Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Google Drive Organization Tips

Do you use Google Drive?  I know when I first started using it, my files were just all in the drive and I hadn't given much thought to organizing them.  Once I started using it often, it became necessary to be more organized.  Yes, Google Drive has an awesome search feature and you can find most any file with just a few keystrokes, but for my sanity I need some order.  I have three tips for you today:  creating folders, coloring the folders, and using those little stars in a handy way.

Creating Folders

Did you know you can create folders within your drive?  You can create them the same way you create everything else, by clicking on the red "New" button at the top left of the page.  Then choose "Folder".  This will create a folder in whatever location you happen to be in when you click the "New" button.  So if you want to create a folder within a folder, you just go into that folder and then hit the "New" button.


After you click "Folder", it will bring up a little window and prompt you to name your folder.  Type in whatever you want the name to be and click the blue "Create" button.

To add files or folders inside the folder, you can do a few things.  If you go into your folder, and then click "New", the new item will be stored in that folder.  To move an existing item or items into the new folder, select the item you wish to move by clicking on it once.  Then you have three options.  The easiest is to click on one of the items and drag it/them into the folder you created in the navigation bar on the left.  Note:  If your folders don't show in the navigation bar, click on the tiny gray arrow next to "My Drive" so that it is pointing down instead of to the right.  This will show the list of folders you have created within your drive.  If you have a folder inside a folder, you may have to click the tiny gray arrow next to other folders to see the folders within.

If you like things simple, that is all you need to know about moving files and folders.  If you like to know all your options - check out the rest of this section.  

Another option is to right click on your file and choose "Move to...".  It will pop up a window for you to choose which folder you want to move the file into.  (You may have to click the tiny gray arrows to expand your folders just like I explained above.)  Once you have selected the folder you want to move your file into, you can click the blue "Move" button at the bottom of the window.  You can also create a new folder from this window.  


The last way is to click on the file and then click the "three dots" button on the upper right hand corner of your screen.  Then choose "Move to...".  This will bring up the Move to window just like before.  

Folder Color

Another great organization tip is to change the color of your folders.  I tend to choose a color for each subject.  For example, all my Language Arts folders are orange, tech stuff is green, and Math is blue.  It just helps me find things faster.  You can use whatever classification you like.

To change the color of a folder, right click on the folder and mouse over the "Change color" option to get a list of colors.  Click on the color you want your folder to become.  Your folder will then change colors.  Fun!


Every file and folder in Drive can be starred.  This is supposed to be so you can select the "Starred" option in the navigation bar on the left and see all the files you have starred.  I don't have much use for this, so I use the star in a different way.  When I have a folder full of student projects, either to grade or to print, I use the star as a way to check off that I've graded and/or printed that file already.  To star a file, simply right click on the file and choose "Add star".  You can right click on an item that is starred and click "Remove star" if needed.  This has helped me not to have to filter through all of my printed documents to see which ones I still need to do, or search my desk for the sticky note I wrote the list on.

Well, I hope you found at least one of these tips to be helpful!  Check back soon for more handy tech tips.  Thanks for visiting TeachingTechNix!

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