Locate reference materials using Search


After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Conduct a search for a video or article online
  • Translate written sentences or an article to another language
  • Enable video captions or subtitles
  • (Optional) Enable SafeSearch


The following scenarios are examples of how educators search for videos and articles, as well as translate content to other languages.

Search for a video or article for a lesson

Ms. Juarez is a social studies teacher at an upper secondary school in El Salvador. She notices that yesterday’s lesson on the independence movement in Central America did not capture their attention.

With internet access on her laptop, she searches for a video that brings the independence movement to life. Then, she starts today’s lesson with this video by connecting her laptop to a projector in the classroom. The students are engaged immediately and she is able to start a discussion about what they saw in the video. All students are engaged in the discussion.

Translate a foreign video or article to a local language

Search-Intro-3rdUseCase_sm.jpgMr. Sloan teaches literature to students in their 8th year. He has been having a difficult time explaining how different cultures around the world teach different values through fables and myths. So he searches online and finds fables from Europe and similar fables from South Asia. He translates them to French for his class.

The next day, the students read the fables and they are able to see how in one fable a person leaves home, searches for happiness, and finds it by finding a spouse, land, and a wealthy kingdom at the end. Another fable from a different region tells the story of a person who leaves home, searches for happiness, and finds happiness by giving everything up and losing everything. The students are able to see how fables and myths reflect societal values in different places. They ask Mr. Sloan to read more literature from around the world.

Teach students online research skills

A 10th-grade language instructor, Ms. Sandinski, asks her students to write a paper on the life of a famous mathematician or scientist. The students turn in their assignments and Ms. Sandinski realizes that many students have written incorrect information from the Internet and some have simply copied and pasted information from the Internet.

She decides that the class will redo the assignment.  First, using anonymous samples from their assignments, she trains them on how to do proper searching and research online, how to determine if a source is trustworthy or not, and how to put information found online in their own words. The students redo the assignment, and it is much better. In fact, other teachers begin to thank Ms. Sandinski because the level of research-supported writing in their courses has improved.


Search for videos or article topics

This section provides step-by-step information about how to search for videos or article topics. You can search for videos or article topics using Google Search, Wikipedia, or YouTube. 

To use Google Search:

  1. Navigate to http://www.google.com.
  2. In the Search bar, type in your topic of interest; for example, “educational technology.”
  3. Press Enter.
  4. Select an appropriate result on the display page.

To use Wikipedia:

  1. Navigate to http://www.wikipedia.org.
  2. In the Search bar, type in your topic of interest, for example, “Bloom’s Taxonomy.”
  3. Press Enter.
  4. Select an appropriate result on the display page.

To use YouTube:

  1. Navigate to http://www.youtube.com.
  2. In the search bar, type in your topic of interest; for example, “How to use technology in a science class.”
  3. Press Enter.
  4. Choose and select a video from the results on the display page.

Translate written sentences or articles to other languages

You can use Google Translate to translate sentences or articles into other languages. 

To translate content:

  1. Search for a video or article online.
  2. Watch the video or read through the article.
  3. Summarize the video or article in a few sentences.
  4. Navigate to http://translate.google.com.
  5. In the left box, type in your sentences.
  6. If, above the left box, it says “[Your Language] detected,” proceed to the next step. If it does not, click the down arrow and select the language in which you typed the sentences.
  7. Click the down arrow above the right box and select the language to which you want to translate the content.
  8. Copy and paste the translated words or sentences into another document.

To listen to the sentence, click the speaker icon at the bottom of the box.

The option to listen to the translation is only available for certain languages.

Enable video captions or subtitles

If captions are available, you might be able to choose different caption languages by clicking the captions icon:

  captions icon or 

If the language that you need is not there, you might want to try auto-translated captions, which uses Google Translate.

To enable auto-translated captions:

  1. Click the captions icon at the bottom of the video.
  2. Click Options.
  3. Click Translate Captions.
  4. Select a language.
  5. Click OK.

Captions are only available on videos where the owner has added them, and on certain videos where YouTube provides them automatically.

(Optional) Enable SafeSearch

  1. Navigate to http://www.google.com/preferences.
  2. In the SafeSearch filters section, select Filter explicit results. When SafeSearch is on, sexually explicit video and images are filtered from Google Search result pages, along with results that might link to explicit content.
  3. Uncheck the box to turn off SafeSearch. When SafeSearch is off, the most relevant results to your search appear, which may include explicit content when a student searches for it.
  4. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

Classroom connections

You and your students can use the information you have learned in this lesson in the following ways:

  • Spark lively discussions - Engage students by showing a video relevant to their lives. Video clips can bring in different perspectives or encourage  students to consider a new viewpoint, helping to spark a discussion. Through video, you can keep your class exciting and new.
  • Archive your work
    • Capture and save projects and discussions so you can refer back to them year after year. This will also help you save time as you can assign old videos to your new students.
    • Record critical parts of your lesson so you can review how you taught that lesson in previous years.
    • When absent students ask what they missed, send them a link to the video and they will never fall behind.
  • Encourage students to dig deeper - Give students the option to dig deeper into a subject by creating a playlist of videos related to that concept.
  • Help struggling students
    • Videos (or playlists) can help supplement in class teaching for struggling students.
    • Students can review the videos at home.
  • Help students review for upcoming exams
    • Easy-to-watch videos of test review and flashcards can help students to hear and understand a teacher’s explanations as they study.
    • Provide remediation for concepts yet to be mastered.
  • Promote better understanding - Help students understand abstract concepts through digital animations.

Learn more

Additional information about the topics in this lesson can be found here:

Google Educator Group Curricula

Online help and tools


Part A. Practice using your Internet search skills to find answers to the following questions.

1. In what year was Bloom’s Taxonomy published?

2. Who is the author of the book Pedagogy of the Oppressed?

3. Who was the first president of a free, democratic South Africa in 1994?

4. In what year was Google founded?

5. In what city did Socrates live?

6. In which country was the Buddha born?

Part B. Practice finding and translating online videos and articles

  1. Turn SafeSearch on.
  2. Search for an online video called "The Moon in Google Earth."
  3. Turn on captions.
  4. Translate the captions into a non-English language or a local language.
  5. Summarize the video in a few sentences.
  6. Navigate to translate.google.com.
  7. Type in your sentences.
  8. Translate them to a different language.
  9. Turn SafeSearch off.

Part C. How will you use Google Search in your classroom?

Please answer all questions in order to receive credit for this project.

Please answer all questions in order to receive credit for this project.

Extra credit

Practice answering questions using A Google a Day.