Google Draw in the English Classroom

By many, Google Drawing is considered the red-headed step-child of the Google Suite: at best, it is a topic of interest, but most of us have never bothered to click that “Create” button and give it a try.

For me, Google Drawing brings the possibility of mindmaps and physical manipulation into the English environment without the overwhelming visual stimuli of Glogster.  That said, I have to offer the caveat that Google Draw does not work on iPads, though a web app called Lucidchart uses our Google account logons and allows students to collaborate on documents, though it does not have the stability to host large numbers of students on the same document.

While Google Draw is useful for any sort of basic drawing or concept-mapping, I find it particularly useful because I can create a student template with instructions for the assignment, then ask students to make a copy or distribute the copies using the Doctopus script.  This step of creating the template cuts down on “busy work” time and allows students to focus on the higher-order levels of thinking, including synthesizing information, creating relationships, and evaluating information because they are no longer responsible for inputting the data.

Some recent uses include:

Additionally, I could imagine using Google Drawing to create:

  • Timelines of events
  • Show relationships between key terms or ideas
  • Mapping out project roles for Project-Based Learning assignments

Hopefully, this post has inspired you to bring that red-headed step child into your happy Google family. Happy Drawing!


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