Google Apps training material

I often am asked to come to a school and provide a basic Google Apps for Education (GAFE) training during a faculty meeting.  Below is the sequence and activities that I use for a 2 hour training.  Feel free to use or adapt as needed.

Google Apps for Education (GAFE)  http://goo.gl/KbhjhE

Activity 1:  Getting Started with a Google Form

Lets collaborate on a project by using a Google Form to collect data for the Mystery Book project.  Purpose of this activity:  See how a Google Form can be used to easily collect data.

  • Find a partner:  One person can be the recorder & one person can be the researcher
  • Locate a fiction or nonfiction book that you want students to share for a specific subject area or grade level. Each person should recommend (at least) one book.
  • Fill out this Google Form with your collected data and image URL
  • Here is a link to our collected RESULTS (linked removed for privacy purposes).


Before we move on …

6 Ways to collect data using a Google Form

  1. Have students conduct experiment in classroom and one member goes to teacher’s computer to enter data for that group
  2. Have students create surveys using Google forms and display on own computer; students travel from machine to machine to fill out the survey
  3. Email the form to participants to collect data (can embed the form in the email); must know all members email addresses
  4. Email the form by using a distribution list from your contacts  (very easy if using Google Apps since all domain names are the same)
  5. Share the URL of the published form; consider using a URL shortener for easy access like:  http://goo.gl/, http://bit.ly/ or http://tinyurl.com/
  6. Embed the form in a Google Site, wiki, blog or website.

Let’s brainstorm ways you can use Google Forms in your classroom:

  1. Surveys
  2. Exit ticket
  3. Collect favorite books you read the last term
  4. Supply inventory
  5. Get to know you survey
  6. Science lab data collection
  7. Checking in on long term project
  8. Voting

Activity 2:  Researching with Google Docs

Now that we have collected some book titles, each participant will conduct some basic research about the book to prepare for the Mystery Book Project.

Each participant should open a COPY of the Mystery Book research project document.

Helpful Google Docs tip:  To easily share a document with others where you want them to have a COPY of the document (versus viewing or editing) is to edit the end of the URL like this:

Thing to try on the Google Doc:

  1. Go to Tools / Research and open the research pane on the side of the Google document.  Search for your book title and locate the author’s name.  The research pane keeps the search process as part of the document writing process.
  2. What happens if you click on the Preview / Insert Link / Cite buttons in the Research Pane?
  3. Answer some of the questions. Notice the options for text formatting:  fonts, style, line spacing, indent, color, bullets, etc.
  4. Select one of the questions:  Go to Insert / Comment to leave a comment about this question.  For example:  Not sure who would like this type of book?  Comments are great for giving feedback during peer/teacher review process.
  5. Look at the options for inserting images into Docs.  You can crop images, recolor, adjust brightness, add borders, etc.
  6. Check the Revision History:  Go to File / See Revision History.  This is especially helpful if you want to see who edited a document or revert back to an earlier version.
  7. Select the blue icon SHARE.  Share this document with your partner for editing purposes.
  8. Find the grey folder icon next to the document title.  Selecting this will allow you to move your document to a specific folder.

Helpful Google Drive tip:  Have every students create a folder in Drive for a specific units/subject.  Students SHARE the Drive folder with the teacher.  Every time a student places a document, spreadsheet or slide presentation in the folder it will automatically be shared with the teacher.

Let’s brainstorm ways you can use Google Documents in your classroom:

  1. Any and all rough draft writing
  2. Peer editing
  3. Collaborative notetaking
  4. Shared resource lists:  books, links, images
  5. Classroom newsletter – publish to the web and embed doc on website
  6. Monthly calendar (table)
  7. Posters – use image options (recolor, crop, borders)

Activity 3:  Shared Slide Presentation for Mystery Book Project

The power of any of the Google Apps for Education tools is collaboration. Participants will will collaborate together to create a simple Slide Presentation that can be used two ways:

  1. Print as posters with a QR code
  2. Embedded as a slide presentation in a website, blog or wiki

The purpose of the Mystery Book slide deck is to create promotional posters to entice readers to read a book — without telling them the author or book title.  Users will need to click on the link or scan the QR code to reveal the title.  Perfect for a book display!

Editing the Google Slide deck:

  1. The Slide Deck has already been made and the link allows anyone with the link to edit.
  2. Notice that I already created a simple design with colors and fonts.  Go to Slide / Edit Master.  I find that this saves time and students focus more on the activity than editing the slides.
  3. The editing of Slides is very similar to Docs.
  4. Slides has some basic transitions and animations – but not as much as PowerPoint.  Go to View / Animations to see the options.
  5. You can embed YouTube videos in Google Slide decks.
  6. Users can write in the speaker notes section and print the slide with notes, if desired.
  7. I created the QR code with a Chrome extension:  goo.gl URL shortener.  Users will need a QR code reader (i-nigma) to scan the code & view the website
  8. Embed slideshow:  Go to File / Publish to the Web and you can choose options:  slide size, auto advance, repeat and get the embed code. This code can be embedded on a Google Site, website, blog:  <iframe src=”https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/14dW7XfofgJXjIMqLFnnXoD-936kmKu3EaPnUwT9EkBU/embed?start=true&loop=true&delayms=3000″ frameborder=”0″ width=”960″ height=”569″ allowfullscreen=”true” mozallowfullscreen=”true” webkitallowfullscreen=”true”></iframe>
  9. Go to File / Download to print slides as PDF or JPEG files.

