgeting tools, letters, resumes, financial calculators, and more.

To use Template Gallery, you need to install the extension from this page. Once installed you can then browse through the gallery.”When you find a template you want to use, click on the Copy to Google Drive button and the add-on will save a copy of the template into the root folder of your Google Drive.”