Tag Archives: Google docs

Worth a read 07/29/2014

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Worth a read 07/22/2014

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Add-ons for Google Drive

Google recently introduced add-ons for Docs and Sheets. Add-ons give you extra functionality to make Docs and/or Sheets even better. You can access add-ons by opening a new Doc or Sheet and from the Add-ons menu select Get add-ons. A new window will open up with a range of different add-ons to browse; you can install the add-on directly from here or click the item to learn more.

One of the most useful add-ons available is Easybib bibliography creator – copy and paste in a URL or search for a book or journal and EasyBib will gather up the bibliographic details ready to create a reference list in one of three styles to insert into a document – it couldn’t be easier! I have successfully used EasyBib in creating a reference list for for a university assignment. If we encourage our students to use a tool like this then there is no excuse for not referencing properly.

Other useful add-ons for teachers and students alike include:

  • Open Clipart – choose from more than 50,000 free clipart images to add to documents
  • Thesaurus (Docs)
  • Gliffy diagrams (Docs)

  • VexTab Music notation (Docs): Add music notation, drum notation, and guitar tab to your documents using the VexTab language.
  • g(Math) (Docs)- Create graphs and write complex math directly in your Google Doc
  • Template gallery (Sheets) – Save time by using professionally designed spreadsheet templates
  • Doctopus (Sheets) – this one deserves a Bytes post of its own (coming soon!) – An octopus for docs! Teacher-built tool for scaffolding, managing, organizing, and assessing student projects in Google Drive
  • Styles (Sheets) – Now you can quickly add style to your spreadsheet by highlighting cells and choosing a style from the style viewer

Add-ons are relatively new so no doubt the clever people at Google and other third-party developers are working on more – stay tuned!

Great ideas for using Google Drive in your classroom

There are a wealth of resources available  to inspire and assist you in using the applications that make up Google Drive, lots of them are from teachers sharing their experiences and ideas for classroom use.

Here are three of my favourites:

1. This Glogster: Google Docs for Learning was created by Susan Oxenvad. (Check out www.glogster.com if you would like to find out how to make one of these interactive posters).

2. Google Docs, Sheets and Presentations might not have all the functionality of Word, Excel or Powerpoint (but lets face it, who even uses 20% of that functionality?) but the key thing that makes it so worthwhile is the potential for collaboration. Here are 20 great ideas to get started with:

20 Collaborative Google Apps activities for schools

3. In this article Keith Hamon describes the process he uses for teaching writing; how his students create and share their Google doc with him from the beginning of the task so that he can monitor and advise as they are writing. As he says:

Because I have access to their documents so early, I learn much more about my students’ writing and the issues that they need to overcome. This positions me for better teaching. It positions the students for better learning. That’s a win-win.

Teaching writing with Google Docs

Have you used Google Drive with your students? Will you try one of these ideas?

I’d love to hear your feedback on any experience you have using Google Drive in the classroom and share some success stories. Please share in the comments.