Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Tech Tuesday {Revisited}

It’s hard to believe I have not written since the 5th week of school! But on the same note it’s not that hard to believe, a working mom never has time to actually work once she gets home.

I sat down this morning to begin writing a series of blog posts about my adventures this past school year in creating a technology based classroom. After reading my Tech Tuesday blog from September, it’s hard to remember that our crazy wonderful technology adventure started there, it seems so far from where we ended! It was great to read this blog however, and remember just how far my babies and I grew this past year.

Back in September, while I was doing research, the one constant that kept coming up was using Google Classroom. With support of our principal I tried several times to get this program to cooperate with our classroom computers, but in the end it was not an option for us. So I was sent searching for another alternative. I needed something that would allow me to guide my students, supply them with documents and assignments, and above all let me access their work too. Since I was unable to use Google Classroom, I went for the next best thing Google Drive.

Now, I love Google Drive for myself. I save all of my work in it so that I can seamlessly share between my home computer and my work computer. First thing I did was create an account for my class. Once we had a Google Account we could do so many different things.

1. Drag and Drop Documents: Only having the laptops 3 days limited the amount of time we had to work on projects. If a project was not finished by Wednesday students could drag and drop their work into the “Student Work” folder and would have access to it for the rest of the week. This was also great because half way through the year we ran out of ink in our classroom printer, so I was able to print for them.

2. Google Forms: These are amazing! I used them to create basically a worksheet, I did them for everything; reading comprehension, grammar practice, spelling practice, math facts. You create the form, and then share the link. Students are able to go in and answer the questions and submit their answers. My students loved this because they felt like such big kids doing computer-based lessons.

3. Pre-Formatted Documents: Once we learned how to create a PowerPoint presentation, I could go in and create a template that the kids would just have to duplicate. This was awesome for my little ones because fixing a PowerPoint to be printable was a lot of steps.

4. Save Links and Documents: Occasionally I ran across a specific game, book, document or website that I wanted my students to use, either whole group or  during independent work times. I could easily save any of 
these to “The Drive” and all students could access it 
                              quickly, limited the amount of instructional time I had to 
                              spend getting there.

I love Google Drive, it was certainly a life saver in my classroom this school year. Next year I plan to incorporate it not only as an in class tool, but as a homework tool as well. Keep checking back for updates on how I integrate this.

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If you want to take a tour of how our Google Drive looked at the end of the year please feel free.

Username:    Campbells.kids1617

Password:   130PTE2016

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