9 Tricks on Google Drive from my Trainer Test

10:13 PM Sarah Koves 9 Comments

I have almost finished by Google Trainer Exams.  This past week I did the Google Drive Suite test after spending three days studying.  Many new trick are now in my arsenal, and I wanted to share some of the best tricks with you.

This little extension is easily added to Chrome through the Apps Store.  Once installed on your Chrome browser it adds a Drive button in the upper right hand corner that allows any web page or image to be saved to your Google Drive in one click.  This extension is one that I wish I had knows about years ago.

2) Change the color of your folders in Google Drive 
Some of you may be shaking your head at me, but I honestly had no idea I could do this.  I am a visually organized person, so having my folders be different colors for every category makes it easier for me to find what I am looking for quickly.

3) The template galleries
The school district that I work in is a Google Apps for Education school, so how I did not know about the template galleries for both all of Google and our domain, I don't know.  This is one of those things where I shake my head at myself for always creating from scratch.  The Google Docs Template Gallery is filled with  all sorts of pre-made documents to edit: photo albums, press releases, schedules, etc.  You name it and it is probably in there.  I liked looking through these Education Templates.

4) Scan feature on mobile devices
If you have the Google Drive App on your cell phone, you can scan documents right to a pdf.  When you open drive on your phone, hit the red plus sign, and then select scan.  I tried this with a bunch of the girls' papers from school: calendars and informational forms.  I am so thrilled to move from the piles of paper at home; I only hope I can convince my husband to do the same because he piles too.  See Google's directions for more information.

5) Convert PDF to google doc

PDFs in your Google Drive can be opened with Google Docs and therefore transformed into an editable document.  Now, it is not a perfect science, but I tried it out on a few PDFs that I thought would be nice to change like the scan of the W-2 I had from two years ago that I wanted to change.

7) Google Forms Tricks
Google Forms have been a staple for me since I wrote my Master's thesis. I have never found a data collection system that is better. What I didn't know was that after a response is submitted, you can publish the results or give directions or a link to another page. I also didn't know that you could email the form and have people respond right from the email. I believe this will be a game changer for me for my use of forms.

8) Revision history
The idea that Google keeps track of who changes a document and when should not surprise me or anyone else.  Know thing I could go File>See Revision History and look at what people have done to documents is a handy feature for a teacher that works very hard at peer and self-revision with her students.   My juniors just had research papers due, and the week before I showed them this feature in a sample paper, and I made them aware that it was how I was going to evaluate their use of revision.

9) Multiple ways to insert images
Most of us know Insert>Image and some of us know that Google Drive allows for drag and drop of images into documents (Blogger doesn't support this, but I won't go into that).  What I never paid attention to was that the window that pops up also has an option to search the web for an image.  Not that I promote the use of any image on the internet, but I can certainly see uses where it would be nice for younger students.

I am hoping to finish up my Trainer Tests this month and share more tips with you.

While you wait, follow my technology board for more great ideas.

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