Monday, January 27, 2014

Google Drive! What are you waiting for Math Teachers?

Here it is.  You need to post EVERYTHING (except tests/quizzes) in Google Drive.  Homework.  Review Tests.  Class notes.  Class worksheets.  Goals.  Calendars.  Answer Keys.  It is so easy and your students will use the things you post.  Your students will use it on the bus, waiting at the doctor, while watching tv, and as a passenger in a car.  Make your class convenient for them.  They will reward you with accessing them often.  One of the best things about this system is that your students can never say that they lost something that you handed out.  Please see my folder that I use for my Precalculus Students:  Precalculus Student Folder  An added benefit of Google Drive is that when the students are viewing the documents, they have a preview of each document.  This is very convenient.   By the way, your students can't change anything in the folder.  They can only view it and download it.   Here is a short video on how to do this.  Or you could take the steps below.

How do you do this?
1.  Sign up for Google account.  If you have a gmail account, then you already have a google account.
2.  Go to Google Drive.
3.   Make a folder for your class.  For example Precalculus Student Folder  Do this by clicking the RED CREATE button and then click Folder naming it as you wish.
4.  Make sure this folder is public.  Right click on the folder itself and then click share.  Or check mark the folder, and then click on More at the top drop down box and click SHARE.   Change the access to PUBLIC.  At the same time grab the link for the folder.  
5.  Use the link on a blog or web-page that you own.  Just paste it to a location that the students can easily get to.  I like to make it smaller at  This is an easy site that you can shorten long urls to be your own unique name.  Of course it will have at the beginning.  I have renamed a url calendar at
6.  Download Google Drive onto your laptop.  This will enable you to store files directly to your folder on your laptop and thus straight to your students.
7.  Now, you can start putting things into this folder.  Remember that anything you put into this folder can be seen by your students.  You can actually put word files, pictures, powerpoints, movie clips and pdfs.    I would start by creating unit folders within this master folder.  Things like Chapter 1 Functions.  They will all have public permissions because your master folder is already public.  Here is the best thing of all.  Whenever you make a worksheet, simply drop a copy into your Student Folder on your Google Drive and your students will be able to access it.  Give it a try and let me know how it turns out.


Ramsey Willis said...

Hi Dave

I must say that I haven't used Google Drive the way you described here but that is mostly for two reasons. The first reason is that I do not have my own classroom yet. The second, and probably most important, was that I did not understand how to use Google Drive properly. I did not know that all of those things could be accomplished with Google Drive and using it just makes your job as a teacher that much easier. Although I don't have my own classroom yet, I can still start adding files to my Google Drive that my students will use. I can just do like you said and label my folders so the students know where to go to find material. Again, thank you Dave for the advice and inspiration.

Unknown said...

This is an awesome idea. Do you find that Google Docs may remove some of the equations typed in the math editor software? Will these files be available to everyone or just your students?

Dave Sladkey said...

Whenever I leave a document for a student to use, I save it as a PDF. Then they don't have the problem of math editor issues. When they open it, all of the math type equations that I made come out clean.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your explanations! I hope to implement google drive in my mostly paperless 6th Grade math class. When they upload the document, how would you suggest they complete an assignment by showing work and then turn in the work on Google Drive, with their work included. Note: all students have access to an IPad Air. Should they re-upload the completed document after working with another application to write on it?

Unknown said...

I use the Add-on g(math) when writing equations. There is no problem with equations showing up on a Doc when students access them.