Tech Tip Tuesday: NEW Google Appointment Scheduler

Google has always had the ability to create appointment slots on your calendar, and allow people to book them. But now, Google has recently released a new version called Appointment Scheduler. Unlike Appointment slots, where time slots are added to your calendar and people can click on a button to book it, the new scheduler creates a landing page, complete with your booking calendar which includes a booking form, email confirmation, event updates, cancellation ability, and more.

This is actually a premium Google feature (which we have). To get it, you will need to go to Google Calendar first –> open the settings (gear icon) –> click settings –> scroll to the bottom of the general tab and checkmark the box for appointment schedules –> then refresh your google calendar page.

Now…

  1. At the top left, click Create Add.
  2. and select the NEW Appointment schedule.
  3. Enter a title.
    • The title is visible to anyone who has the link to your booking page.
    • The title appears on your calendar for schedules and bookings.
  4. Set your appointment duration.
    • To set a custom duration, next to “30 minutes,” click the Down arrow Dropdown.
    • Appointments must be at least 15 minutes long.
  5. Set the date and time of your appointments.
    • You can set up a one-time appointment or a recurring schedule.
  6. To set how far in advance appointments can be booked, next to “Scheduling window,” click the Down arrow Down arrow.
    • By default, someone can book an appointment with you anywhere from 12 hours to 60 days in advance.
  7. Click Next.
  8. Optional: You can change your photo, set where the meeting takes place, and more. Learn how to edit your appointment schedule.
  9. After you edit your appointment schedule, click Save.

Google then creates a professional landing page that you can send via link to those you want to book you! Pretty awesome.

Tech Tip Tuesday: NEW Gmail Customized Layouts

Google has recently (and quietly) introduced a new Gmail feature called Layouts. This is a great tool to send out more polished/branded emails. To do this:
  1. Go to Gmail.
  2. In the top left, click Compose .
  3. At the bottom of the window, click Layouts . This is the new button.
  4. Select a layout.
  5. Click Insert.
  6. After you add the layout to the body of the email, you can add text and images or remove sections you don’t want.
    • If you include a button, make sure you set a link for the button.
    • If you add images, Google recommends you include alt text in case an image is not rendered. Alt text also helps people who use screen readers better understand your branded email.
    • To change an image in an email template:
      1. Click the image and then Change image.
      2. Select an image.
      3. Click Next.
      4. Crop the image as needed.
      5. Click Insert.

It is a pretty neat feature! Might make for some nice branding for a department, sport, or club!

Hope this helps!

Tech Tip Tuesday: Walden, A Virtual Game

So the English teacher in me saw this and couldn’t resist…

Walden, a game is an exploratory narrative and open-world simulation of the life of American philosopher Henry David Thoreau during his experiment in self-reliant living at Walden Pond. The game begins in the summer of 1845 when Thoreau moved to the Pond and built his cabin there.

Players follow in his footsteps, surviving in the woods by finding food and fuel and maintaining their shelter and clothing. At the same time, players are surrounded by the beauty of the woods and the Pond, which hold a promise of a sublime life beyond these basic needs. The game follows the loose narrative of Thoreau’s first year in the woods, with each season holding its own challenges for survival and possibilities for inspiration. 

How cool is this? They also have an educator version (still in BETA) where you can register for a license to test it out with your students. If I was still in the classroom, I would be all over this. Here is the direct link to the educator side of it: https://www.waldengame.com/educators

Hope this helps!