Google Drive

GoogleDrive

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Google Drive lets you store and access your files anywhere on any device. As a personal cloud storage service, it’s certainly comparable in features to Dropbox. Where Drive really excels is in its powerful options for sharing and collaborating on your work anytime and with anyone.

Google Drive and Docs are part of the GAFE suite, which contains a wide range of extremely valuable tools for any school or organisation. Educational institutions can sign up for a free customised GAFE domain. You have the choice of creating Google Apps accounts for all staff and students or any subset of either. The GAFE suite contains several of the well-known apps you associate with Google. Apps include Gmail, Google Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Sites and more. You can activate all of them or select only the ones that fit the current needs of your school. Most of the apps work across devices and provide powerful features for sharing and collaboration.

Google Drive is the hosting account for your content. If your school has signed up for a free GAFE domain, accounts can be set up and administered for all staff and/or students in your organisation. Each student with a school Google/GAFE account will most likely have access to Google Drive, where they can store, share, and collaborate on their content.

You can access Google Drive on the web by going to http://drive.google.com or by downloading the drive app on your iPad or Tablet.

Distributing Content: Create a folder in Drive and give your students permissions to view it. From that point forward, anything you place in that folder will automatically be available to all students. Because you only gave them viewing rights, they will be able to open and create a copy of the document, but they won’t be able to edit the original.

Create a folder for each student and give him or her editing permissions. You’ll be able to open, review, and edit any document the student saves in that folder.

Another idea would be to create a shared folder among teachers for lesson plans, resources.

Commenting and feedback: A critical part of every teacher’s role is to offer constructive feedback to students. Too often, however, that feed comes at the end of the process, when students have completed work and submitted it. Wouldn’t it be great if you could ‘pop in’ and give some advice as the students are working on their projects? When you’re sharing a folder with a student, you have access to the files in it. Open a document in Docs and use the Comment function to highlight parts of the document and give them meaningful feedback while they’re still working. Your comments may help improve the quality of the final work they submit.