Great question! First off, if you think I am going to take credit for being "up-to-date" on Google or anything else for that matter, or that I have some sort of magic crystal ball that lets me see things before anyone else, you're sadly mistaken. Don't get me wrong, I'm quite flattered, but there are lots of people who know lots more about this stuff than I do. I've always said, "Good teachers are great thieves." Well, I may not be in a classroom, but I still practice a little petty larceny when it comes to tech info and updates. 😉
But I was just getting used to that...!One of the amazing things about Google is their responsiveness to teacher input. When you click the little ❓
- Now, to be clear: I work in a Google for Education/GSuite school district. Do other product/service vendors, etc., have someone read & respond to user feedback as well? Perhaps. I really don't know. This is not intended to slight others - This is simply a response to a question I received specific to Google tools.
Innovate or die.Teachers are really busy, but they understand the importance of remaining as up-to-date as possible on things related to their classroom pedagogy and content area(-s). It's hard just keeping up with current events related to their subject matter, much less with technology trends. So, often they prioritize their time by keeping up on the latest classroom management trends or advances in their content area instead. In other words, they tend to err on the side of keeping up with the kids' behaviors and questions, while gadgets and interwebs take a back seat.
So, how can we keep up?I am happy to share with you how I keep up. Maybe some of these ideas will work for you. Maybe you have better ideas than mine. Please feel free to share!
I have turned into a total Google-icious fanboy over the past couple of years. I do love many of Google's own resources, like
- Google's Keyword blog,
- GSuite on Twitter,
- Google for Education on Twitter, and
- several of Google's YouTube channels, like
- Google, GSuite (formerly GoogleApps), Google for Education and their new EDU in 90 web show, and others
- And, I just learned about a new resource called What's New In GSuite, which offers a searchable database of updates to a variety of Google-icious tools! (Credit goes to Google's Anne Nash for that nifty tip!)
- I use the Google app on my Pixel XL Phone by Google several times a day to get the latest on all things Googley, from sources including Chrome Unboxed, Android Authority, The Verge, and others.
- Podcasts, I believe, are making a quiet comeback these days. I have a daily 45-minute work commute each direction, so I use Google Play Podcasts and an app called Pocket Casts to stay up-to-date on the latest from:
- The Google Teacher Tribe, with Matt Miller and Kasey Bell
- The House of EdTech, by Chris Nesi, and
- The Chromebook Classroom, by John Sowash
- So, I'm kind of old-school. While I do use some social media platforms, I mainly read blogs or get digest updates in my email from blogs like:
- Free Tech for Teachers, and Practical Ed Tech, by Richard Byrne
- Ditch That Textbook, by Matt Miller
- Shake Up Learning, by Kasey Bell
- Control Alt Achieve, by Eric Curts
- Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day, by Larry Ferlazzo
- And, of course, I follow a lot of fellow edu-nerds on Twitter, like
- Maybe your commute is shorter than mine, but you spend 45 minutes a day at the gym. (Bless you - You're amazing!) Before cranking up your workout playlist in your headphones, maybe you'll get #superexcited during your workout by listening to the Google Teacher Tribe this week.
- Postpone streaming one episode during your next binge-fest for a quick EDU in 90 fix.
- If Twitter moves too fast for you, try one weekly email from Practical Ed Tech.