My Students Have Chromebooks! Now What?

My Students Have Chromebooks! Now What?

This blog will provide a step-by-step guide for implementing Chromebooks in the classroom.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Give Me the Keys So I Can "Drive!"


*******START HERE!*******

All of your students have access to their own Google Drive.  This is basically a large space where they may keep files, pictures, videos, forms, drawings, folders, etc...  It's kind of like a giant flash drive that you never lose and it will never break.  Or at least we hope so for now...

This is the Google Drive Symbol:

**  If you are not working with a Chromebook, Google Drive may be accessed from ANY computer or device by typing: in the search bar.  Then, you will see the "tic tac toe" icon in the upper right of your screen.

Activity #1:  Let's Create a Google Doc and Put it in a Folder

First, ask your students to click on their Drive Icon (pictured above).  They can find this on the bottom of their Chromebook Screen inside their "Tic Tac Toe Icon."

Don't forget!  Drive is different than email.

This is what the email icon looks like:

****  Please note:  If you are using an ipad, your Google Drive Experience will be limited.  For example, you will not be able to copy and paste pictures to documents or slide shows.  You will not see the "tic tac toe" icon on your ipad.  You may access Google Apps through the "More" link on the top of your ipad screen after visiting

When they have opened their Drive, this is where the magic happens:

NEW is where you choose what you want to create.
MY DRIVE is all the folders and files you have created.
INCOMING is where all the files are that others have sent to you.
RECENT is where you can find the most recent files you have edited.
STARRED are any files you have added a "Star" to because you want to mark it as very important, or you want to easily access it.  You can do this by clicking on the file, folder, or anything you want to "star" and then click on the "drop down dots," and then choose "Add Star."



You may even choose a color for your star!

TRASH is self explanatory.  You may even retrieve "trashed files" as long as you don't delete them from your trash forever.  


Have your students create a folder, specific for your class.  They should repeat this process for ALL classes.  This way, they can organize their assignments for all classes.

1.  Go to NEW, then FOLDER
2.  Name your folder.  For example:  SCIENCE - 2014-15

****  It is important that you stress that your students type their name if they will be sharing this folder with you!

Notice!  It you create a new folder it will now be located in your Drive.
****  If you "right click" on this folder, you can change the color of it and possibly have a different color for each class!

3.  Double click on the folder you have just created.
4.  Now, click "NEW" on the left (in RED).
5.  Click on "Google Docs."

Now, your students are working with a "Word" Document within your specific class folder.

6.  Have students name their document.

On the upper left of the document, they just click on "Untitled Document" and give it a name.

The cool thing about Google Drive is that ANYTHING you create is automatically saved.  Even if you forget to name it.  It will just remain in your Google Drive as "Untitled Document" until you trash it forever.  So, students can NEVER use the excuse "It deleted" or "I did it, but I can't find it."  Trust me, if they created it, it's there!

Whenever you create something, you have the option of sharing it.

7.  After they type what you want them to type, have your students share this document with you.

There are many ways to do this.  I will review the basics.

On the upper right of your document, you will click "SHARE."

The most basic way is to have your students type your school gmail address into the box.

Just in case you are wondering...

CAN EDIT means that the person being shared with will have full editing rights of the document.
CAN COMMENT means that the person being shared with will not have editing rights, but will still be able to make comments within the work.
CAN VIEW means that the person being shared with will ONLY be able to view the document.


What will then happen is that you will receive about 30 documents in your Google Drive and about 30 emails in your gmail, depending on the number of students in your classes, letting you know you received a new document.  So, let's go over some other tips and techniques.  All in all, it's your choice.

By the way, GOOGLE CLASSROOM does organize class folders for you and does allow your students to submit work, but it is imperative that you understand the basics of Google Drive FIRST, before you dive into Google Classroom. 


Okay, so if you don't want an additional email notification every time someone sends you a document, you need to do the following:

After they click "SHARE" they need to click "ADVANCED" on the bottom right of the box.


THEN, ask the sender to uncheck the following:


After they type your email and click send, you will see their document in your "Incoming" or "Shared With Me" Section of your Google Drive.




This might seem like extra work in the beginning, but you might appreciate it later on...

Instead of having students create separate folders for each class, in YOUR Google Drive, create a folder for every student you teach.  Label each folder something like this:


Then, share each individual folder with the correct student.

How do you share an actual folder?

Just highlight the folder in your Google Drive by clicking on it ONCE.  Double clicking will open it.

It will turn blue.

Now, click the share icon at the top right of your screen.  It looks like this:

Have students create any file specific to your class within this folder.  This way YOU are the owner and the student cannot delete the folder.  They can only delete the contents of the folder.

You can also access the "Folder Activity" and see when students either posted or removed items using the "Drop down dots" I mentioned earlier.

This is a great way to track work to show parents too!



How might I share "read only" documents with students
How do I track students' work using Revision History?


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