On Friday afternoon, when most teachers head home for the weekend, it’s already time to plan out the next week. Having spent the previous few days supporting our students and supporting our colleagues, we take the time to support ourselves. In just a few minutes before I leave for the day, I prepare items to help me have a smooth start on Monday. I’ve been using the latest Microsoft Edge enhancements at home to accomplish that for a while, but now that I have them at school through the Windows 10 Creators Update … I’m hooked!
These are the six Microsoft Edge features and updates I find especially useful for lesson planning and instructional support:
1. Set Aside Tabs
At the end of a school day, my brain is often swimming with all the activities that went well and those I want to extend. I typically spend time each day searching and organizing web resources to use in upcoming lessons, and I used to struggle with how best to organize them all. But now, with my favorite new feature in Microsoft Edge, I have the ability to set aside tabs. For example, I find three articles I want to review with my class, so I open each article in separate tabs. Then, with just one click in the upper left corner of Microsoft Edge, I set these tabs aside. I can restore the tabs as needed, or I can organize multiple tab sets for different subjects or periods. With this feature, I can organize and set aside tabs for math, science, and geography lessons in an efficient manner.
2. Reading List
Whenever I have spare moments in my day, I’m searching for reading material, current events and topics of interest for my students. I usually have just enough time to find an interesting article, but not enough to read it thoroughly before letting my students in the door. No worries! In Microsoft Edge, I use the to save items to my Reading List to return to later. This is also really useful when I’m searching for multiple sources of content around a similar topic. After I’ve saved the items to my Reading List, I can access them later, from the Hub, when I have more time for a focused review of the material.
3. Reading View
We are in the process of rolling out Windows 10 to devices across my district, and I’m eager for students to have access to the Reading View in Microsoft Edge. In the meantime, I use my computer to demonstrate this feature. For example, we are reading about another country to prepare for a Skype session with a classroom. Activating the Reading View in Microsoft Edge removes advertisements and other distractions. When placing links in our OneNote Class Notebook, I can add the word “read” and a colon in front of the URL so students are redirected automatically to the reading view for that page.
4. Web Notes
Inking annotations and making comments on the web is even easier in Microsoft Edge. Just tap or click the icon to Make a Web Note, and a handy purple toolbar appears across the top of your Microsoft Edge browser. Select a pen to write questions in the margins, or a highlighter to call out key text in an article. You can also add a typed note or screen clip a portion of the page. These are just a few of the tools at the ready in Make a Web Note to take thoughtful researching to the next level.
5. Sharing in Windows 10
Whether it’s a web note, an article, a webpage, or even a set of tabs, it’s so easy to share directly from Microsoft Edge. Just look for the Share icon or the ellipsis for more options. For example, students can share their web notes directly to OneNote, while I can share a set of tabs with my colleagues via Mail.
6. Microsoft Edge Extensions
One last time-saving option I’d like to share is the Microsoft Edge Extension, Office Online. Once installed, it appears in the Settings panel, accessed from the ellipsis in the upper-right corner, and allows me to access my existing files or create new files quickly from the Microsoft Edge browser. For example, I find an interesting article about the upcoming solar eclipse and want to share it with my class. In just a few clicks, I create a new Sway from it and begin collecting resources for next week’s newsletter. For more tips on using Office Online, take the training on the Microsoft Educator Community here.
These are just a few of the enhancements in the Windows 10 Creators Update that provide ways for educators and students to organize resources and content efficiently. To learn more about these features or see additional benefits of Microsoft Edge – whether you’re just browsing or planning next week’s lessons – visit https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/microsoft-edge.