DEC Scan Journal : Volume 34 Issue 3
2015 Volume 34, Issue 3 15 Contents Editorial Reflections Teaching & learning Research Curriculum support Share this Resource reviews Context Teachers have always collaborated to design programs for teaching and learning, develop assessment tasks, track student learning and much more. The potential for collaboration afforded by the new online tools within Google Drive and Google Apps for Education is an exciting new development. All teachers would be familiar with the challenges faced when attempting to collaborate on traditional word documents: • being unable to edit if someone else is using it • having multiple copies of one document saved and trying to determine which one is the most recent • ensuring documents are saved in the correct place • remembering to bring the necessary device or USB with you that day in order to continue working. At its most basic level, Google Drive addresses these administrative issues and goes on to achieve much more for teachers and students. Google Drive in the classroom Students in NSW public schools have access to the DoE instance of Google Apps for Education (GAFE) through the DoE Portal. Primary and secondary students can find the link by expanding the list in the Learning area of the homepage. They can also download the mobile apps for Apple or Android and log in using their school email address. Google Drive and GAFE have incredible potential for creating authentic learning experiences in the classroom. They provide a platform through which students can co-create resources, documents and Google Apps and Office 365 can both be found in the Learning area on student portal homepages. tools, share their learning and respond to the learning of others. A recent example of this was using a table in a Google Doc as a recording tool where all students in a Year 1/2 class were given access to the same document. Their task was to identify what vegetables could be grown within a particular time frame to sell at a market at the end of term. Having this central space meant that students could see the findings of their peers, avoid doubling up on the research and contribute meaningfully to a shared outcome. The students were highly motivated by this task and engaged in a range of authentic conversations about their findings, asking each other questions as the information was recorded, and contributing to the work of others. Table in a Google Doc: Which vegetable grows the quickest? Google Drive also provides a space in which students can capture and share their work. For example, in a lesson on different lines (straight, curved, horizontal, vertical, parallel) students in a K/1 class used iPads in the school playground to take photos of examples of lines and then sort them into the appropriate folder on Google Drive. At the end of the activity the teacher used the Google Drive folder as an assessment tool by displaying the images and asking students to check if the images were in the correct folder and explain why.
Volume 34 Issue 2
Volume 34 Issue 4