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The 23 Things
Info for Schools & Participants
Tweets by @lottascales
Course "offspring" (the ones I know about, anyway):
Raptor Web 2.0
TCS at Play
23 Griffin Things
Course adapted with permission from
PLCMC Learning 2.0
as developed by Helene Blowers.
Thing 20 (Week 9) - Collaboration in the Cloud: Getting Started with Google Drive
One of the hallmarks of the new web is the idea of the
Internet becoming not just a place we "go," but a place we "do
," allowing users to perform "software" tasks (such as word processing and image editing) online, inside a web browser, often collaboratively. A great example of this trend is the development of
Google Docs (now Google Drive)
, which allows users to create and share
online, for free. I expect many of you have already been using Google Docs before this course.
All of you have been using Google Docs since the day you began this course, by adding your info and marking off "Things" in the course spreadsheet. We have over 100 people all editing a single spreadsheet online.
Google Docs in Plain English from our friends at CommonCraft
This is a little bit dated (anyone see a pattern?), but still a great conceptual overview. If you are still emailing attachments and trying to manage "versions" of documents you will be excited....
What's all the fuss?
While it doesn't include every advanced feature of traditional desktop office software, Google Docs/Drive has many attractive features including
some that traditional desktop software can't match
. And they are always
adding new features
. Here are a few of the highlights.
. Microsoft office costs a home user about $300, a student or teacher at least $100.
. If you are familiar with the basic toolbar functions in Word, Excel and Powerpoint, you should find Google Docs fairly intuitive to navigate..
accessible from any computer
. There is only
of each document, and you can never lose it.
with Microsoft Office (and other file formats), allowing importing/uploading of existing documents, spreadsheets and presentations, and downloading/exporting of files to edit in Microsoft Office.
Share documents with other users (up to 200!) and edit them
! One useful classroom application would be for a teacher to give feedback on a student essay or paper within the Google doc, rather than on a printed version. Also great for peer-editing. Another is to create a
(or any sort of collaborative real-time effort), such as
that one my colleagues and I contributed to a few weeks ago at a conference
free file storage
(15 GB across
Drive, Gmail and Google+ Photos
!). You can upload and share any type of file in Google Drive, not just "office" files.
It offers built-in
. Google saves every version of a document with a time stamp and username (like a wiki), allowing users to
Compare any two versions of a document, seeing exactly what has changed.
Know precisely which content was contributed by each user. (e.g. teachers can evaluate and track student contributions over time).
Easily revert to an old version at any time.
: Users can discuss a file while working on it. Google
allows viewers to discuss the presentation while watching it online!
: Create a survey, poll or other form and email it to selected respondents, or publish it to the web and send the link to desired participants. Results are instantly stored in a Google spreadsheet.
sharing and publishing
options. Documents can be public or private (unshared); Spreadsheets and presentations are
in other web pages (such as wikis).
It offers an
that will allow you to easily manage and sync your documents across all of your devices. (Not asking you to dig into that for this Thing, but good to know!)
Discovery Exercise: Explore Google Docs/Drive
Google Drive tools work most seamlessly in Chrome.
¤ "SHARING" NOTE:
The real power of Google Docs is collaboration among multiple editors.
You may want to begin a document and invite one or more of our course participants as collaborators (click the Share button and add their gmail address to send them an invitation) so that you can work on it together. A single collaborative document can "count" for each person's completion of this exercise, as long as everyone contributes to the document. This is especially powerful if you collaborate in real time (you will be able to see each other make edits, as in the Campaign Speech video above).
PART 1: (~20-30 minutes)
Log into Gmail) and click Drive at the top of the screen. Create a
Try to do this activity when you have a real purpose for creating a document).
Practice using several formatting tools and features
. As you explore, consider ways you might incorporate Google Docs into your classroom, professional and personal life. Especially consider how you might
collaborate with colleagues and students
using Google Docs. You might even co-create a document listing all the ideas you have for using Google Docs...
Things to try while exploring:
- change font and font size, make text bold or italic, change font color, add bullets or numbers, change alignment.
Insert a picture
from your computer or from a web URL (Insert menu) -- btw, Foreign Language teachers: the Insert menu also has a
Add a table
and enter some text in the cells. (Table menu)
Add a link
- Two ways: Simply copy and paste a URL into the document; Embed a link by highlighting some text and clicking
on the toolbar to paste the URL. Note the option to "open link in new window").
Insert a comment
- (Highlight some text, then go to
Insert menu > Comment)
After you have
your file several times, check out the
File > See revision history
When you have finished exploring,
SHARE your document
and anyone else you might want to share with. (While viewing your document, click the
button and enter our gmail addresses where it says
, then click
‡ HELP Videos (From the Google Docs YouTube Channel)
Getting Started With Google Docs
PART 2: (~20-30 minutes)
Explore either the
tools (or both if you are having fun). Begin a new file and see what you can "figure out." Again, think about how this tool might fit into your classroom, professional life, or for personal use --
Again, try to complete the PART 2 activity when you have a REAL need to use Microsoft Excel or Powerpoint).
PART 3: (~20-30 minutes) - Upload, Download
one or more existing documents from your computer to Google Docs. See how they "look" when uploaded. (
File > Upload
your Google document, spreadsheet or presentation in a format of choice (
File > Download as.
Check out a sample form
Complete this brief form
I created using Google spreadsheets. (Instead of sending an email invitation, I simply linked it here). To create your own form select
Create > Form
from the Google Drive menu. Your form results will be stored automatically in a spreadsheet (you have to select whether you want a new spreadsheet or an existing one). Forms I have used at least a hundred forms with colleagues and students.
Write a blog post reflecting on your initial experience with
. Include at least
for using Google Docs (and/or Spreadsheets, Forms, Drawings, Presentations) in classroom learning and/or professional learning/productivity. At least one idea should reflect a
use. Please include "Thing 20" in your post title.
help on how to format text
Turn off "Getting Started"