Color Code and Organize Your Google Drive

August 11, 2016

Color Code and Organize Your Google Drive

August 11, 2016
Color Code and Organize Your Google Drive
It seems like I rely more and more on my Google Drive each year of my teaching. I upload my favorite resources to folders, create docs for my students to use in Google Classroom, store maps for Social Studies, upload photos of our Science experiments…there is just so much you can do with the drive. And I really love how easy it is to organize your files.
But, truth be told, I was never a big fan of the layout and colors. 
A sea of gray folders is never really helpful when you are a busy teacher trying to find docs on the fly. And, while you can colorize the folders, there is only so much control over the order they can be displayed.
Or is there?

I’ve had my folders colorized for a few years, but I learned something new. It actually turns out you can number your folders to keep them in the order you would like them to appear (this is a little tip I learned from my sister over at Fashion Craze Learning Days). After doing a little research, I learned you can also include some fun numbers, to make those folders really stand out:
And it gets better.
You can even include some basic symbols to organize those folders even further:
Would you like to try? It’s very easy to do…simply follow the steps below:
1. First you will need to open a tab for this fantastic site: Copy Paste Character. There is a drop down menu at the top. We’ll be using the numbers first, so select Numerals from the list.
2. Open another tab to access your Google Drive. You can either make adjustments to the folders you already have, or start from scratch. If you are creating a new folder, right-click and choose New Folder and name it:
3. Your new folder will show as the default gray color. There are two ways to change the color. You can right-click for a popup menu, or double click the folder and choose from the drop down menu. Select Change Color:
4. Once you have chosen the colors for your folders, choose the order in which you would like them to be displayed. This is where the numbers will come into play. Since the default sorts are alphabetical (ascending and descending) or last modified or opened, the numbers give you a bit more control over your display.
Navigate to the Copy Paste Character site and choose the number style you would like (I went with the larger numbers in black):
Clicking on the number should automatically copy it to your clipboard. Head back to your Google folder. Right-click or use the drop down menu to choose Rename:
Go to the beginning of your folder name and paste the number:
Continue until you have numbered all of your folders. Please note: this will only work for numbers up to 9…once you choose 10 and above it will start to display out of order, 1, then 10, then 2, etc. I like to use subfolders, so I kept my major subjects to nine folders:
You can display these as thumbnails (shown above) or as a list:
5. Now to add subfolders and symbols! For my subfolders, I kept the same color as the subject and chose some basic icons to go with units/topics. We have three major writing units (Opinion, Narrative, and Informational) and I started setting up folders for other resources:
In my Math folder, I created subfolders for our Math Rotation materials, as well as numbered folders for our math units (I used the smaller black numbers for these units, so they would stand out from the large numbers used in the subject area folders):
To do this, click on a subject area folder you have created. Right-click or choose the red New button to set up a new folder. Follow the same steps as we did for the numbers, but this time choosing symbols to match your folders from the Copy Paste Character website:
And that’s it! There is a nice selection of symbols from the website to choose from…though you may have to get creative with some of your folder symbols (I so desperately wanted a book symbol, but could not find one!). There is a chance other symbol sites may work as well, but many times the symbols do not show up in different browsers. I did a lot of testing and found these symbols to work best for my folders.
I hope this is of some help to those of you looking to color code and organize your Google Drive!

Would you like to try some more colorful organization for your Google Drive? Keeping a grade book in Google Sheets has made record keeping MUCH easier for me this school year. With color-coded tabs and icons, I can quickly find the exact grading page I need. And the best part? These templates automatically average grades as they are entered…it’s been such a time-saver! Please click the image below to learn more:

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  • I’ve been reading, watching, listening, and trying to learn. I realize this alone is not enough. I want to speak but I am always afraid my words are not the right ones. But even if speaking is not my strength, I know I can take more action and this is what I will do. I'm grateful for everyone who is sharing actions we can take right away.
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Thank you to @thedesignerteacher for sharing this image...Sarah has shirts with the same design and all proceeds go to @aclu_nationwide. #blacklivesmatter
  • How’s it going with your classroom cleanup? I had a two hour block the other day and will have a whole day next week to do more. It’s surreal. Hope you are all doing well ❤️
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#distancelearning #remotelearning #missmystudents #missmyclassroom #iteachfourth #teachersfollowteachers #teachersofinstagram
  • Not one thing worked today. Not zoom. Not google meet. Two weeks to go and I am missing my classroom more than ever!!!
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How much distance learning do you have left??
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#distancelearning #remotelearning #notmyfavorite #missmystudents #andmyclassroom
  • Google drive shortcuts at a glance!
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I know I shared these in a pdf the other day but I wanted to show another way to display these little time-savers.
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I split them into two files and resized them so they could stay at the top of my drive as a reference point...no need to open anything, just a couple of mini reference charts!
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If you would like to try the same, please click the link in my profile to grab a copy or visit: bit.ly/shortcutsataglance
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They are in one google slide together. To view them separately, make a second copy of the file and delete the first slide. Now you will have two google slides you can keep at the top of your drive.
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I hope you can use them! I can't get enough of them!!
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#googledrive #distancelearning #distanceteaching #iteachfourth #iteach4th #iteach456 #teachersfollowteachers #teachersofinstagram
  • I'm LOVING these time-saving shortcuts for google drive!
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I compiled some of my favorite shortcuts that have eliminated a lot of double-clicking on items...as well as right-clicking and selecting from a drop down menu. These things can get pretty tedious when you are trying to move quickly, right? Especially with the amount of time we are working in google drive during distance learning!
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The first set of shortcuts will work on anything you have selected in your drive. So if you select a doc, you can simply click one of these letters/symbols and be on your way.
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The second set features a faster way to open up new docs, slides, sheets, and more. For these shortcuts, simply click the shift key along with the letter shown in the chart. So much faster than the traditional way!
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I made a pdf of these shortcuts...you can save the file in your drive or even print a copy if you would like. Please see the link in my profile or visit: bit.ly/googledriveshortcutschart
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I hope they help save you some time during distance learning!
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Which one do you think will be the most handy? My two favorites right now are the renaming shortcut and the share shortcut!!
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#googledrive #googledocs #distancelearning #distanceteaching #iteachfourth #iteach456 #iteach4th #teachersfollowteachers #teachersofinstagram
  • Who else loves a good shortcut??
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I seriously LOVE shortcuts. It may sound like such a small thing, but a one-click shortcut saves SO much time rather than double-clicking or right-clicking and selecting from a drop down menu.
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But just one little click? Then you are on your way in an instant!
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And these google shortcuts are just that...lovely, one-click shortcuts!
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These are some of my favorites I started using last year...and now with all this distance learning I have found them to be so valuable as I navigate my google drive:
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Open a folder or document: click letter o
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Rename a folder or document: click letter n
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Preview a document: click letter p
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Share a document: click the dot symbol
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And that's all! Select any folder or document you are working on, click on of these letters/symbols, and you are on your way to the next step in your work!
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I have a few more shortcuts to share and would love to put them together in a document that can be saved/printed...can anyone use this? Let me know and I will share it tomorrow!
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Happy shortcutting!! And, more importantly, happy weekend my friends!
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#googledrive #googledocs #teachertimesaver #distancelearning #iteachfourth #iteach4th #iteach456 #teachersfollowteachers #teachersofinstagram

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