In our information age, Google is doing a fantastic job providing us with tools to manage our digital lives. Once mastered, these tools will enhance both student and teacher collaboration and productivity!

To use any google tool you need a google account. If you have a gmail account you already have a google account (and your gmail address and password are your google account username and password). If you don't want gmail you can have a google account without mail (but I highly recommend having a gmail account for it's ability to bridge multiple google services).

iGoogle allows the user to create a custom homepage that aggregates your digital life. My iGoogle page tracks updates to my favorite lesson web sites, integrates my google calendars in one view (Home, Work, Class Assignments, Student Projects), manages my rss feeds, and presents me with a new daily Calvin and Hobbes cartoon.

To create aniGoogle account follow this link and sign in with your gmail or google account.

Probably one of the best uses of iGoogle is google reader, an application that lets you easily see updates to your favorite sites

Google Calendar is a fantastic way to organize all of your calendars and to share calendars. I have a family calendar I share with my spouse, a work calendar that can sync with Outlook Express (which my spouse can also see), and several for my classes that students can collaborate on.

Above is the current Calendar for my Biology classes. Students can click on assignments for details, and easily post the assignment to their own google calendar. Eventually I'll teach them to create and manage team calendars for group projects, which I can easily supervise.