PDFs in Google Classroom—Your Favorite Accessibility Tool for Reading Will Now Be Your Favorite Classroom Productivity Tool!

by Mary Jo Barry

Boy working on his laptop

A good percentage of your instructional materials are probably PDFs, they are a reliable and usable staple of modern education. Whether you’re delivering instruction in person or virtually, eLearning tools and managing resources digitally is fundamental to any classroom scenario. While PDFs ensure the document you’ve created for your students will look exactly as you intended, PDFs have been traditionally less than accessible and interactive

The good news is that Snap & Read’s PDF Toolkit breaks through those limitations, even some which exist in Google Classroom, to provide you and your students with a truly interactive, accessible productivity tool. It’s so seamless, you’ll probably want to create all of your PDF assignments in Snap & Read! If you’re unfamiliar with Snap & Read, learn more here and start your free trial.

Deliver PDF’s to All Your Students from the PDF Reader Toolkit to Enhance Classroom Collaboration

For the purpose of demonstration, let’s assume you have already placed a PDF in your Google Classroom Drive, in any class or period. Go to that PDF and open it. Once it appears in your Preview Screen, select the Open With drop down, then select Snap & Read PDF Reader from the drop down menu.

Open a PDF in Snap&Read example

Now that you have your PDF in the Snap & Read environment, you are given a variety of ways you can share and assign documents to students. The action of sharing within Snap & Read’s PDF Reader creates an invaluable, invisible link to continued collaboration with your students that goes beyond what you can do in Google Classrooms. You’ll understand that in a minute, first let’s share (or assign) your PDF with students.

The Share Tool

One of the new tools in the Snap & Read PDF Toolkit is the Share Button. Clicking on Share provides you with a variety of ways you can deliver an assignment or worksheet to students.

Share to Google Classrooms—The first option for sharing is through Google Classrooms. The difference is that once you Share to Google Classroom within the PDF Reader, you activate that invisible collaboration link that allows you to Assign a document, your students to Turn In a document and you to Return that document to them graded or with feedback. Sharing with students automatically creates a copy of your master document and places that copy into each students’ assignment folder. Each time you share you’re asked to provide the class or period, a title, given the ability to provide instructions and a due date.

PDF Worksheet example of sharing a pdf in google classroom

Your students open their assignments either within the Snap & Read environment or through Google Classroom, choosing Open With the Snap & Read PDF Reader from the drop down menu. Here’s where the magic happens. Students can add text to label or annotate and answer questions. Using the Annotations Toolbar, students can draw, highlight, paint, insert shapes and connect lines. The BEST part, Snap & Read now auto-saves as students are working. When they’re finished, they simply click the Turn In button in the upper right hand corner, and the assignment is returned to you for review. You and your students have one-click connectivity. In the teacher view, a different button, the Return Button, is available in the same place. Also in the teacher view, you’ll find fun stamps and unique annotation tools you can use for grading and providing feedback to your students.

PDF Worksheet example for annotation with Snap&Read

Share to QR Code—Many younger students have a difficult time navigating files and file URLs. For this purpose, you’ll be able to create and share a QR Code with your students so they have a way to quickly get to the PDF you’re asking them to work on. Another purpose for using Share to QR Code might be for quizzes or tests. Share to QR Code gives you the option of setting permissions for save, print and access dates.

PDF Example of Share to QR Code

Share Link—if you’re working in an LMS (Learning Management System) like Schoology or Canvas, you can use the Share Link option to get students to their assignments quickly.

Signature Tool

The Signature Tool is already beloved by teachers and other members of IEP teams because it allows for greater collaboration among the team members and a way to formalize IEPs with the necessary signatures.

We haven’t shared every single feature but we have tried to give you a good foundation for getting started using Snap & Read. Of course the best way to discover all of the things you can do with Snap & Read is to try it. If you have any questions about how to use your Don Johnston learning tools, contact us anytime. Start your free trial now.


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