Thursday, December 13, 2012

Using Google Drive with Students

Last week, each student in my class set up their own Google Drive account - thank you Bryan! :) The students were beyond thrilled to get started using their Google Drive and loved the idea of being able to share writing with one another and me whenever they want someone to see their work or want feedback.  They were super excited to find out that they can work on the same document at once with someone else - perfect timing for our mini-research clubs in nonfiction!

First, each student created a folder labeled "______'s Portfolio" and then created sub-folders within their portfolio for each subject area.  Then they shared their portfolio with me so I can have easy access to all of their work from, home, and on-the-go using iPad/iPhone.  Students started using their Google Drive this week when we started our nonfiction research in reading and writing workshop.  Students are sharing their notes, summaries, research plan, sources, and so on with one another as well as leaving comments for one another and working on documents together - it is awesome!  I love being able to see what they are working on and even while they are in the process of typing and talking with one another about their research - I get to see their collaboration in action and it is powerful.

Here are some comments from students about using Google Drive:
  • "It's great to share notes with my research group and comment with one another at home."
  • "It's easier than working alone and then consulting when we get back to school because you can both work on the same document at the same time and look at each other's work and revisions."
  • "It's easier to save and share documents because you don't have to worry about forgetting your flashdrive and it autosaves for you while you work."
  • "It's convenient because you can continue to work with partners and group at home without having to be in the same place."
Stay tuned to hear more about how we are using and loving Google Drive! :)


  1. Mel--this is such a great idea. Thanks for sharing it. I'll be sending Bryan an email to do the same!

  2. Can we use these with students under 13?

    1. Our students are set up with Google Drive through our district so they are able to use it under the age of 13 - hope that helps!

  3. I am working with staff now at my school to create folders much easier...I feel like it is a game changer. It is called gClassFolders and is available in Google Docs as a free template...It automatically creates three shared folders with each student you enter into the template spreadsheet. Maybe next year you could use this template to save huge amounts of time...

    As one of the three folders it creates, the best one might be a "View Only" folder which when dropped into your staff "View Only" folder, automatically goes out to all students...

    Take a peek! @callahanluke Just followed you...