Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Annotate Google Docs Via The Google Classroom iPad App

A lovely teacher reached out to me asking if there was an easy way to annotate directly onto a Google Doc using an iPad. We had used some different techniques to do this in the past, but they required a few too many steps including having to convert the Google Doc into a PDF first, then importing it into a different app, and then finally being able to annotate. It worked, but there were a few too many steps which could become time-consuming especially when a teacher has several students and several documents to annotate. We wanted something more streamlined. After searching around and reaching out to some of my PLN friends, I started playing around with Google Classroom as a solution. What was discovered was that in Google Classroom, if teachers have students submit assignments in Google Doc format, the teacher can open the Doc on their iPad and annotate on it! It's a seamless solution for both teachers and their students. 

Watch this short video: 

Annotate a Google Doc via the Google Classroom iPad App

Steps to Annotate a Google Doc via the Google Classroom iPad App

Step 1: Open the Classroom app on your iPad

Step 2: Open the assignment you created for students to submit their Google Doc

Step 3: Click Student Work

Step 4: Click on your student's name to open the Google Doc they turned in

Step 5: After the document opens, click the pencil on the top-right corner

Step 6: Your annotation tools are on the bottom. 

Starting from the right...
  • Typing tool "A" 
  • Highlighter (different color options) 
  • Marker (different widths and color options) 
  • Pen (different widths and color options) 
  • Eraser
  • Select tool that lets you grab what you annotate to move it around the document

Step 7: You can pinch the page on your iPad to zoom in and out of the page, then start annotating! 

Step 8: When you're done annotating, click Save on the top-right. Your edits will be saved as a PDF. 

Step 9: This is what it looks like from the student's side. They'll open the assignment and see a PDF under the Google Doc they turned in. When they open the PDF, they'll see their document with the teacher's annotations. 


  1. This was literally life-changing!! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE! Combining traditional with the technology was a game-changer for me. It makes it so much faster to provide feedback on digital essays or written assignments! THANK YOU AGAIN FOR YOUR SUPPORT AND GUIDANCE WITH THIS!!!!!

    1. Thank YOU!! :)!!! You were my inspiration and reason I created this. Tech becomes so much more meaningful when it makes a difference for you and your kiddos! Thankful you reached out to me and I'm so happy it helped you. Hope it can help others, too!