With the myriad of tools that Google has to offer, we would be foolish not to take advantage of the excellent educational tools Google can provide us (as teachers) and our students. In this class, we'll explore a few of the "social" tools that Google has to offer. To see an even more extensive list of educational tools by Google, read this post Darren made on his personal blog about why he thinks every teacher should have a Google account. This post about Google Docs is also very informative.

  • Google Docs - Wow. Create documents, spreadsheets, and (now) presentations without paying the fiddler. The best part about using these with your students is the collaboration features they have included: multiple people can be editing the same document at the same time (and with the Revisions tab, you can even see which student contributed what).



Assignment:

  1. Create a Gmail account so you can access Google Docs.
  2. Create one of each: Document, Spreadsheet, and Presentation.
  3. Share one of them with another member of our class using the "Share" tab.
  4. Publish one of each kind (Document, Spreadsheet, and Presentation). Paste links to your published files onto your wiki portfolio.

  • Google RSS Reader - RSS has drastically changed the way online communications take place. While there are a number of RSS Readers available, we will be learning about Google's because it's not stored locally - thus, with Google reader (and others - like Bloglines, for example) you can read your feeds from any computer on any campus.



Assignment:

  1. Visit a few of your favorite educational sites to see if they have an RSS feed.
  2. Add at least three different sites to your list of feeds in Google Reader.

With an understanding of what RSS is through our look at Google Reader we will investigate one of many resources which utilizes RSS and has great implications for students and classroom use.