IT & ICT Tips for an Easy Teaching Life (1)

Tech Tips for Teachers

Technology has undoubtedly brought us a lot of interesting solutions to most of our teaching needs but at the same time, it has probably made it harder to be in control of what happens to and around us.

The main aim of these weekly posts is to give three quick tips (in each post) to teachers to make their tech teaching lives a bit easier to manage. You will find them practical especially if you have just decided to integrate technology into your teaching life.

Do you have to check a particular webpage regularly and want to reach it with just a click? Do your naughty or accidental YouTube searches appear on your YouTube homepage and you receive naughty video recommendations in your mailbox and don’t know how to get rid of them? Do you use WhatsApp to keep in touch with your students and you need it on your desktop to handle it easily and share docs from your computer? Read the following lines for some quick solutions:

  1. How to add a webpage to the task bar (or the Dock in a Mac) for easy access:

    • Internet Explorer on Windows

      • Open the tab!
      • Just drag and drop the tab to the task bar as you would do with any other softwares. it will be added to the task bar for your future easy access.
    • Chrome on Windows

      • Open the tab!
      • Click on the setting icon in the top right-hand corner of the page.
      • Click on ‘more tools’.
      • Click on ‘create application shortcuts’. [The tab can be added to the ‘desktop’, ‘start menu’ or the ‘task bar’]
      • Tick the box next to ‘Pin to task bar’.
      • Click on ‘create’.
      • Done!
    • Safari (or other explorers) on Macs

      • Open the page that you want to add to the Dock (=Mac version of the task bar).
      • Click the small icon (which is the website icon) on the left side of the URL and drag it from your browser’s address field to the Dock near the trash.
      • Remember you have to pin it near the trash as there is a Dock Separator there which doesn’t allow you to pin a tab between two apps. The Dock Separator is the line that appears near the Trash icon. The side of the Dock above or to the left of the separator is for applications. The side below or to the right is for URLs, files, and folders.
      • If these steps don’t work on your Mac OX, open your browser’s list of bookmarked URLs and drag the icon from there into the Dock.
  2. How to get rid of your YouTube watch and search history:

    • Log in to your Google Account.
    • Go to www.youtube.com
    • Click on ‘history’ in the left-side panel.
    • Click on ‘watch history’ or ‘search history’ in the main panel on top of the page.
    • Click on ‘clear all watch history’ or ‘clear all search history’.
    • Done! If you don’t want Google to keep track of watch you watch or search in the future, there is one more step to take!
    • Click on ‘stop watch history’ or ‘stop search history’.
    • Done for ever!
  3. How to get WhatsApp running on your laptop

    • Note: You can’t do this on Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge (at least at this time that I am writing this post) so use any other updated browsers you can find!
    • On your laptop go to http://web.whatsapp.com. You should be able to see a QR Code there.
    • Now open the app on your mobile device and do one of the following:
      • iOS: tap the Settings tab, then tap “WhatsApp Web”.
      • Android: tap the Menu button, then tap “WhatsApp Web”.
      • Windows Phone: tap the Menu button, then tap “WhatsApp Web”.
      • Blackberry 10: Swipe down from the top of the main screen and tap “WhatsApp Web”.
    • Your phone will open a screen with a camera window (so your phone must have a camera!)
    • Point your phone’s camera  to the QR Code on your laptop screen and centre the QR code.
    • Done! You’ll now see your contacts on your laptop.
    • Just under your profile photo you can see ‘get notified of new notifications’. Click on it and follow the instructions if you want to receive desktop notifications even when the tab is not the active one on your desktop.

Watch this space for the next posts if you found this one useful and comment on this post if you have any particular Learning Technologies/e-Learning issues or questions for the next-week post.

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