Nowadays when we are on a computer we most likely are living in a browser window. The days of installing software on your PC have given way to living in the browser. As to which browser we are using, that is an another interesting story.
But since we live in browser so much today, I've been wondering what others are using for their start up or home page. For many, the idea of a homepage or start up page in itself is a bit of a dated concept but I've been a looking at ideas to change my daily routine. Here are some ideas I've looked at. But let me ask you all... What is your home page?
Seems like one of the most popular "home page" is just simply Google
Symbaloo is a popular tool that allows you to access your bookmarks and online favorites.
Google offered a service called iGoogle which they removed a few years back. It was a start page where you could customize links and widgets. When it was removed I had a few friends who were pretty disappointed. For those of who you like this type of home page, you may want to check out Start.Me.
4) Home - New Tab Page
Similar to Start.Me , this New Tab Page is a Chrome extension that does several things. It give you quick links as well as notifications such as email and weather.
5) Quotes Wallpaper
For those of you wanting a little inspiration or motivation. Try checking the Chrome store for different "new tab" extensions. This one will give you a new quote each time.
So... like I asked above...
Most of my life growing up was about one thing:
I started in 1981 at the age of ten playing football and those early coaches all thought one thing… “he’s kind of big… let's have him be a lineman”. What that meant for me and my future was something I could not fathom. You see, being a lineman means being the guy who never scores a touchdown, never gets his name called at the game, never is more that a faceless number during a game … and when people ask your family “which one is Ryan”? They answer “oh he’s one of those guys in the middle pushing people around.”
What the pushing people around is called blocking.
It is many of these lessons which I am thinking about now.
Fast forward a bit in life, I got married to that wonderful woman I met because of football and prepared to start raising a family. I had more than a passing thought about “if we have some boys, what kind of football player will they be? A lineman like me or maybe something with a little more glory”.
Well, life is full of curveballs and we ended up with two wonderful daughters and no football in our future.
As parents, we did what everyone does… put them in as many activities as you can. Softball, theater, dance and more were all attempted. For my oldest daughter, we never quite knew what she would settle on, and then slowly it came to be.
She BECAME a volleyball player.
My younger daughter is heading down a different path, one of music and theater which I am so excited to see her in. (I’ll have more about this in a future post.).
For my oldest, we participated in club volleyball leagues, played on the middle school teams and then when high school came around, tried out for the team. She made the team and over four years moved her way to being a starter and a captain. For me, this was a such a journey. She is playing at the school where I teach; Rocklin High… the school in which she grew up around and spent virtually her entire life part of. As I migrated into a football coach, my family came with me. Both my girls and my wife became an integral part of my football and professional life at Rockin High.
But I started to change.
Football felt like it no longer belonged in my day to day life and about 4 years ago I said goodbye to it.
What is interesting is that those lessons of being a lineman I learned so many years ago, were still part of me. Here are just some of them:
You are part of something much bigger than just YOU.
The work you do is hard, often not very fun but necessary towards a greater goal
Take pride in work that others don’t see.
And now here I am watching my daughter have a great senior year standing at the middle of net blocking the balls from the opposing team.
Did you catch that? My daughter is there in the middle... blocking.
Although football was not the future for my children, here was my daughter being the middle blocker, doing the dirty work and getting the job done. This comparison is one I have thought of often… her as a middle blocker and me as a center.
This was such blow to her. All that she had worked for, all that she had hoped for in her final year of volleyball, just ended. I've coached countless football players who all have had to play their last play. I've seen them weep and get emotional of the finality of it all, but to see your own child experience this in a hospital miles from your home is devastating.
For my wife and I, this entire experience has been tough. Seeing your kid in pain, real pain, and not being able to do anything about it is heartbreaking.
She is recovering now and our family, friends and the Rocklin community have been a huge support to us all and it’s very humbling.
The good news is that her prognosis is 100% recoverable, but it will all just take time. Her leg now has a hard cast, which made her a little more independent and she is now planning on how to get around for homecoming this week!
I usually do don't write much about my personal life here on my Ed Tech blog, but I felt like writing this life update for several reasons.
First, I have been absent in much of what I was once connected with. I used to be more engaged in the ed tech community online and the combination of my change in my career (see my earlier post) and this injury has made me take a few steps back in being a connected educator. I feel guilty and frustrated at times for not being able to do it all; for having some of life’s details fall through the cracks.
So, here is a blanket, all-inclusive “I’m sorry” if an email, a tweet, a vox or some other conversation fell through those cracks I mentioned. But I am grateful those around help me stay focused to “just keep swimming”.
This is is where I am in the Fall of 2017. Teaching, TOSA’ing, Trying To Stay Connected, and Taking some time to try and take it all in.
Thanks and I hope to reconnect with many of you again soon.
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Waiting for the Tidal Wave
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My 100th Blog Post
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Bingo for the Classroom
Bring Star Wars Into Any Classroom
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Top 15 Google April Fool's pranks
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Visual Primary Sources
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My Top 10 Chrome Extensions
Share Your Stickers
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3 Tips for Teaching With Images
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CUE 16 Reflections
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NASA's Apollo photos online
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Project Based Learning