Highlights from the March Google for Education newsletter

Women in Culture

Here are some highlights from the latest newsletter for your consideration.

Two Great Google Updates

Easy Share Button

In the latest update for Chrome, you’ll now see a share icon in the link address bar. Click that “sharrow” and you be able to copy the link or get a QR code with a few less clicks.

image showing share icon in omnibar

Go Pageless in Google Docs

More and more teachers are going “paperless” in their classrooms. As a result, you might not like making formatting adjustments when an image, table, or something else falls right around a page break. Google Docs now gives you the option to “pageless.” View the video below to find out how and see why it might be helpful.

More information from Google on this update.


Highlights from the February Google for Education newsletter

Google for Education Feb

Here are some highlights from the latest newsletter for your consideration.

New Google Slides Option: Show/Remove Filmstrip

image showing to go to view and check or uncheck filmstrip

There is a new option for your screen when working in Google Slides. You can view or hide the filmstrip. What’s filmstrip? It is the vertical display of slides to the left of the slide your are working on.

image showing to go to view and check or uncheck filmstrip

Take a Look at the Difference

comparison of the 2 viewsWhy would you want to use this feature?

👉🏽 You are presenting, but still want to be able to edit on the slide, this gives you more space

👉🏽You have a drag and drop activity for students, you can utilize more of the gray area on the sides

👉🏽 You want to keep upcoming slides hidden

Interested in drag and drop activities for Google Slides? Check out these resources:

Winter and End-of-the-Semester Activity Ideas

As we approach the end of the semester, you might consider some new ideas for end-of-semester final projects. Matt Miller, the founder of Ditch that Textbook posted a few great ideas on his blog. Ideas include creating a series of podcast, producing an unboxing video, and connecting with a cause. Read more about his ideas here: https://ditchthattextbook.com/10-ideas-for-digital-end-of-semester-final-projects/

You many not be looking for end-of-the-semester activities, but perhaps you are looking for activities that will engage students as we move toward Winter Break. Eric Curts, of Control Alt Achieve, has put together a collection of “googley” wintertime activities that will allow students to be creative and practice some content skills. Check out his great templates here: https://www.controlaltachieve.com/2021/12/winter.html

Mobile Tips for Teachers and Students

Time Saving Tip: Many students and teachers end up accessing Google tools from their phones. As a result, most of us are logged into multiple Google accounts on our phones. Up until last week, I would click on my avatar in the upper, right corner and then select the account I wanted to switch to. But did you know you can save a few nano-seconds by just swiping up or down on that avatar and Google will switch between your accounts? This works in Google Mail (Gmail), Google Drive, Google Keep, Jamboard, Slides, and Docs. It works in most of the Google apps except for Calendar. Video Demonstration.


Add a page break before paragraphs in Google Docs

Add page break

You can now mark a paragraph to always begin on a new page with the new “Add page break before” option in Google Docs. This is particularly useful if you want certain paragraph styles to always create a new page such as titles, subtitles, or headings. This also means that you can import and export Microsoft Word and other third-party documents that have “Page break before” applied to paragraphs and Docs will retain that formatting.

Add the new
Add the new “Add page break before” paragraph style in Docs


Classic Sites to new Google Sites migration reminder

Classic sites to close

Starting December 1, 2021: owners and collaborators of classic Google sites will no longer be able to edit any remaining classic Google Sites in our domain. Starting January 1, 2022: classic Google Sites will no longer be viewable unless they are converted to new Google Sites. If you own a classic Google site in our domain and wish to have your content remain viewable after January 1st, at some point before the new year browse to https://sites.google.com/classicsitesmanager and initiate the conversion process.

In some cases we note there are some teacher sites that receive hundreds of views a month even though they haven’t been edited in a year or more, so will suggest you review your site’s stats before possibly deciding to skip converting it. For those with lots of page views on dated sites, if you decide to convert to permit continued visitor access, you may want to at least edit your site by adding links for visitors to follow to also access content you are now more involved in curating on Canvas or elsewhere.

Two of this month’s Google updates

Google Updates

Every month tweaks and changes occur in one or more of our Google apps. Here are two of this month’s.

Create meeting notes in Google Calendar. Available starting in late October, quickly start and share a meeting notes document for your Calendar events.


Add image watermarks in Google Docs. You can now add image watermarks directly into Google Docs.


Meet OrbitNote (formerly the Texthelp PDF Reader tool)

The TextHelp PDF Reader has officially been reborn as OrbitNote!

Earlier this summer, the Texthelp PDF Reader was updated and became OrbitNote. This update included a new look & easier onboarding. P-CCS students & staff have access to all the PREMIUM features of OrbitNote detailed below.

If you’re not familiar with it yet, OrbitNote allows staff & students to transform and interact with PDFs and digital documents in a completely different way. It helps to create an accessible, dynamic and collaborative space that works for everyone.

You & your students can use OrbitNote to:

      • -Collaborate in real-time within digital documents
      • -Read text, including math & science equations, aloud with easy-to-follow dual color highlighting
      • -Type text on top of your PDFs with the Text feature
      • -Highlight and extract information with colored highlighters
      • -Add text and voice comments or use pushpins for helpful hints or instructions
      • -Use freehand or shape drawing to scribble and draw on your digital documents
    And more!

There is NO ACTION required for students or staff who were already using the PDF Reader; the new OrbitNote extension auto-updated. Students and staff may have to update permissions with the first use of the new tool.

Staff who have not used the Texthelp PDF Reader in the past will need to install the extension here.

For more information about using OrbitNote, including Canvas LMS integration, go to the RW4G@PCCS website: https://bit.ly/PCCS-OrbitNote

The new OrbitNote Quick Reference Guide is available here.

Videos: https://text.help/orbitvids
Technical Support: https://support.texthelp.com

You might also want to check out this video of OrbitNotes used in Canvas and/or a comprehensive overview of many of TextHelp’s features:



OrbitDoc (now OrbitNotes) used in Canvas