Sep 13 2017

3 Ways to Use G Suite for Education to Teach Storytelling

Google tools can assist students with exploring creative writing.

With the emergence of STREAM (science, technology, reading, art and mathematics), more and more K–12 educators are turning to tech tools in language arts and other creative classes.

While some innovative educators have found uses for tools like robotics and 3D printers in English classes, teachers don’t have to look much further than the tools they already have on hand. Browser extensions are leveraging classroom devices to boost reading comprehension. And educators can take advantage of popular G Suite for Education tools to teach students storytelling skills.

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1. Google Docs Allows for Creative Storytelling

If you’re looking for your students to do some creative writing using technology, educator and  top blogger Eric Curts suggests beginning with the easiest tool for students to use: Google Docs.

Using hyperlinks and page breaks, Curts writes on his blog, Control Alt Achieve, students can create digital “choose your own adventure” stories. By using Google Docs, Curts says it is easy for even the youngest students to add text, images, formatting and hyperlinks to headings on other pages.

“‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ stories can be a great project to inspire student writing,” he writes. “It encourages the development of creativity, planning, cause and effect relationships, elements of a story, collaboration, and more.”

2. The Explore Feature Streamlines the Technical Stuff

Explore is one of the newest features of the G Suite tools. Using elements of machine learning, Explore makes it easier to analyze spreadsheets and build out presentations.

“As you work, Explore dynamically generations design suggestions, based on the content of your slide,” reads a Google blog post announcing the feature. “We’ve seen that people save over 30 percent of the time they would have spent on formatting when they use Explore.”

By not having to worry too much about formatting, a TeacherCast article indicates that students are then free to focus on telling a good story and they can get even more creative.

3. Google Helps Keep Research Organized

One of the tenets of storytelling in K–12 education is the research paper. Thanks to technology, educator and blogger Matt Miller thinks the research paper can be reinvented.

“If you still need students to do research papers and think it’s a vital skill, Google has you covered,” writes Miller. “When used in unison, several of its tools let you do that academic work more effectively and efficiently.”

Miller suggests that students use Google Keep — essentially digital sticky notes — to gather information and keep it organized in one place. The notes made in Keep can then be pulled into the sidebar of the Google document where the student is writing the research paper.

Using Google Drawings, Sheets and Forms, Miller writes that it’s also easy for students to add multimedia elements.

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