Chromebooks & Edina Apps
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Edina Apps?Edina Apps is special setup of the popular Google Apps, tailored by Google specifically for Edina. Password protected accounts are managed by the school district (and not by Google) and advertisements are turned off, so the domain becomes a safe place for staff and students to create, collaborate and share ideas. Since the Apps reside 'in the cloud', they are available to students and staff from any computer with Internet access. Staff and students can access their school documents from the lab, the classroom, and from home.
What is Google Drive?Google Drive is an App within Edina Apps that includes word processing, presentation, spreadsheet and drawing tools. A student's Google Drive also stores files much like a My Documents folder.
Can parents access a child's Google Drive?
Parents are encouraged to explore Google Apps with their children by logging in together. It is also okay to ask your child to share his/her Google password with you and to look over the work stored in their Google Drive.
Why use Edina Apps/Google Drive at the elementary level?There are numerous advantages to using Edina Apps with elementary school-age children, including the following:
- Students are more engaged and productive in their work, something desired at all levels.
- Teachers can work more efficiently, monitoring and commenting on student work in real time, and using Google forms to quickly assess understanding or gather input.
- Lost floppy disks and USB drives are a thing of the past since all files are stored 'in the cloud'.
- When work isn't saved or is saved in the wrong place and lost, there's no need to start over. Work saves automatically in a students Google Drive. Students and teachers can even restore earlier versions of documents if desired.
- Several students can work on the same files from different locations at the same time, increasing opportunities for collaborative decision making and problem-solving.
- Working in Edina Apps provides opportunities to help children learn to be safe, respectful and responsible digital citizens in a protected environment, before venturing out into our technology rich world with greater independence.
- The applications and features of Edina Apps provides a rich framework for embedding all of the National Educational Technology Standards for Students.
What is a Chromebook?This year, students in grades 3-5 will be sharing two Chromebook carts at each grade level. That means that classrooms will not have the Chromebooks in the classroom every day, but will have opportunities to use them 2-3 days each week.A Chromebook is a notebook computer that runs only the Chrome browser. The devices are designed to be used while connected to the Internet and support applications that reside on the Web, rather than traditional applications that reside on the machine itself. (Wikipedia)As mobile devices, the Chromebooks offer Concord teachers easier access to technology and greater flexibility in planning. No longer must computer labs be scheduled days in advance, and no longer must class time be spent moving students to the computer lab each time there's an opportunity to use online tools and resources to enhance instruction. Students now have access to a world of information and resources right at their fingertips, right from their desk. That's powerful!Further Reading: The Chromebook: A Great Second Computer
Is it necessary to purchase a Chromebook for student use at home?Because Edina Apps is web-based, it can be accessed from any computer with Internet access. Student use of Edina Apps does not require students to have their own computer or any other personal device. Students will have many opportunities to work in their Edina Apps accounts during the school week.Should you want to purchase a device for your child, Edina Public Schools is continually working to find the most aggressive pricing on devices for our families and staff. This pricing available to 6th and 9th grade families only through the Best Buy eLearning2 Initiative is only available to families of 6th and 9th graders. More information can be found here: https://www.edinaschools.org/Page/389
If my child has a Chromebook or other personal device, can s/he bring it to school?One observation for us as school staff is some students, particularly in 4th and 5th grade, now have their own digital devices. We believe many of these devices can support and enhance student learning at Concord. Teachers in grades 3-5 have created some guidelines around students bringing personal devices to school. Much of this is modeled after the practice of Edina's secondary schools.If your 3rd-5th grade child wishes to bring a device such as a Chromebook or tablet to school, please be sure to review, sign and return to your child's teacher the form available at http://goo.gl/tl4cZ.At this time, cell phones, Smart Phones and iPod Touches are not part of this BYOD learning initiative.
What if my child doesn't have access to a computer at home?Computers are available in the media center for students needing to complete online assignments Monday - Friday until 4:30 pm.
If your child is having trouble accessing or using their Google Drive, here are some things to try:
- Make sure no one else is signed in to a Google Account (for example, Gmail) on that computer.
- Make sure you are using a browser that works well with Google Apps. Internet Explorer and Safari do not always interact well. We use Google Chrome at school. The Chrome browser is a free download available here: http://goo.gl/eizwe
- If you are still unable to access your Google Docs, you may have a password issue. Please contact your teacher.