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In this new series, author and educator Aaron Quigley shows you how to stay up to date with the latest educational technology and classroom management techniques. Each week, he'll introduce you to a new tip you can use to be more efficient, and increase student achievement. Aaron covers concepts like the flipped classroom, Common Core Standards, and the role of social media in education. The series also covers a variety of productivity apps, learning management systems, and other technologies, using a project-based approach that simulates the real K–12 or university classroom environment. Check back often for new tutorials, every Monday with Teacher Tips.
There are a variety of ways Dropbox can be used to benefit you as well as your school. If you use it on a personal level, then there are several ways to increase your space. However, once you are logged in to a web browser you can click on the Get Free Space icon in the upper right-hand corner. Here there are a variety of actions in which you can add more space to your Dropbox. One way you can add additional space is for a paid upgrade. Dropbox offers both $10 and $20 a month upgrade options. If your school is using Dropbox, you might want to suggest to an administrator that you upgrade to a business account.
With the business account, you have the ability to use a lot of space shared among a lot of users. As an individual user though, there's certain things you can do that Dropbox will reward you with additional user space, such as referring Dropbox to a friend. If you sent linked invitations to different teachers, and those teachers accepted your link invitations. You're going to get a half a gig or 500 megabytes for each friend you add up to 16 megabytes. Once you go through the basic Dropbox tour, they're going to add an additional 250 megabytes. If you connect your Facebook account you can get 125 megabytes.
The same thing with Twitter. And same thing with following Dropbox on Twitter. Finally, the last thing you can do is if you tell Dropbox why you love them, they'll also award you with 125 megabytes. I've seen a lot of teachers really take the action of trying to get additional friends and family to sign up for Dropbox so that they can increase their storage space. One of the reasons you might want to increase your storage space as an educator is if you're going to personally create lesson plans and share those lesson plans between a home computer and a school computer. Even though I created my Dropbox account on this particular computer and Dropbox helped me install the Dropbox application, I can always go home to my home computer whether it's a Mac or a PC.
I can go to the Dropbox website in a web browser and I can choose to re-download the Dropbox application. Once I install that application on either a Mac or a PC. I can then go ahead and log in. I'm now syncing my files between two different computers. This is a great way for you to go home, create lesson plans and Power Points. Save them to a Dropbox folder. And that way, when you get to school, they're automatically updated to your school computer. You don't have to worry about thumb drives that can be lost. No more emailing documents to yourself. You can simply move them into your Dropbox folder and know that you have access to them anywhere.
Another way you can use Dropbox is on your iPad. Here on my iPad I've already downloaded the free iOS Dropbox application and I've logged in using the username and password that I established when I first set up my Dropbox account. Here I have full access to everything inside my Dropbox folder. For example, if I click on lesson plans. I can see there's a lesson plan document inside of that folder. One way that the iOS application is very powerful is it also allows you to move content from email quickly to your Dropbox account. For example, I'll go ahead and open up my email account.
And here I can see that I have an email that has meeting notes. I can go ahead and click and hold on this icon to bring up a variety of options. And it will automatically bring up all the different applications I could use to open up this file attachment, including Dropbox. So, I'm going to go and select Open In Dropbox. Here, inside my Dropbox folder, it's opened up the file attachment. I now have the opportunity to name it and I can also choose its destination. I'm going to go ahead and put this inside of my Planning Ideas folder. I'll click the Choose button at the bottom of the screen. And then I'll click the Save button in the upper right-hand corner of the attachment box.
So now it's downloaded the meeting notes to the Planning Ideas folder. I have a local copy of it on my iPad. It's also synched it up to my online Dropbox account. So Dropbox has automatically added the meeting notes to the Planning Ideas section on my iPad locally. It's also synced it up to the Dropbox server. If I go back to Dropbox in the web browser, I can now click on Planning Ideas and I can see that my meeting notes are there. Furthermore on my computer I can open up my Dropbox folder. I can go into Planning Ideas and I can see that meeting notes are there as well. Often I'll have students submit assignments via email.
From my iPad, I can then go in and take all of their assignments, quickly add them to my Dropbox folder. And then when I'm on my home computer, I can quickly go into their assignments, make changes, save them, and send them back out. There are countless ways which Dropbox can be used to help organize your school as well as your personal planning process. I hope you have fun finding new ways to integrate Dropbox into your teaching environment. Please join us next week for the next edition of Teacher Tips.
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