The 8-Bit Instructor: Things You May not Know about Google Drive (EP037)

Download the episode here.

Episode 37

This week, we take a look at tools and features in Google Docs that can help you and your students in class. Plus, some news and updates, and a tip from the treasure chest.

News & Updates

  • School matches are available in originality reports for Education customers
    • Education + and T&L upgrade
    • Admin must enable it
    • Any submitted assignment will be added to a school repository after an originality report is run
    • Documents will be included in any flagged content
  • Chrome Updates
    • Link highlighted text
      • Highlight, right-click, select “Copy link to highlight”
      • Link with go to that section of the web page
    • New PDF reader features
      • document properties, two-page view and an updated top toolbar, which puts the most important PDF actions (zoom, jump to page, save, print and more) within a single click.
    • Chrome now mutes any notifications if you’re sharing your screen
    • Chrome performance improvements
      • decreased Chrome CPU usage, which often means more battery life, less fan noise and less heat
      • up to 100MB per tab, which is more than 20% on some popular sites
      • Soon, collapsed tab groups will freeze so they won’t use up memory and CPU
      • Name your windows coming soon

Treasure Chest:

“You don’t get paid for the hour. You get paid for the value you bring to the hour.”

Jim Rohn
  • Make the best of the time you have with your students

Boss Battle: Things You May not Know about Google Drive

Visual Organization
  • Color code your folders
    • Right click on a folder and hover over the change color option
  • Use emojis in folder names
    • Add emojis icons to your folder names to make them visually easier to see
    • Good for folder you go to often
Adding Shortcuts
  • If someone shares a file with you that you’ll use often, add a shortcut to your Drive
  • It doesn’t copy the file; think of it as a link to the original
  • Look for the Drive logo with the plus
    • In the right-click menu
    • Also in the toolbar of Drive when you click on a file or folder
Creating Files from Templates
  • Click “New”
  • Instead of clicking on Doc or Sheet, etc., use the arrow to the right to pull up a submenu and click “From a template”
Connect Apps directly to your Drive
  • Click “New” and hover over “More”
  • Click “Connect More Apps” and then search for apps you use
  • Example: I can connect Formative, then click on it in Drive to create a Formative for class
Add descriptions
  • Click on a file
  • Then click the information button
  • Scroll down and you’ll see description (this is searchable)
  • Add keywords or tags in the description
  • I like using it for types of reading and skills in a document
Available offline
  • Allows you to access files when you don’t have an internet connection
  • Right click a file and toggle on the available offline option
  • This is a great option for students who don’t have internet access at home
  • They can access and edit files at home, and it syncs the next time they are connect online
Advanced Search features
  • Search by type
  • By owner
  • Date modified
  • Include items in Trash

Crew Members’ Board (#8BitCrew)

QOTW: What value are you bringing to your classroom?

Use #8BitCrew on Twitter, tag me @comicsocks, or post longer stories in the comments section here.

Get connected

Check out my Google Classroom Udemy course.


Music by David Fesliyan (

  • Intro/Outro: “Retro Platforming”
  • Boss Battle: “Boss Battle Rock”
  • Crew Member’s Board: “Pirate Dance”
  • Wrap up: “Game Over” by Patrick de Arteaga

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links to products or services. I may receive commissions or bonuses from your actions on such links.

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