Friday, December 5, 2008

I Love Google!!!!

I can remember the first time I ever saw and used Google. I called out to KK Cherney, our Media Specialist, for help in researching a new book for our Book of the Month program. She responded with, "Why don't you Google it?". After I looked at her like she was crazy she laughed and sat down to show me how to use Google as a search engine. WOW - my life online has never been the same! I've searched thousands of random ideas and topics over the years and peeked in on my childhood home from a satellite view on Google maps. I thought the possibilities were endless - now I know they are!

Last year I signed up for a Google account, developed this blog and began to really unlock the opportunities Google had to share. Google Reader has proved to be the perfect way for me to keep track of the more than 50 blogs being generated and updated by my faculty. I have also added professional blogs to the reader - some of which I found because they were recommended by Google. I absolutely flipped out the day it recommended my own blog as a Top Recommendation. :)

My leadership team has also started using Google Docs as a way to collaborate without all the back and forth email and paper for our weekly agendas. I even taught my faculty how to use Docs today in our Book of the Month faculty meeting so that all classrooms could contribute and benefit from each other's ideas for "going green". My latest discovery is iGoogle! It allows you to set up your own, very personal Google homepage with gadgets added that provide great ease in accessing many sites and web tools. There are so many ways to customize this page - down to picking a theme. My family is obsessed with seeing what the racoon family at the top of mine is doing!

I can hardly wait to discover the next new application in Google, I know I haven't even scratched the surface with all the possibilities. There's Google Earth, Google Chrome and sooooo much more. I encourage you to sign up for a free account and try it out - you'll be amazed at all the possibilites!



Jenny said...

I love Google, too! :) Last year, I made a shift in my personal and professional life and "iGoogled" my EVERYTHING. I have my classroom, professional, personal, daughters', and husband's agendas on my Google calendars (which I love, love, love). I've embedded my classroom calendar in my blog for parents to see, too. It's SO EASY for me to keep them updated on field trips, due dates, PTA functions, tests, etc. I also love Google Notebook - a great tool for jotting notes, collecting web resources, storing emails, and more. Coincidentally, this week I heard an NPR show on Google. The author of the new book, Planet Google, was speaking. It was quite enlightening. One word of caution I took from that show: everything we put on the internet (which is really just on THEIR servers) is now THEIR knowledge. Consider this. Be wary of storing any sensitive information there. There is also, in some expert's eyes, some concern regarding the concern for protection (or lack of) that Google has devoted to OUR stored information. As with everything, we must use caution.

T-Cubed said...

First, if you googled (excellent christmas party), you would find the fisrt listing as Ken and Lori's 2008! A million thanks. I loved everything, especially all of the pictures of me!

Second, how could we live without google? I just jumped on the GREEN google doc, and had a blast addding to the green ideas. Does that make me a google geek? If so, so be it!

Anyway, I have to go find a google source to share my party pictures, of me, with all of you :-}


T-Cubed P.S. a google is any number followed by 100 0s.

KK Cherney said...

Our journey never ceases to amaze me.
Let it continue.

The Lipsky Team said...

I'm pretty obsessed with google too but it's nothing compared to my students. There isn't really any knowledge they need that they can't find on google (it's how most of them look up unknown words that context clues can't explain.) What we're working on now is how to figure out when the information we find is true or totally made up!