January 17th – A Week With Google Docs Day 1

There are a few programs that will take some additional post to talk about.  Today I’m starting what I hope to be a series called “A Week With…”  This will have 7 consecutive post about one product (for January I’m doing Google Docs) that will provide some basics and also some additional uses for everyone to learn something new!

January 17th – A Week With Google Docs

Google Apps for Education has been a huge game changer.  Students can now share a document seamlessly with their teacher allowing for comments and preventing the money-suck that is printers (paper, toner, printers breaking down).  Now students can work through something as a “living document” and work with a teachers guidance to perfect before printing.

Creating a Template

A huge advantage to Google Docs is the ability to restrict permissions to certain people on the Google Doc itself.  You can allow others to “Edit”, “Comment” or “View Only”.  The middle school I work with has a standard template for how students should put their headings on the top of the paper, although the students try their best, they don’t always remember all four parts of it.  I suggested that they make a template of what it is supposed to look like and share that with the students (this of course got into a philosophical conversation of teaching practices and what not, but that’s ground others can cover) so that everyone’s is nice and uniform.  Google Apps has this feature to create a template, but it’s housed in the “older” looking part of Google Apps for Education and I would guess that isn’t sticking around.

Steps to Create a Google Doc Template:

1.) Create the Template first (maybe use <<first name>> as placeholders for the students to change)
2.) In the top left corner click “Share”
3.) Select the “Get Shareable Link”
4.) Select “Everyone in the World with the Link” or “Everyone in the Organization with the Link” and can view.
5.) Share that link with the class over Google Classroom or make a bit.ly or tinyurl.

Now the tricky part:
6.) Each student is going to click and complain that they can’t instantly type into the document, so they’ll have to make a copy themselves. They’ll need to go to File > Make a Copy and save under their name.  THEN reshare with you.

7.) Bonus Hint: if you copy the URL from the Can View shared document, should have “edit” and change that to “copy” and then re-share the URL, then it will force students to make a copy.

Slide from a Presentation I did for a staff meeting
Slide from a Presentation I did for a staff meeting

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