Google Drive- Creating, Sharing, and Collaborating Anytime, Anywhere

My guest Laura Fogle, a Technology Middle School at Lucas Middle School, and I will talk about Google Drive and how it can potentially solve some long-standing limitations with technology in schools.
Discussion Points
1. What is Google Drive and how does it work with Google Docs?
  • Google Drive is an online storage center for Google Documents and any other files that a user wants to upload. People refer to it as “cloud storage” because it stored online not on your own computer or a flash drive. Any document in Drive can be shared with anyone in the world, generally or specifically. Furthermore, any folder including all of its documents and files can be shared in one fell swoop. 
2. How would a DPS employee or student access his or her Google Drive?
  • Google Drive is available online at docs.dpsnc.net. I use the link in the Teacher Applications Folder when I am on my school computer, but I can access it from home using the docs.dpsnc.net. It is preferable that the user use the Google Chrome browser. The username and password for the user is the same as his or her DPS password.
3. Is Google Drive in Google Apps for Education any different than Google Drive that anyone in the world over the age of 12 can sign up for on the web? If not, why would someone use the Google Apps for Education version?
  • The tools are identical. However, Google Apps is synced with our Active Directory, which means you don’t have to remember a different password and you can find DPS students and staff members for the purpose of sharing more easily. 
4. What are the main advantages to using Google Drive for storing and sharing files?
  • Online and accessible anywhere, anytime. Computer at home, at school, even from my smartphone.
  • Shared filed are not copies of the original like when sharing through email So as documents change all the collaborators are seeing the most updated version.
  • If you save the file in the Google Doc format, users can work on a doc together in real-time versus separately
  • All changes are tracked and previous versions can be restored. 
5. How can teachers use Google Drive with each other and their students?
  • Lesson planning - teachers at Lucas share their lesson plans each week via GoogleDrive. Administrators and colleagues can share ideas instantaneously.
  • Covering the Information and Technology Essential Standards
    • Technology as a tool
    • Research Process
    • Project-Based learning - wonderful for group work we do in PBL. All the students in a group can create a GoogleDoc together. When they are ready to turn it in, the teacher can view the revisions of the document to see who contributed which parts to the document and when.
    • Paperless classroom - the Blaker, the biotech teacher at Lucas had students complete a research project using GoogleDocs. All the students shared their documents with Ms. Blaker so she could give them feedback during the researching and writing process and when she wanted to grade, she just logged on to GoogleDrive - she didn’t have to take a stack of papers home with her.
6. Who and when would you suggest someone download/install the Google Drive desktop folder and mobile app?
  • Allows for use of Google Docs when there is no Internet access available
  • Mobile devices- the editor in the Google Drive app is better than the editor in mobile browsers
Want to learn more?  Check out this video playlist!

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