Monday, March 31, 2014

TwistedWave: Create & Edit Audio Online for Free and Save to Your Google Drive!

Many teachers (particularly in the elementary buildings) frequently ask about audio editing options to support their students adding audio (narration) to projects they have created. Now, there is a new option available that is free and that works on a Chromebook and on a PC: TwistedWave.

This application allows the user to create and edit audio recording and to save them in their Google Drive.

If you want to work with files longer than 30 seconds, you will need to create a free account to do so. The applications supports a number of editing tools and would likely fit the needs of many users!

It is FREE during beta testing according to the website. All bets are off after the beta period.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Scripts to Amp up the Power of Your Spreadsheets

Google Spreadsheets and Forms are powerful tools that allow you to collect data. Adding the power of Scripts to your spreadsheets will dramatically increase the power and functionality of your spreadsheets and allow you to do things like automatically grade, email and generate Google Docs and PDF files based on the data you collect! These are just a few of the things that scripts can do for you! Here’s a brief overview of some of the script tools and what they can do for you. Check with your building PD Committee Representative for upcoming PD on these and other script tools!


Flubaroo is a free tool that helps you quickly grade multiple-choice or fill-in-blank assignments.
More than just a grading tool, Flubaroo also:
  • Computes average assignment score.
  • Computes average score per question, and flags low-scoring questions.
  • Shows you a grade distribution graph.
  • Gives you the option to email each student their grade, and an answer key.
  • Lets you send individualized feedback to each student.


gClassFolders is a free, Google-Spreadsheet-based add-on for Google Apps for EDU that creates class folders for students and teachers to simplify and streamline their experience of using Google's world class productivity and collaboration tools in the classroom. Version 2 was released on 2/13/13 and contains the following new features:
  • Ability to run in "Single Teacher Mode" or "School Mode" - school mode anticipates use over multiple semesters and at the scale of many classrooms.
  • Ability to add students and classes over time without recreating all folders.
  • Bulk operations like "Remove from class", "Add teacher," "Add school aide," "Move to another class," and "Archive course"
  • Internationalized interface runs in over 70 languages via Google Translate API.
  • Plugs into gClassHub, a gallery of tools that allows any teacher running gClassFolders to instantly launch spreadsheets containing useful scripts like Doctopus, autoCrat progress reports, etc. PRE-POPULATED with their student roster and student assignment folder IDs!


The autoCrat script enables you to automate the creation of personalized documents and emails from the cloud. The script is a multi-purpose document merge tool that allows you to take any personalized, row-based spreadsheet data and create, save, attach to email, and share templated documents. The user first creates a template Google Doc. autoCrat can then populate the template document with data from a Google Spreadsheet.
  • Merge any spreadsheet or Google Form data into personalized, templated Google Docs or PDFs.
  • Create your template file as a Google Document or Spreadsheet using <<merge tags>>.
  • Easy-to-use field-mapper takes the hassle out of setting up merges.
  • Organizes merged files into a collection of your choosing.
  • Dynamically names Docs, organizes links in your spreadsheet to improve your workflow when accessing Docs later.
  • Enables sending of PDFs as email attachments.
  • Allows for setting of conditions to only merge Doc if a value matches a criteria.
  • Share merged Docs with recipient(s) as view-only or as editor.
  • Include merge data in document header and footer.
  • Great for form letters, progress reports, personalized student assignments, equipment invoices, transcripts, etc.


Doctopus is a Google Spreadsheet script developed by Andrew Stillman that can help teachers manage the flow of shared work in in their Google Drive accounts. It is one of the best ways to create assignments in bulk, while maintaining the same naming conventions and sharing them directly with students. The basic concept behind the script is to enable teachers to quickly share documents with all of the students on a roster, monitor usage of shared documents, and give students feedback within that roster spreadsheet.
  • Doctopus takes the class roster and it lets you designate groupings. 
  • You can have different starter documents per group, in the case of a jigsaw-style project.  They get copied, provisioned, shared with the right kids, and it takes thirty seconds.  And they're all sitting there in a folder, organized for you as the teacher. 
  • Doctopus even lets you distribute the documents into student dropboxes in Drive, so the student always knows where to find assignments.  You've got links to each of them, they show you the last edit time on the document. 
  • If there's a group that you notice is shopping for sneakers instead of doing the work, you could literally project it on your screen in the room.  
  • You have the ability to grade and offer feedback in the spreadsheet and then instantly send that feedback to students.  
  • You can strip away editing rights if you want to create a deadline. When you hand back the first draft, and you want students to resume their editing, you just give the editing rights back.
  • The most recent version of Doctopus now allows you to add a teacher's aide or a co-teacher, so that you can share the burdens of evaluating student work.  That's going to be great for teacher teams, or cross-grade level projects where you have multiple teachers that you want reviewing and jurying the same work. 
  • Doctopus is also good for individualized assignments.  It lets you do single-level, individual starter documents, or you can create different level starter documents for each student.