This week I helped a number of people get started on Google Drive so I wanted to create a general overview to help folks get going when I wasn’t around.
Google Drive (formerly Docs) has become my “go to” tool for most anything I create anymore. Instead of opening up Microsoft Word, I fire up my browser and compose whatever I’m creating online. Essentially, Google Drive is an online productivity suite that includes word processor, spreadsheet, online form, and presentation programs that can be created, edited and shared using only your browser. There are certainly challenges that come with this, but the benefits go a long way to outweigh those issues.
- Share and collaborate in real time – The ability to share a document is huge for me. No longer do I have to email documents to everyone I need to collaborate with, I simply share the document and everyone has instant access to it and everyone has the same version document and can see updates as they’re being made.
- Edit and access the document from anywhere – Regardless of which computer or device I might be using, as long as I have an internet connection, I can get to and (typically) edit my document.
- Save and export copies – If I need to share a document with someone who doesn’t use Drive, I can download that document in all of the Microsoft formats as well as a PDF. This gives me great flexibility for how I use these documents.
I could go on and on about why I use these tools and how it has changed my workflow but instead, here are some resources to get you started.
- Google Docs 4 Edu – A site I created for a workshop on Google Docs
- Google Drive and Docs for Teachers 2012 – A guide made by Richard Byrne at Free Tech 4 Teachers
- The Paperless Classroom with Google Docs – A number of how-tos around Google Docs
- Google Docs like a Rock Star – This site was created by Wendy Gorton
- Google Apps Ninja Program – Created by Jeff Utecht for students, but there are some great resources here to learn about Docs
Sign up for a Google Account - This video is a little older but the process is generally the same.
Creating and sharing a document in Google Drive
Sharing a folder in Google Drive
This is a small list but should at least get you started.
Cross posted to Parkway Northeast Middle School Friday Flyer