If you are looking to spend less time waiting in the copy machine line and more time planning engaging and innovative lessons, keep reading! You won’t have to visit the Apple Store in order to use one of the best strategies with your classroom set of iPods and iPads. All you need is a Google account and your teacher creativity. So have I kept you in suspense long enough? No? Well, perhaps I should mention that you will also be helping the environment by going paperless.
One of my very talented and tech savvy colleagues, Chia Grossmann, has become an expert with using Google forms in her classroom. I have utilized her idea of creating a simple Google “Response Form” that can be used over and over in all curricular areas. Chia’s “Response Form” is a simple form to create, since it only has a place for the student number, name, and a written response area.
Here is what the “Response Form” looks like:
Keep reading if you would like step-by-step directions to create this form:
If you have never created a Google form, the process is rather simple. First and foremost, you must have a Google account. If you don’t have one already… get one. You won’t be sorry.
Then once you have logged into your Google account, click on “Documents” at the top of the page. Then click “Create.”
Once you click on Create you will see a pull down menu. Select “Forms.” An untitled form will pop up, along with the first question ready for you to edit.
Title your form “Response Form.” You can add directions about the form below the title if you like. I typed, “Please remember to write complete sentences.” My advice is leave the directions very vague because you will want to use this form for many different activities.
Now we will begin to edit question 1. This will be for student numbers (if you use nick-numbers). Title it “Student Number.” I am not including any “Help Text.” We are going to change the question type to “Choose from a list.” Now begin typing. Chia recommends typing the first name on the list as Anonymous. Then add student numbers. When you have finished, click the box next to “Make this a required question.” Last, click “done.”
Now we will make question 2. Select “Add item” at the top of the screen (it is next to the green plus sign). You will get another pull down menu. This time select “text.” Title it “Name.” Click the box next to “Make this a required question” and click on “done.”
Now for the last step for question 3. Select “Add item” again and this time on the pull down menu, select “Paragraph text.” Title it “Response.” Click the box next to “Make this a required question.” Last, click “done.”
Now you have a completed form! If you like to make things fancy then select a new theme at the top of the window. I selected the “blue bird” theme and this is what my live form will look like. When you select apply, it will take you back to your “edit form” page. You won’t see the your cutesy theme, but don’t worry it is still there.
Now that your form is compete you have several options. You can email this form to yourself so you have a link to it. But this is what I do… I copy the link at the very bottom of the page. Then I visit a QR code maker website and create a QR code for my students to get to the form quickly. I have also put a link to the form on my school webpage. Either way, you need some way for your students to link to this form on their iPods.
Once your students have accessed the “live form” on their iPods, have them make a web clip of this link (hold home key and sleep button at the same time). This way you can have your students access this same form over and over for a variety of different activities. I bet your next questions is how do you use this form with students?
This is the part where teacher creativity and innovation takes over. Here are some quick ideas for you to mull over:
- Have students respond to a question about a book you are reading.
- Have students write an opinion about a topic or story you are reading.
- Have students share facts they learned from their social studies or science lesson.
- Have students share with you their topic sentence for their new piece of writing.
- Have students write a “7 up” sentence.
- Have students explain how they solved a problem in math.
- Use this as your way for students to “TATTLE.”
- Use this form as an exit ticket.
After your students have completed their “Response Form” from an assignment you have given them, their responses will appear in the form of a spreadsheet. To access this spreadsheet, go back to your original “edit form.” Up at the top right hand corner is a tab that says “See responses.” Select “spreadsheet.” You will then see the responses from your students. In the following picture you can see the answers that I filled in on the form.
When my students are completing a “response form” assignment, I will quite often display the spreadsheet on the docucam so everyone can review others’ responses. However, I do slide the form over so the names and numbers cannot be seen so that the responses are still private. If you do this, keep hitting the refresh button to update the form as students submit their work.
If you want to save this work on the spreadsheet, select “file” from the menu bar and download it to your desktop or make a copy. When the assignment is completed and you have saved your spreadsheet, then delete the information on the spreadsheet so you can reuse this same form for another assignment.
I bet you can think of at least a thousand ways to use this simple Google form in your classroom. Not only will you be able to receive valuable written responses from your students, you will be helping to save thousands of trees by going paperless! I would love if you would share your ideas with everyone. Don’t be shy to reply!
Thank you for inspiring me, Chia Grossmann!