How can students work at home & at school with the same productivity software & no compatibility problems?
How can students share individual files AND whole folders with their teacher ONE TIME regardless of the # of future changes?
How can teachers monitor progress, contribute comments, make revisions, & facilitate individual, small group, or whole class learning?
Where to start, right? I suggest with Google Docs and Google Drive. While I have had numerous instructional videos posted on the LISD Student Gmail & Google Apps Resources page for a while now, and I've begun to build a Google Apps area here on Tech4Folks, these resources focused primarily on how to use these GApps services in isolation. Until this point, I'd neglected to show teachers how they can really begin to take advantage of what Google Docs and Drive can do for the management of student work. Here it is in a nutshell: with your existing email@example.com email account, students can do a one-time share of a folder with you at the beginning of the year. You have them title that folder with their last name, period, and the subject (this is for them and you), and then place each of those student folders in your own period-specific folder. Once the sharing is done, it would look something like this (right).
All your students sharing one folder with you, which you've organized by putting into class folders. Without any other action on their part, everything they put in that folder from that point on you have viewing and/or *editing rights to...collapse the folder or expand the folder, you've got all the work they've created or stored in Google Docs a click or two away!
Want more! When working with Google Docs, everything is web-based, so there are no programs to be installed and no compatibility issues to worry about. Students will never come to class asking you to open a .wps (Microsoft Works) file again.
NEXT STEPS: Watch the 13 minute video below if you have time. It will show you this process in action. Then, this spring, stay tuned for the multiple Google Docs & Drive trainings I'll be offering after school and during conference periods, and let me help you set up your Google account! Lastly, look for more trainings to be offered this summer during Summer Tech Week (July 16-18 and July 23-25), and during August Professional Development!
If you're really eager to get the hang of it this spring (when some of you have a bit of a post-testing window to work with and evaluate possible resources for the fall), email me and let me know. I'd be glad to help you out one on one!