October 28th, 2008 | Published in Google Docs
Tom Barrett is back again for a third guest post. This time, he offers practical tips for using Google Docs in class and asks for help adding more tips. The collaborative presentation he and other teachers are creating will be a great complement to all of the ideas and projects we collected from K-12 teachers in September. We're in the process of sorting through the many great submissions and will share them with everyone in the near future. And so, without further ado, here's Tom.
The mornings are becoming darker and the leaves are changing colour here in England, the Autumn school term is in full swing. We have been using Google Docs (as part of Apps Education Edition) with a new year group for 8 weeks and we are putting into action some of the many things we learned from last year's implementation.
Whilst in the previous two posts I have explored many of the broader themes that must underpin the way sharing online docs should be approached in the classroom, I am now knee deep in the practicalities of using Google Docs with our classes. This post will hopefully give you some practical ways to use the tool in the classroom, some inspiration as to where to start and some usage tips that will help it all run smoothly.
Over the last year I have begun two presentations that share practical tips in the use of Google Earth and the Interactive Whiteboard in the classroom. I have set the presentations up so that anyone with a practical tip can become a collaborator by sharing editing rights with them. In this way the presentation expands with the advice and tips from real users and from a much wider audience of educators. All you need to do is send me your email and I will be able to add you as a collaborator to the presentation, so you can add just 1 or even 10 tips for the use of Google Docs in the classroom. (See details at the end of the presentation)
The first five are my tips, in no particular order, to get the presentation started. It is currently called "[Insert #] interesting ways (and tips) to use Google Docs in the Classroom" - but I hope that you can find time to add your own and share your advice with Google Docs users so that the name changes! Or perhaps you would prefer to just use the presentation as part of your staff training - it is all licensed under Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial Share Alike 3.0.