Google Docs is a free collaborative word processor, form, presentation, and spreadsheet. Google Docs has been a terrific way to collaborate for group projects in graduate school, and I am sure that there are many useful ways to use it in the classroom. Google Docs is like having an online Microsoft Office that you can share with others. Here is what the home page looks like:On your home page you can create a new document, spreadsheet, form, or presentation through a drop down menu. The left pane has your different folders and then in the center it has your open folder. When you click on the document, spreadsheet, form, or presentation it takes you to this window:
You notice that this looks just like a Microsoft Word document. You have most of the features that Word has; however, it is online.
The way that you share the document is by emailing it. On the top right of the page, it says, "Share." Your sharing options are to make it totally public, meaning that anyone can access it. The second option is to make it so that anyone who has the link can access it without a sign-in sheet. And the the third option is to have it so that viewers have to be invited and they also have to sign in. Two other options are to publish it to the web and to your blog.
Google Docs can be a great tool in the classroom. The ways that I see it being utilized is for a group project. Students would be able to collaborate from any location that has internet. Google Docs also allows students to access a document or presentation easily from home, school, or even the library. Instead of having to save on a jump drive, their work is instantly saved online. When they are ready to turn it in or save it on a computer, it is very easy to do. From the "File" menu, you select "Download" and it will download as .doc or .ppt or whatever file type you need.
Are there any ways that you have used Google Docs in your classroom or for personal use? If so, have you found it useful?
Never tried Google Docs before? Click on the link below and try it out! I have started a presentation. Feel free to add to it, and change anything you want!
Google Docs Sample Presentation