Question: How to share PDF files with kids that don’t know anything about computers

I’m developing some lessons with MS-Word then converting them to PDF forms with Adobe Acrobat Pro. I had hoped to use Google Drive to share these files with students who have almost zero knowledge of computers but apparently Google Drive doesn’t allow Adobe Acrobat to open files without first downloading them. The best solution I’ve come up with so far is to use LINE chat and attach files to a chat session. LINE also supports video but not screen sharing.

Ideally I’d like to have a shared folder on my desktop that’s synced with a folder on my student’s desktop. Dropbox, Google Drive, SharePoint all seem too complicated. My students don’t even know what a “file” is. I don’t want them to have to open a new account somewhere. They forget their passwords all the time. What technologies do you recommend for sharing and editing PDF files with students in primary school?


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2 comments

  1. metermade

    |Author

    Can definitely be tricky, especially cause you’re not with students, seeing their screens.

    How are you currently syncing your shared folder with the student’s desktop folder? To me Google Drive/Dropbox seem less complicated, but I guess I’m not aware of what platform you’re using the would sync your desktop with a students desktop.

    Since you seem to be using Google Drive for a part of this, there are two routes for Google Drive.

    * If you open each Word doc in Google Drive, you have an option to convert it to a Google Doc, which should be shareable to students. This is tricky cause the formatting messes up.
    * Alternatively, students should be able to open PDFs directly in the broswer via Google Drive. If they click on the file, it should appear without having to download anything: [https://support.google.com/drive/answer/2423485](https://support.google.com/drive/answer/2423485)

  2. Calliophage

    |Author

    I’m sure you’ve already thought of this so apologies if this is redundant, but just to make sure, have you considered using Google Forms instead? It sounds like what you want is just a fillable form, in which case GForms will be a lot easier for primary age kids to grasp and involves no uploading or downloading of files. You can convert a GDoc to a GForm (I know it’s not Word, but it’s close enough for most purposes), or the GForms editor supports embedding images, video, etc. pretty smoothly.

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