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TILE-SIG Feature: Using Google Drive

 | May 31, 2013

by Marjie Podzielinski

google driveEvery teacher and student in our district has a Google login and password. This affords each student to utilize the Google suite of tools. In this article I'll talk about Google Drive, one of their latest additions to the suite. If you don't have a Google account, you can sign up for a free account at

Road-testing Google Drive

After you login to Google, click on "Drive." Google Drive is an enhanced version of Google Docs with increased storage capacity. How can you make Google Drive work for you? Here’s how. Each student logs into their individual student account. By clicking on "create" and then "document" a new page appears. The student types his work. The work is automatically saved.

If the student creates a folder, and allows access to the teacher, the teacher can read his work on line and make comments. The document is automatically saved. The student also has the capacity to set up folders and allow other students or the teacher access. This a great way to do group work and the teacher can see at a glance who has made the additions to each portion of the project.

Files Anywhere

Google Drive lets you store and access your files anywhere—on the web, on your hard drive, or on the go. Here’s how it works:

  1. Go to Google Drive on the web at
  2. Install Google Drive on your computer or mobile device.
  3. Put your files in Google Drive. It’s right there on your device.

Now your files go everywhere you do. Change a file on the web, on your computer, or on your mobile device and it updates on every device where you’ve installed Google Drive. Store the first 5 GB of your work for free.

I added Google Drive to my iPad. Now whatever I type on my iPad can be stored and utilized on my desk top. You can also drag photos or other documents to your Google Drive account. At the end of the year when you are saving lesson plans, don’t save them to a flash drive. Open your Microsoft Word account and move those files to Google Drive. They are saved and stored in the cloud.

Drive vs. DropBox

The difference between DropBox and Google Drive is the storage capacity. Google Drive has twice the capacity of DropBox. Additional storage can also be purchased.

Drive for Collaboration

Google Drive lets you choose exactly who—friends, family, colleagues—gets your files. You don’t need email attachments anymore. Just share your file, folder, or Google Doc from any device. With worldwide access, no matter what time of day, collaboration can occur. A single Google Drive document can be shared with up to 200 people. 50 people can edit and view a document, spreadsheet, presentation, or drawing at the same time. Up to 10 people can edit and view a presentation or a document at the same time. This is the smart choice for educators around the world.


marjie podzielinskiMarjie Podzielinski is a librarian at Coulson Tough School in The Woodlands, TX.



This article is part of a series from the International Reading Association Technology in Literacy Education Special Interest Group (TILE-SIG).

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