D - Drive, Docs, and Dropbox
There are many cloud storage option available for teachers, but fortunately for the theme of the series, the big three all start with the letter "D". With luck on our side, let's take a look at how Drive, Docs (by Google) and Dropbox open a world of possibilities for teachers.
Drive is a cloud file sharing and hosting service provided by Google that makes it incredibly easy to share and host lesson plans and materials. Teachers can store a wide array for content from word documents and PDFS to images, videos and audio. Teacher then can make these materials accessible to anyone with a web link and internet connections.
Docs is part of the Drive ecosystem along with other tools like spreadsheets, presentations, and forms. In short, Docs is text editing software that allows the creator to write, share (via a link) and sync documents with readers and/or fellow collaborators. Teachers can make anything from a book to worksheets to class rules. Docs also makes it easy for students to orginate and share their own work.
Dropbox is a cloud-based file hosting and sharing service that makes it easy for educators to distribute, access and backup lesson materials. Users have two options to hosting files. One option is to create an account online and then upload content to the cloud. The second more popular option is to download Dropbox to the user's comptuers and then store files there. Dropbox then sync the files on the user's computer with replica files online. Whenever a change is made on a user's computer, it is updated online so both version match. Users can also share links to files and folders of content online so any materials can be easily accessible via a link.
All three file sharing tools allow the creator to set restictions on the content. Conten can be just viewable on the web, downloadable, or editable depending on the settings provided by the creator.