George Lucas Educational Foundation

Google Docs in Elementary

Google Docs in Elementary

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My district recently gave us district emails for our students 4th-5th grade so they can use google docs for word processing. Is it a good idea to activate and use these accounts for students so young?

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Laura Moisei's picture
Laura Moisei
Online education forms & quizzes

I see no impediment in enabling 4th-5th graders to use Google Docs with simple tasks such as text editing and sharing. As long as they know how to use an email address and learn not to disclose their personal details to others, it's safe. Pupils learn to work in an organized way and to be responsible for their edits, as everyone can access the same document.

Whitney Hoffman's picture
Whitney Hoffman
Producer LD Podcast, Digital Media Consultant, Author

Don;'t we want to teach kids how to use email responsibly? They could send you emails if they are going to be out sick, and get assignments. They could email friends, and grandparents. Why do you think they are too young, if they know how to type? Isn't this great practice at writing we should encourage?

Verdi Huffman's picture
Verdi Huffman
Instructional Technology and Media Resource Specialist for Jackson County School System

Fourth and fifth graders are definitely not too young to use the collaborative and communication tools provided Google or, for that matter, a host of other Web 2 tools that serve the purpose of building, through practice, 21st century skills (collaboration, communication, Creativity and Innovation and Critical Thinking). The issue, before embarking on any adventure of this type, is to make sure the ground rules have been established concerning: 1) Purpose and 2) Appropriate and Acceptable Use, of whatever tool you are using with them.

Monica's picture

My second graders use google docs. If you hold them accountable and teach clear expectations, there should be no problem. It is a privilege, so if they abuse it, they lose the right to use it. I like it because we can share back and forth.

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