Where to start? In my short 9 years teaching, I have seen a dramatic change in technology and how it is used in schools.
My first job was on the Upper East Side in a 14 classroom talent and gifted school that I pushed to giant laptop carts around and into classrooms. I taught them Microsoft Office basics and how to research on the internet. Our primary focus was saving to USB drives that the students had purchased from the “school supply list” and learning how to organize folders inside of them.
My next year was spent at another school with hard wired desktops in a computer lab. I setup the Apple server with usernames (600+ students) based on their graduation year and taught a few lessons on how to organize their documents folder (on iMacs), and still continued to teach Microsoft Office products.
After a few years I moved to the high school level and a few teachers had just started with Google Docs. The ability for high school students to find and figure out the somewhat confusing (at the time) Google Docs was a great asset to experiment in.
Fast forward to today where Google Drive is only one of the cloud based storage solutions for schools to use (also see Office One Drive and iCloud) and this has helped bring in a new era of teaching students.
January 8th – The “Cloud”
Cloud based storage should be a dream for every teacher. We shouldn’t have documents that contain anything, except some learnin’, so the confidential worries shouldn’t come into play.
Microsoft OneDrive offers about 30 GB storage and (obviously) works well with Microsoft Products. You can open on the browser (I used Chrome) and edit and share. I just haven’t used Microsoft Products in a while so I’m not very familiar but it seems to be getting better (than the last time, 2 years ago) that I checked it out.
Apple’s iCloud is a little bit better and continues to improve. iCloud storages all your information, which I like because my rely on Passcodes and Notes, but the storage space (only 5 GB) is a huge bummer. Similar functionality to the others, just with a Apple spin.
Google Drive is the original and hard to say its the best, but it’s certainly what most are comfortable with. You can use it as just storage for files (ie upload a Microsoft Word document and then download it to a different computer) or edit inside of the drive (as long as they are “editable” – we’ll discuss that in a later post). In schools with Google Apps for Education, this just makes the most sense, and all the young ones learning it will make it more difficult for Apple and Microsoft to catch up! But I guess that’s business…