Sunday, April 20, 2014

Spring Cleaning


Organization, Organization, OrganizationApril blog .jpg


We have been using Google Drive for awhile now and it is time to get organized!!
Spend a little time this spring to organize the emails and documents into folders to be ready for more projects next year. Google can help save some time in your day:

Create documents in google drive- this is the first step. Google Drive will automatically save it. No more clicking save or forgetting to click save before the thunderstorm!
  • When you are creating that document there is going to be something you will need to reference or learn about. Forget “Googling” for it in a separate tab, highlight the item, navigate to “tools” at the top of the document and select “Research”. Instantly link to what you are looking for from the information in the panel that pops up on the right. Make a change in a google doc linked to your website (for example that classroom newsletter) and it will update on the website, there is no need to get into two places.  
  • Selecting “share” documents and collaborate or comment on documents in real time.This is great for checking student work (formative assessment) or doing team lessons. No more emails back and forth. Plus the history of revisions feature allows you to change your mind.
  • Load all your pictures from an activity into a Google Presentation for a quick slide show/video on your website.
  • Create a form for parents to fill out that will populate a Google spreadsheet automatically.
  • Add Doctopus to a spreadsheet and have your students add their work to a project folder seamlessly.
  • Add tasks to your calendar that will keep you on track.
Create Folders - this is a critical step in organization. The folder can contain any source of documents such as word, pdf, pictures, video, or google.docs. Share whole folders or individual folder documents.
  • In Google Drive use  the “more” button that appears at the top bar above the word “title” by checking the box next to that document. You can see the details of that document, star it and of course delete it.
  • In Gmail checkmark the box next to an email, find the “more” button at the top bar and create a folder or tag for the email. Move all emails of that type into the folder by selecting “filter messages like these” or “nest” them in seperate folders under one main folder.Create one folder in Gmail called “Action” to alert you to act on these items first.
  • Drag and Drop items to folders or archive them- clear the inbox!
  • Try Google keyboard shortcuts
More Sorting Tips:
  • Color code the folder in Google Drive by right clicking on the folder and select a color.
  • Explore Gmail Settings -Color code the emails in Gmail by going into your settings  and selecting more than one type of star. Also in Gmail settings add an automatic signature instead of typing that in every time!
  • Use the search box in Google Drive or Gmail to find what you need by name, tag, star, or folder
  • Install the google Drive app on your mobile device- Add items to folders immediately.

More Organization:
In My December blog post I mentioned a few favorite things for organizing, here are more idea’s:
If you want students involved consider creating a classroom wiki - Wikispaces allows educators to create a classroom wiki for free. Students can log in to the URL provided by their teacher with a username and pre-set password. Wiki’s are a great tool for adding and sharing items for any project. It is a private site that is easy to access for students and teachers. There is also an assessment feature that will show the teacher a students progress on an assignment.

IFTTT- this one is a must try. “If This Then That” is a recipe creator that you can use to organize all the tweets, emails, rss feeds, photo’s and social media notifications without you doing a thing. Have you ever wondered how all these people send out so much information all the time? This is how they do it. If you have an ios device it will even automatically set your lights through the Philips Hue bulb!

APPS: These apps work with Google Drive and are mobile.




super Organization - I wish my shelves looked like this!color coding.jpg



Photo by Juhan Sonin