Saturday, July 26, 2014

Organizing My Online Life!

I’ll admit it. I’m a conscientious objector to the internet. Which is weird given how much I love video games and other tech but somehow learning to use different internet services is just aggravating to me. When we had to do an assignment teaching different apps that might be helpful to teachers to each other, I was not excited. However, I learned a lot about having to fit a lot of information into a small amount of space.
Making a one page (double-sided) handout describing how to use Google Drive is not as easy as it sounds. Not because Google Drive is hard to use: just the opposite. It’s really easy but there’s not a lot of space on a single page of paper, especially if you’re using screenshots. I still chose to use the screenshots despite the limited space because only using text just wouldn’t convey what to click. I think I would actually have wasted more space trying to describe in detail where buttons are than just using the screenshot. Or, I would have left my students without really giving them the information they needed. So I showed the basics of how to use the site then listed some of the more specialized features and gave them the link to tutorials if they decided they wanted to go further.
Also, I taught the” class” by sharing the handout itself and then sharing, modifying, etc. with the group. This way, I could give them more details in person but they could use the handout as a guide later. Plus, they were practicing all the skills as I taught them.

I think the take away from all of this is that you can only give students so much information at once, so choose that information wisely. Also, combine formats of information to be able to reinforce the skills being passed on and to make sure students are following. Finally, let students try new things out as they learn them (see, I’m learning from those great video game tutorials). That way, they remember it better and you know they can successfully use the skill.  


  1. I enjoyed this post Liz because I had a similar experience with this assignment. At first, I was not excited to teach my classmates about technology because I am not a huge fan of it. However, I also came out of the activity learning some useful information. I wrote a similar blog about the lessons this activity taught me, but one lesson I failed to mention was that you can only give your students so much information. I think that is a great point you bring up, that I didn't think of until reading this post. I remember a point in the activity when I felt a sense of information overload. I think my students could get that same feeling if I try to teach too much to them at a time. I think you put it nicely: We have to choose the information we want to teach wisely.

  2. Liz, I hope you are able to find peace with your tech aggravation, and find uses for yourself in the future! Google Drive is a really easy and useful tool I agree, and I really appreciate the method of teaching you used by cooperating with your peers during your lesson. Did they enjoy and benefit from that engagement? I was happy to see how we showed that technology can play a really beneficial role in the classrooms, I think even for the most staunch anti-technology educators!”

  3. I'm not anti-technology at all but it's not something I get excited about. But I'm a big fan of anything that makes my life easier

  4. I think it's a great point you bring up Liz about only being able to teach our students so much. You have to learn how to convey short and succinct information sometimes. If you throw a lot of information to your students they might miss the point because they are too overwhelmed with all the information. I was also nervous about teaching my group members about Google Drive because I felt they already knew a lot about Google Drive. I also did't know what to include in my handout. I did the screenshots to provide visual aids.