I suggest using Google Docs to students. There are so many times they do research and work at school and at home, it makes it so much easier to store all their word documents online. They don’t have to worry about copying their work from one machine to another using a flashdrive or some other complicated method. They can simply work in Google Docs and access it from anywhere with an internet connection. I have some very unorganized students who I recommend using Google Docs for everything. Using Google Docs assures that they don’t have to keep track of a flashdrive or try to remember where they saved a Word document and can simply log onto email and pick up where they left off. Using the diigo with Google Docs is a bonus.
Google Docs has unlimited possibilities for the classroom. The possibilities of collaboration are endless. Students can collaborate and chat while working on a project from remote locations. Having sophomores who aren’t all able to drive and have very busy extra-curricular schedules, this type of collaboration also allows for them to work together but not at the same time. It has been revolutionary in my classroom and the students love working together. I would also use the presentation and spreadsheet options as well for student projects and collaboration. There are lesson plans and great ideas for the Google classroom on the Google education site as well. I am just learning all the possibilities of Google Docs. Last week, I was asked to teach the teachers in my building about Google Docs. We are in an old building and don’t have telephones in our classrooms. One of the first things I taught them was Google voice. This gives everyone a telephone in their classrooms. We live about an hour away from the location of the most recent school shooting in Chardon, Ohio. It’s just not smart to be without a way to contact 911 from classrooms. Many of us have cell phones, but many do not. This also provides teachers the ability to have phone conferences with parents from their classrooms. I use it to call the office when I have a student missing from my classroom. I’ve heard some very positive feedback from the teachers this week.