As great as that is, one of the challenges has been getting easy access to your list of comments. Over time, you may have collected quite a large list of often used comments. Rather than have to type them in each time, it would be much easier if you could simply pull up the list and copy and paste the comments you need.
Certainly there are creative ways to accomplish this, such as having another Google Doc with all the comments listed, and then switching back and forth between that Doc and the one you are grading.
Thankfully though there is now an even easier way to do this. Recently Google announced that Google Keep is now integrated right into Google Docs. That means anything you record in Keep can easily be accessed in a panel in Docs. This can be an easy way to organize all of your comments in Keep, pull them up when in Docs, and copy and paste the ones you need.
See below for details on how to do each step of this process, as well as a short tutorial video.
Tutorial Video (7 minutes)
Direct link to video - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FgV1ypW6ZL8
Step #1 - Creating Your Comment Lists in Google Keep
The first thing you will want to do is to go to Google Keep and create lists with your commonly used comments. You can make multiple lists for different types of projects or for various skills you are assessing.
- Go to Google Keep at https://keep.google.com
- In the "Take a note" text box at the top, click the "New list" button.
- This will let you enter a list of items.
- In the "Title" location type in the name for this list. If you are making several comment lists, then you can name each to match its list, such as "Mechanics", "Grammar", "Usage", and "Style".
- Next in the "List item" section you can type in your individual comments.
- If you already have all the comments typed up elsewhere, such as a Google Doc, you can simply copy and paste the entire list. Keep will make a new list item for each line break in the list you paste.
- Also note that you can include hyperlinks in the comment that take the student to a related webpage or video with additional help resources.
- Finally, click the "three dots" button at the bottom and choose "Add label".
- Because you may have a large amount of notes in Keep, many of which have nothing to do with grading comments, you want to make it easy to find your comments later. This can be done by adding a label to all of your comment lists. Something simple such as "comments" should work fine.
- Click "Done" when finished.
Step #2 - Accessing Your Google Keep Comments in Docs
Now that you have created comment lists in Google Keep, you can access them while grading a student's paper in Google Docs.
- Open the Google Doc you are grading.
- Click "Tools" in the top menu bar.
- Choose "Keep notepad" from the drop-down menu.
- This will open a panel on the right side of the screen with all of your Google Keep notes.
- Since you may have lots of notes that are not grading comments, you can use the search feature to display only your comment lists.
- Click the "Search" button at the top of the Keep panel.
- Type in the label you used for your comment lists, such as "comments".
- Now only your matching comment lists will display.
Step #3 - Adding Your Comments from Keep to Docs
Now that your comment lists are displaying in the Google Keep panel, you can easily copy and paste selected comments as needed.
- Find something in the student's document that needs a comment, and highlight that text to select it.
- Click the "Add a comment" button that pops up to the right of the text.
- This will open a box where you can add your comment to the student.
- In the Google Keep panel, scroll down to find the comment you want to add.
- If needed, click on the title of the comment list to expand all the comments to you can see all of them.
- Use your mouse to click and drag over a comment to select it.
- With it selected, copy the comment (Ctrl and C, or Command and C)
- Now click inside of the comment box in Docs and paste in the copied text (Ctrl and V or Command and V)
- Click the "Comment" button to save the comment in the margin of the Doc.
- Repeat as needed for other portions of the student's document.
Providing feedback is a powerful tool to help students revise and improve their work. There are many options for offering feedback (see my earlier post "Four Fantastic Feedback Tools for Google Docs" for more details).
By using Google Keep, not only can you provide helpful comments and resources to your students, but you can stay organized and save yourself time in the process.
Post by Eric Curts. Bring me to your school, organization, or conference with over 50 PD sessions to choose from. Connect with me on Twitter at twitter.com/ericcurts and on Google+ at plus.google.com/+EricCurts1
Note: For the examples above and in the video, the lists of comments were created by Tim Bowers and can be found on his blog at: http://englishteachertech.blogspot.com/2015/12/essay-grading-comment-bank.html