Thing 8: Collaborating, Connecting and Sharing

Google Drive

I have used Google Drive since graduate school at Syracuse University. Then, it was used for group projects, but now it’s mostly used for professional purposes. I have folders set up for assessments, Accelerated Reader, data/standards, lesson plans, sub information, book talks, book-order ideas, APPR and letter formats for donations, info to send home and reminders. I love that only Internet access is needed. I do not use Microsoft Word or flash drives anymore.

My students have a gmail account, but they need a signed permission slips from parents to use it during school. I’m hoping to send this letter home with students at the start of the 2014-15 school year so students can go on Google Docs and other Google tools. We have completed collaborative projects this year; Google Drive will enable students to collaborate successfully, especially outside of school. We would have to have Chrome installed on laptop carts at school. Now, we only have Chrome on the lab computers.

Wikispaces

I have used Wiki spaces for professional development, but not so much on the student side. I like how students can edit and collaborate simultaneously on a project. Wikispaces is user-friendly.

My fourth-graders will finish a colonial-life project soon. After completing general research about colonial life, students were placed into groups and selected a topic to research more in-depth. We had hunting, holidays, food, games and communication. Why not put all the information students gather into a wiki? Students voted on Powerpoints this time around, but wikis would be a new tool to explore. At the end of the project, students would have a wiki to showcase information. I believe students would be proud to see all their work in one place together.

I’d like to¬†Wikispaces for more projects like this. With the older grades, we do more collaborative projects between library special and grade levels.

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