What Motivates Students???

What motivates a student to create? Is it the topics or amount of pages assigned? What if the student wasn’t provided with writing objectives but instead shown how to create a digital flip book? Could this be a motivator in itself for creating the best written book?

Many moons ago I was the student who became motivated by the way an assignment was delivered. If it appeared like the focus was upon creating a design project to share with my classmates it caught my interest. Especially when told the projects would be used to help my peers learn about a topic I selected from the teacher’s list.

As an artist projects based upon design were very appealing to me. As a young student if creation appeared to be an important factor I went above and beyond to produce the best possible outcome. It seemed natural to start with research and learning as much as possible about a topic before designing.  I have observed even in today’s times when students are provided with a creative challenge they tend to “Step Up to the Plate”.

One thing to keep in mind the “Creative Challenge” must be fairly easy to achieve or this too may deter the student from success.  If technology is used pick out programs, APPS and devices familiar to the students. I understand sometimes a project may lean towards introducing new digital tools. If this is the case introduce the tools to the students and let them explore before setting them free to create the project.  The bottomline is to support students with becoming a “Motivated Learner.” Till this day I’m still a “Motivated Learner” one of the many desired skills in support of student’s futures.


Auto-Highlighting Text with Slides

A teacher in the help forums wanted to know how to automatically highlight vocabulary words in a presentation. This is easily done by inserting a shape, changing the transparency and adding animation. If you are looking to highlight each word as a student reads the presentation slide deck this is possible to do. It is a matter of setting the timing of the animation to appear after the prior or upon click.

STEPS for Auto-Highlighting

  1. Insert and Select Shape
  2. Choose the Rectangle
  3. Drag to Size Shape
  4. Click “Fill Color” Paint Bucket
  5. Select Yellow or color of choice
  6. Click “Fill Color” Again
  7. Select Custom
  8. Drag the Slider on the Right Downward
  9. Click Line Color, Select Transparent
  10. Click Shape, Select Insert
  11. Click Animate
  12. Select Animation Type
  13. Drag Speed Slider
  14. Click Play

3 Tips for Using Google Forms

As a Google Top Contributor I’m exposed to an abundance of questions from teachers throughout the world. The following tips lists was created due to answering these questions in the Google Drive, Docs and G Suite for Education Help Forums.

1. Sharing a Google Forms…

It always amazes each year hearing the following question. “What am I doing wrong the students are requesting access to the form?”

This happens when the teacher copies and pastes the Google Forms URL instead of using the Send button to share the forms. Please follow the below steps to send a Google Forms.


Forms Send by Send button

Choose Forms Send Method.gif

2. Collecting Student Names…

What if a student forgets to enter their name? Is there a way to tell who the form belongs to?

If names aren’t collected from within the form there is no way to find out who completed the form. However teachers can prevent this from happening by using one of the two following steps.

  • Auto Collect Student Emails

    • Set the Form to Auto collect email by using the settings tool

Forms Click Settings

Forms Collect Email Addresses

  • Add a required Name Field

    • Add a Short Answer Question Field to the Google Form
    • Type First Name Last Initial in the question area
    • Set the Short Answer Field to Required

Forms Required Name.gif

3. Changing Submission Message…

Is it possible to edit the message a student receives once a Google Forms is submitted?

Yes, the message may be edited to add a mindful message. Please follow the illustrated steps to customize the Google Forms Confirmation message.

Forms Click Settings

Forms Click Presentation

Forms Type Confirmation Message

If you have further Google related questions you’d like answered please leave them in the comment area of this post. I’d be happy to answer them.


Chrome Browser SAVES Student Work!

Imagine a student is working diligently on a research project and boom the Chrome Browser closes! It only takes one quick swipe in the wrong directions to loose all the open research tabs. Now the student is frustrated having to find and re-open all those pages again! Thanks to the Chrome Browser this is no longer a problem! Just right click the Chrome Tab and Select “Reopen Closed Tabs” and boom the research websites are back!

Re-open Closed Chrome Tabs.gif

Student Blogging Challenge Mentor…


Just received confirmation that I was accepted as a Blogging Mentor for the 2017 Student Blogging Challenge.  My first four students I’m mentoring are 10 years old and from Vietnam. This is my first time mentoring students in a global capacity. I’m looking forward to reading the students posts and helping them grow as a blog author. The very first blog post the students wrote was about their “Favorite Food.”

After reading their posts I realized this is going to be a learning experience for me as well as the children. It hit me by surprise to learn the students from Vietnam enjoy the same foods eaten here in America. I can’t wait to read more posts by these young students while helping them grow as both writers and creators. It’s inspirational to be part of  this group of educators who are using blogs to expand upon students writing, reading, and digital citizenship skills.