Most of the tools that we talk about each week are ones that I enjoy using, or the ones that I hear teachers talking about that they enjoy using in their classrooms. Beyond being practical, they provide added value to the task at hand. For me, this week’s tool is a superstar in this area: Dropbox. I love Dropbox! To begin, let’s watch this short video on Dropbox in Plain English.
I use Dropbox a lot, both professionally and personally. If I’m going to a meeting and want to be able to quickly reference information from particular documents, I store those documents in my Dropbox and access them from my iPad. I also put recipes, shopping lists, etc. in my Dropbox so that I can access them from my phone.
Your free Dropbox account comes with 2GB of storage space. For the average user, that is a LOT of space! It is enough space to provide some flexibility, too. For example, the media specialist at one of our elementary schools had a video that she needed to get to me. It was too large to send through email, and trying to find the necessary tools to burn a CD is a bit of a pain. The solution? Dropbox! She uploaded the video and I downloaded it – no problems! Since Dropbox allows for setting up shared folders, in which the owner can establish who has access, it provides teachers another option for students submitting papers or audio/video projects!
- Here is a link that has some K-12 lesson plans that incorporate Dropbox (you may have to scroll down to see them)
- Here is more information about using Dropbox with student projects
To sign up for a Dropbox account, go here. You can start exploring the online part of Dropbox, which can be accessed from any computer, even if the program is not installed on your computer. At the top, right hand corner of the page is the sign in link. Click on it and you will see, at the bottom, the link that says Create an Account. Click on that. On the next page, fill in the required information and click on the Create Account button. That will get you in to the online version.
You can also access my public Dropbox folder here. You will only be able to view the one document I have made available to you, but you will get a sense of how it works. Everyone has one public folder (that you can choose to use or not to use), but you also can have numerous private folders that you can choose to share with select people if you want.
So, that is Dropbox! What do you think? Have you used it before? What are your thoughts?