Let’s brainstorm ways you can use Google Slides in your classroom:

  1. Rough draft of PPT then download Slides into PowerPoint for final editing/animations
  2. Every student create 1 slide for all class slide deck
  3. Embed slide deck on website for rotating presentation
  4. Images only slideshow
  5. Notecards for research
  6. Flashcards for vocabulary

GAFE Session Notes:

  1. Formative assessment – GDocs great for teachers to easily check in on student writing
  2. Long term paper – place all documents, research, images into a folder and have the student share the folder with the teacher
  3. Workflow – Decide on a naming convention for all assignments:  P3 Last First – Assignment Name
  4. Ipad vs desktop https://sites.google.com/site/colettecassinelli/ipad
  5. Use Chrome browser and Print directly to Google Drive – great for database articles because it saves a PDF of articles directly into drive & then students can move pdf into research folder.

Consensus Building & Polling Tools

Consensus Building

Consensus-building tools help participants narrow and refine proposed solutions of a project.  They are also useful in facilitating the two key requirements for reaching agreements in a work group setting by identifying and understanding issues and resolving conflicts. Teachers and students can facilitate consensus building through group discussions and polling.

Many of the ideation tools also can be used to build consensus.  Once the initial ideas are presented then through a process of discussion and elimination, ideas can be narrowed down and agreed upon.  Oftentimes students need time and opportunity to leave their comments so everyone can be  heard before a decision can be made.  Ideation and consensus often happen at the same time but separating them gives introverts time to process the ideas and comment.

Diagrams: Many of the collaborative technology tools have the ability to create graphic organizers to scaffold decision-making – like a Venn Diagram or flowchart.  Google Docs or Google Drawings has built in templates of some common diagrams or you can create your own. Students can edit drawings online or invite others to view edits in real time.  Students can chat with others who are editing a drawing right within the drawings editor to build consensus.  The drawings can then be published online or embedded in other Google programs so all can see the results.

PadletPadlet (formally known as Wallwisher) is another brainstorming tool that can be used for ideation but also for consensus making.  The ability to leave notes with messages and then move and organize them is very easy for younger students to understand and use and perfect for quick brainstorming & decision making in the classroom.  You do not need a Wallwisher account to create or post on a wall but if you create a wall without logging in or signing up, you may be unable to edit the wall after 24 hours but it will still be available to view.  Wallwisher does have some other interesting features like the ability to use RSS to follow the posts being made, add Multimedia within the notes, moderate the comments being made, or share by an unique QR code created just for your page.

Another interesting tool for older students is Debategraph.  DebateGraph is a cloud-based service that offers individuals and communities a powerful way to learn about and deliberate and decide on complex issues. These graphs allow users to visualize, question, and evaluate all of the considerations that any member thinks may be relevant to the topic at hand – and facilitate intelligent, constructive dialogue within the community around those issues.

Google Moderator allows you to create a series about anything that you are interested in discussing with your class or school and open it up for people to submit questions, ideas, or suggestions.

 


 

Polling:  Using technology tools to poll audiences is easy and efficient and polling can be used to facilitate consensus or gather information.  You don’t need specialized audience response hardware to get feedback.  Poll Everywhere conducts surveys using the web, texting, or Twitter and can be used with a cellphone (SMS), smartphone, laptop, desktop, or tablet.  These polls can be made by teachers or students.  Poll Everywhere is free for audiences of 40 people or less and they offer paid plans for larger audiences and K-12 semester-long plans.  Survey Monkey is a popular online survey tool because it’s easy to send free surveys, polls or questionnaires.

Socrative is another student response system that empowers teachers to engage their classrooms through a series of educational exercises and games via smartphones, laptops, and tablets.  Socrative is better for teacher-directed consensus building.  Teachers login through their device and select an activity which controls the flow of questions and games. Students simply login with their device or online, and interact real time with the content.

For schools using iPads, Nearpod allows teachers to create enriched multimedia presentations with interactive features using their cloud-based content tool and then share the content with the students and control the activity with the Nearpod app.  Students submit responses on their mobile devices while the teacher monitors classroom activity and measure student results on an individual and aggregate basis.

Celly is a mobile social network that works with any mobile phone or device. Members can join instantly with one text and exchange group messages, polls, reminders, and web alerts.  Celly can enhances school communication such as:  study groups, announcement for clubs, field trips, clickers & polling, reminders and alerts, notes, and interactive walls.  Learn more at http://cel.ly/school and Celly for School Start Up Guide.

Another simple solution for polling is by using Google Forms and Sheets.  Students or teachers can create a customized form to gather feedback, vote on a result, or brainstorm solutions and then the responses are collected in a spreadsheet.  Form creators can choose whether to require users to login with their Google accounts or be anonymous.  Creators can use a variety of questions types like checkboxes, grid, drop-down lists with options, multiple choice, paragraph text (which allow for long answers) or scale.  You can add section headers to divide your form in sections to make it easier to read and complete and/or you can split the questions into multiple pages

Here are six examples of different ways to collect data using a Google Form:

  1. Have students conduct experiment in classroom and one member goes to teacher’s computer to enter data for that group
  2. Have students create surveys using Google forms and display on own computer; students travel from machine to machine to fill out the survey
  3. Email the form to participants to collect data (can embed the form in the email); must know all members email addresses
  4. Email the form by using a distribution list from your contacts  (very easy if using Google Apps since all domain names are the same)
  5. Share the URL of the published form; consider using a URL shortener for easy access like:  http://goo.gl/http://bit.ly/ or http://tinyurl.com/
  6. Embed the form in a Google Site, Google+, wiki, blog or Moodle.

Finally, a favorite tool of mine is Doodle for deciding on meeting times when there are multiple options and several attendees.  Doodle will also automatically sync appointments to your calendar.