Parent Technology Blog
Google Apps is new this year for Tigard-Tualatin students. What are these Google applications and how will they help?
Download PDF version of this newsletter or Spanish version.
Google is providing over 10,000 accounts for students at no cost to the District. Google usually makes money by placing advertising in front of Gmail users but advertising is turned off for all student accounts. Google Apps comes to TTSD as a result of an agreement between Google and the Oregon Department of Education. It's important to know that a Google Parent Permission Form is required for students to use Google Apps. http://www.ttsd.k12.or.us/google
Google Docs includes online word processing, spreadsheet, presentation and drawing applications. Students can work on documents from any Internet accessible computer and can easily share work with teachers and other students. There won't be any dogs eating this homework. Other student headaches like lost floppies or USB drives are a thing of the past as all files are stored in the Google cloud. Word documents save automatically as students work and several students can work on the same files from different locations at the same time.
Teachers will be using Google forms for student tests and quizzes. The results go into a Google spreadsheet where the teacher can quickly see how the class is doing and where extra instruction is needed. Parents won't need to buy poster board for student presentations now as students use Google presentation for reports and projects.
Gmail -Students in high school have full-Internet email access while younger students initially have the ability to email only their teachers and other students. Email access for middle-school students may expand in the future after Internet safety training for students and parents. All student email is filtered from known inappropriate sites and is archived for disciplinary purposes. It's important to know that some inappropriate email may get past the filters. Students are trained to delete email that is spam sent from Internet advertisers and to tell teachers about inappropriate email sent from other students.
Google Calendar allows teachers to publish homework calendars that include links to learning resources and even attached Google Docs files. Students can subscribe to classroom calendars and always be up to date on what's happening in class. Parents can also view classroom assignment calendars via school web sites. Students can use their personal Google calendars to keep track of their own activities and events.
Google Sites is where teachers can create online courses and post materials for students. Students too will be able to create sites and publish information. For a couple of examples, see the District's CyberSafety site and another on Digital Photography, both published in Google sites. Learning how to create web sites and the laws around copyright and publishing is part of being a Digital Citizen and a new curriculum strand for TTSD students. Parents can read more about Digital Citizenship on the District's CyberSafety site.
Cybersafety course: https://sites.google.com/a/ttsd.k12.or.us/cybersafety/
Digital Photography course: https://sites.google.com/a/ttsd.k12.or.us/digital_photography/
Share Google Apps with your children. The best thing about Google Apps is how easy it is to share access to files and email. Parents are encouraged to explore Google Apps with their children by logging in together. Students have been warned that Google Apps at TTSD are not private and that their accounts may be monitored for compliance with school policies. Students are expected to follow school rules when online just as they do in the classroom. It's OK to ask your children to share their Google password with you and to look over their school work stored in Google Apps.
For more information, read the Google Parent Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) linked from http://www.ttsd.k12.or.us/google.
Have questions? Use the form below to submit a question.
Click on the screen image at left to go to the Google - Teach Parents Tech playlist of videos.
1-2 of 2