Last week I wrapped up the third session of the Practical Ed Tech Virtual Summer Camp. Nearly 200 people attended in June and July. One of the topics I covered that seemed to resonate with a lot of elementary school teachers was the idea of building your own search engine to limit the scope of the searches that kids conduct. This is something that anyone can do without needing any programming or coding skills.
Google’s Custom Search Engine tool can be used by anyone to create his or her own search engine. In Google CSE you specify the pages that you want to have indexed in your search engine. So if you only want to include a handful of kid-friendly sites in your search engine, you can do that. You can share your search engine by giving students the direct link to it or by embedding it into your own website by using the code that Google provides.
When your students have progressed beyond the basics of search, share and review this Google Doc of ten search tips with them. And as I’ve mentioned in the past, Dan Russell’s book The Joy of Search is hard to beat for learning how to conduct truly advanced searches.