When the ball dropped and we rang in the brand new year, I don’t think any of us had “learn an entirely new set of tech skills” on our list of resolutions. Yet, here we are, picking up little tips and tricks and going pro as we navigate working from home and virtual schooling. How exciting for our resumes?
The new school year presented several hurdles that weren’t covered in the volumes of emails and help docs our county shared, and as we’ve kicked off week two in this new format, I’ve found that the one hurdle that continues to trip us up is printing from our new devices.
Let me know if this is a regular conversation in your home, “Mom, I need to make a copy of this Schoology document and save it to my Drive so I can fill it in electronically, but when I do I can’t see my teacher and I’m getting lost.”
Can we please just take a moment to put out into the universe how much we love and appreciate our educators? These underappreciated, underpaid people are saints!
It took some time and a bunch of clicking around to figure out a solution to this issue, and what works for us is Google Cloud Print. This has been a life-saver for my boys, who are using tiny county-issued Chromebooks to attend school. When they open a file in Drive and attempt to work on it AND split their screen to simultaneously attend their Zoom meeting, their Drive file is minimized to a size that even their fresh, young eyes can’t work with. We print hard copies and they work from those with a full-sized Zoom screen, instead.
What is Google Cloud Print? It’s a printing service that connects your home printer with other devices over your Wi-Fi. Your computer must have the Chrome browser installed, and the accounts you provide access to your printer must be logged-in to the Google Account you share access with in order to print.
Here’s how to set up Google Cloud Print for your family:
- In Chrome, visit the Google Cloud Print website
- Click the “GO TO MY CLOUD PRINT” button
- Click the “Add a Cloud-Ready Printer” link on the left-hand side of your screen and search for your printer to ensure that it’s Cloud compatible
- Open up a new tab in Chrome and type chrome://devices in the address bar and press enter
- Under “New Devices,” find your printer and click “Manage”
- In the “Confirm registration” box that appears, click “Register”. Complete the registration process.
- Open a new tab to your Google Cloud Print console and click the “Printers” link on the left-hand side
- Your printer should now be listed as available for Cloud Printing
- Select your printer and click the green “Share” button to invite users to access it
- In the “Invite people” box, type in your child’s Google account address as provided by your school and make sure their access is set to “Can print”
You’ll see that some printer brands have their own instructions for setting-up their devices with Google Cloud Print, so my instructions above may not work for every printer. Ours is a Dell and was set-up fairly easily using the steps above. Here’s a link to Google Cloud Print Help if you run into any issues getting set-up.
Your students can now open their files in any of the Google Suite programs and send jobs to your home printer over your Wi-Fi. This has been a tremendous help to our family and has made virtual school just a little bit easier for our students.
Hope this is helpful! Do you have other tips and tricks that have helped your family jump a hurdle? Do you struggle with something and need help? Did you get your students set-up with Google Cloud Print? How’s school going so far? I want to hear it all.
Have a great day,