Sunday, November 02, 2014

Google docs for synchronous or asynchronous collaboration


Most of us have used google docs to create and share documents with our peers. I myself have done that in several occasions. However, the mindset is always one so concerned with privacy that I had never hacked my google docs. I mean, I have always made them private and sharable with only the peers involved in a given project. That has changed after Carla Arena showed us that we could make it public and editable by anyone on the web.

Here are some screenshots to show you how you can do that. 





Once I discovered that (I mean, I kind of knew it could be done. I guess I was just concerned with privacy), I decided to try it out with my students. So, I went ahead and created an editable document for my 1B2 – English Access group. In that lesson we were working with describing people. What I did for this activity was to create a document with some pictures and some questions and fill in the blanks activities. In class I gave them a bit.do shortened url and  took them to the computer lab. They logged in and I asked them to work in twos assigning one page to each pair. Once a pair had worked on a page, I asked them to move to another page. They really liked it and I found it was a very effective way to teach and reinforce what they had learned.


Here is the doc http://bit.do/TUwy

Another activity I did that was fun was with my Teens 7. We were working on passive voice. So, I posted some pictures and wrote a model sentence with a passive voice. When we got to the computer lab, they accidentally deleted some of the images I had posted. That was good, because it gave the excuse to ask them to add their own images by copying and pasting from the web. It was really fun 
Here is the link http://bit.do/TUwm 

If you want to do it asynchronously, you can just give the link to students and they will do it from home. 
* I just removed permission to edit because I am publishing and I wanted to prevent unwanted changes to my students' original work. 

1 comment:

  1. Zé, what is clear to me is the fact that in this type of collaborative work, you can even spot the learning gaps that we still need to work with our students. So, take, for example, the first activity, now they can get back to the doc, and you can ask them to spot the mistakes and try to correct them. Or you can make another activity out of the most common mistakes they had. Also, it is a great opportunity to talk about the appropriateness of the images and sentences they post online. A great feature in Google Docs is the fact that you can insert images within the document, searching for images in Google that already have the permission to be published.

    Thanks for sharing those very simple ideas that have great impact in our classrooms!

    ReplyDelete

We´d love to hear from you.