We switched to Gmail!

First Things First

Staff, here is your starter to-do list now that you’re on Gmail so that you can get squared away for the start of the school year!

  • Create a mail signature
  • Enable the “Undo Send” option if you realize you made a mistake right after you hit “Send”
  • Set Desktop Notifications so you know when you get new e-mails
  • Create Labels (the new “folders”)
  • Set the Calendar Share Settings for people who you want to see your calendar
  • Set whether your calendar is visible to everyone in CUSDK8 or not

(See these videos for how-to’s)

Preview E-mails in Chrome Browser

If you are using Chrome for your browser, we recommend installing a Chrome extension called Checker Plus, that will allow you to easily see if you have any email and view it without opening a Gmail tab.

Preview Pane

Do you like having a Preview Pane where you can read the email and see a list of all your other emails on the side?  Enable the “lab” Preview Pane and set it up to look just* like it did on Outlook.

Setting up an iPad

There are a TON of apps, including the native Mail app. However, we have found that the best app is the Outlook Mail App (previously Acompli). You can sign into your Google account and it will allow you to easily view your mail, calendar, Google files, and more — in one app.

Get Help

Help Videos

For web based Gmail, we have created a playlist of videos showing you how to use Gmail and some specific preferences that will make your workflow easier: YouTube Playlist


If you use Chrome, you’ll notice in the top right corner a “Google” circle that when you place the cursor on top says” CUSD Google Help. This will give you short guided tutorials on how to do just about anything you are wishing to to. If you are in Gmail – it will give you Gmail tutorials, if you’re on Google Drive – it will give you Drive tutorials – it is smart like that! This a great quick reference and learning tool to become more comfortable!



Force “Make A Copy”

Force Copy is one of my favorite Google Tricks!

You use this with any Doc, Sheet, Drawing, or Presentation.  Start by creating the document (or sheet, or drawing, etc.) you want to share.  Set the sharing privileges so that anyone with the link can view.  Then head to the omnibox and change /edit to /copy.  Turn that url with the /copy into a tinyurl so it is easily accessible.  I recommend adding this extension to your chrome browser to quickly create tiny urls.

Happy copying.

Share That Calendar

Google Classroom and Google Calendar are finally friends!  Any assignments with a due date that you create in Classroom will automatically feed into Google Calendars.  You can now share this assignment calendar with parents, administration, or with other teachers at your site.  Reality is, you can share it with anyone!

Where is this calendar?  Go to your Classroom and select “About” then Select “Open in Google Calendar.”

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Google Calendar will open up in a new tab.  Find the calendar on the left side under “My Calendars” then select “Share this Calendar.”

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From there make sure you have the following boxes checked “Share this calendar with others” and “Make this calendar public.”

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Once the calendar is public you have a few choices about how to share the calendar.  You can grab a link and email it to your parent community.  Or you can use my favorite option and embed the calendar into your classroom Google Site.  Read more about how to share your public calendar here.

Happy sharing!

Classroom Keeps Getting Better!

Check out the newest updates on Google Classroom

  • More than one teacher per Classroom
  • Create Assignments and Announcements as drafts to post at a later time
  • Autosaved grades
  • Notification will be sent to teachers when a students leaves a private comment on any assignment

Want to get started with Google Classroom?  You can find the Cupertino Union School District Getting Started Presentation Here!

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Search Shortcut

One of my favorite keyboard shortcuts is Command and F.  This shortcut will bring up a search box right under the omnibox, and will search the current page you are on to find the term you specify.

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I use this feature all the time on our CUSD Vetted Apps and Website Spreadsheet to find out what category a certain tool falls into.  Check out this short video on how I searched our spreadsheet for the tool Kahoot.

Great news, is this is available on your iPad too!  If you want to search a specific term on a website (take our blog for example) head up to the omnibox in your iPad, and begin typing the terms you are searching for.  You will see a variety of options such as Wikipedia, Google Search, and On This Page.  Select “On This Page” and that terms will be highlighted for you!


Search Master – Part 4

In our final installment of our Search Master Series I would like to share with you what I call “omnibox awesomness.”  You can search for so many things right from the omnibox.  Check out our quick one minute video on how to use the omnibox to search for…

  • Earthquakes
  • Math
  • Graphs
  • Population statistics
  • Unemployment statistics
  • Sunrise and Sunset time
  • Current time in different cities
  • Money conversions
  • Definitions
  • Flip a coin or roll a die

You can also search for…

  • Stock prices
  • Movie times
  • Weather conditions
  • Flight status
  • Things to do in (insert city here)
  • (Type of food) (zip code)

Happy Searching!

Search Master – Part 2

Last week we talked about how to filter Google Images and some quick tips on how to find the right image you are looking for.  This week we will discuss various symbols you can use to filter your Google Search.

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  • ” ” will tell Google to search for that exact phrase.  Search “I have a dream” and Google will search for websites that only contain that phrase, as oppose to searching for the four individual words.
  • – will tell Google to remove a certain search result.  Searching for Eagles, but only want the bird?  Write Eagles -Philadelphia into the omnibox and Google will remove search results of the Philadelphia Eagles.
  • OR will tell Google to pull up search results for both terms you are searching for.  Search Barcelona OR Madrid for results on both locations.
  • .. will tell Google to pull results from that given range.  Searching for information on Princess Diana, but only need a specific time frame? Search Princess Diana 1982..1984
  • * will tell Google that the asterisks is a place holder for an unknown term.  Search “a * saved is a * earned” remember to use ” ” around your phrase.
  • site: will tell Google to search one specific site.  For example: Common Core site:nytimes.com will pull up articles from The New York Times about Common Core.
  • filetype: will tell Google to search for a specific file type.  You can search for PDFs, Word Docs, Presentations, etc.

Happy searching!