Welcome to the New Year! You know how the New Year always seems so shiny and, well, new? And you make all these resolutions for change…but many times forget all about them and sink back into your old routine within a few weeks? Let’s fix that by engaging in a weekly challenge to jumpstart our teaching life! Each week we will look at a different aspect of teaching and quick wins for the classroom! This week, we will be looking at how to organize our Google Drives!
Help me organize my Google Drive!
Step 1: Setting aside time
This is not a sprint, it is a marathon! It took time for the mess to accumulate, so it is going to take at least a few hours to a few days for it to clear up (depending on your situation). If you have a large block of time that you can dedicate to cleaning up your Drive (and if you work better that way), then plan for that. If you work better in 20-minute chunks during your planning period a few times a week, do that (that’s how I work!). Consider the Pomodoro (link) method.
(Affiliate Link to my favorite Time Timer Pomodoro: https://amzn.to/3IbHQIp)
Step 2: Internal Organization–Categories/Folders
Now that you have figured out when you’re going to work, consider how you are going to organize your folders. Do you use a textbook and most of your material is unit or chapter based? Then maybe you want to make chapter folders and go from there. How about IEPs or other student information such as tracking data? Maybe create an easy-to-access folder for that? What about all the information you get from department or school meetings? A folder for those items would be helpful too! Photos or audio files for lessons? Sub plans? Backup files? All of those could get their own folder. Write down the folders that you would like to use to organize your Google Drive.
Step 3: Start Organizing Files!
At this point, you know when you want to organize and the categories/folders that you are going to use to organize the files. Now you can start moving files during your designated organization time! Don’t know how to move files? One simple way to move files is to drag and drop, which is mostly what I’ll be doing in this video, but if you need more guidance, watch this video!
Continue moving files until you have moved the vast majority of your files or all of them! You may find yourself creating new folders as you go because you realize that some documents need a new home.
Remember, this is probably the longest step. Take your time to do it right. And if you don’t, don’t fret. Everything is still “googleable” in your Google Drive. Meaning, you can still search for different files!
Bonus #1: Don’t Forget About Your Computer!
If you’re anything like me, then you’re a packrat when it comes to the Download and Document folders on the computer. Take a scan of them. Is there anything that you can organize into your Google Drive folders and clear up memory on your computer? Remember, Google Drive is awesome because it is cloud storage, meaning that as long as you have access to the internet, you can access those files anywhere you go.
Pro-Tip/Bonus #2: Naming Conventions
Congrats! You’ve made it to step 5! This step isn’t necessary, but for those of us with a touch of OCD (that’s me!), you can consider giving your files a naming convention. For example, if you use a textbook and every chapter has a vocab sheet that you give to your kiddos, consider keeping the naming style consistent, such as U1 Vocab List.doc. U1 stands for Unit 1. Therefore when I go to look for Unit 3, I know that the name is most likely U3 Vocab List.doc. And Voilà, you are done (or hopefully done-ish and happy with the results!)
If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me! You can email me but honestly, just follow me on Instagram and DM me there!
Un abrazo enorme,
Download: Want to skip the steps? Then download this cheatsheet for organizing your Google Drive!