Sunday, September 10, 2017

Symbaloo- A useful homepage on browsers

Symbaloo is a visually appealing, accessible, and editable website of all your favorite links saved on the cloud.  During my first year of teaching technology, I was constantly putting saved links in our public folder and the students would spend a lot of time clicking through to find these links.  Also, it was difficult for our kindergarteners and first graders to read so I would either have to spell out the link or walk around to open the folder for 25 to 32 of them.  That's time wasted! So I came across Symbaloo, which is a bookmarking service on the cloud.  Symbaloo allows you to create a pretty page of tiles and fill each tile with the link to your favorite website or access to docs, slides, or PDFs saved on the cloud. You can even choose your own icon so it's simpler to tell younger students to click on the "owl" page or "letter Z" page.

Below is a quick video on how to add a tile on your Symbaloo page simply clicking on the tile and typing in the website then choosing the readily available icon or a symbol.  Afterward, the most important step is to remember to click the curved arrow to upload it to the site.

The next thing I did was add it as a homepage to my browsers.  I particularly like Chrome because it's faster and more seamless, but Internet Explorer and Firefox can perform the same tasks. Take the link of the Symbaloo webmix and open up a browser.  Paste the link in the address bar and then click enter.  When the page is up, click on the three dots to the right hand side and click on "Settings".  Scroll down to "On Startup" and choose the third dot "Open a specific page or set of pages" and choose "Use current page."  When that's complete, I close the browser and open a new one to test if Symbaloo opens up and it's all set for my students! This is simple and saves a lot of time, definitely highly recommended.

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