Monday, March 30, 2009

Using Google Docs In the Classroom

I was first introduced to Google Docs by my daughter's band director, Amanda Pritchard at York Junior High. Ms. Pritchard created a form that she posted on her website for band parents to complete. It was a questionnaire regarding email addresses and other contact information. I clicked on the link to the form, completed my information and submitted. I got a message that my information had been added to her spreadsheet. Instead of spending hours compiling a contact list from handwritten information, the band director created one form, added it to her website, and notified band parents to access the link. In essence the band parents collaboratively completed her contact list for her. This was amazing to me! I was instantly interested in finding out more about Google Docs.

I visited the Google Educators site and found this great slide show on how Google Docs can be used in the classroom. I also discovered that every teacher and student already has a google account through a partnership between Conroe ISD and Google. Usernames for students and teachers are the same as in first class. The password is *last 5 digits of their social security numbers. This means that teachers can create short quizzes by using a form and posting a link to their website. Students can take the quiz by clicking on the link and signing into their google account. When their answers are submitted, the teacher's spreadsheet will show the date, time, and username of each submission.

There are many more uses for Google Docs. The Common Craft video embedded below gives a great introduction on how to get started with Google Docs. For more ideas, be sure to watch the slide show for educators.

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