5 ways to up your maths game with Google Workspace tools

During 2019 I worked with over 1,700 teachers and there was overwhelmingly one question that I was asked most often, “How can I use digital technologies in my maths program?”

It seems that many teachers feel confident integrating meaningful digital activities and tasks into their literacy and inquiry programs, but they don’t feel quite the same way when it comes to maths. This is understandable, as maths should be a hands on experience with lots of physical manipulatives and practical activities.However, there are also plenty of opportunities for us to include some valuable digital moments if we think about our ‘why’.

So why would we use a digital tool in our maths program?

To me, the answer to this question includes a couple of reasons – it allows us to provide student choice and agency along with providing the means to capture evidence of student thinking and strategising.

[bctt tweet=”Are you using #digital tools in your #maths program? They’re a great way to capture Ss thinking🤔 #edtech #utbPD #GoogleEDU”]

One of my favourite platforms to create these digital opportunities is the G Suite toolbox. Many schools are now using G Suite for Education and already have everything they need to design meaningful, purposeful and relevant maths activities for their students.

Here are five ideas to get you started;

Number one: Use Google Docs to create hyperdocs

A hyperdoc, described as ‘a Google Doc that contains an innovative lesson for students – a 21st Century worksheet, but much better’, is a fantastic way to provide your students with some agency over their learning. It enables you to provide them with a structure for self regulating their maths progression and choosing the activities they need to do.

[bctt tweet=”Use #Google Docs to create tasks that allow for Ss agency in your #maths program #edtech #hyperdocs #utbPD #GoogleEDU!”]

With a hyperdoc, you typically collate a series of resources, texts, lessons, and activities based around a theme. For example, you may be focusing on solving linear equations but you know you have students at varying levels of proficiency. A hyperdoc would allow some of your students to work more independently while you workshop with those students who need it.

It’s important to consider the purpose of your hyperdoc before you begin to create it – is it intended to be just for one task, for a unit, or will it even be more inclusive than that?

There are many hyperdoc templates readily available on the Internet that you can use to save you reinventing the wheel. But remember – no two classes or students are ever the same so it’s important to include within the hyperdoc what is important and necessary for your audience.

Often a hyperdoc will begin with a hook or some inspiration. If video is your choice of tool for this it is possible to insert one within a Google Doc by using a hack that utilises Google Drawings. You can read how to do it here.

This example was created by taking a template shared online and changing the parts that would make it more applicable to my students. Remember, it’s important to acknowledge the original creator of the Doc.

You can find some helpful collections of maths hyperdocs on this Padlet here or on the HyperDoc site here. This collection has some useful ones also.

Number two: Use Google Drawings to create game boards

Often when my students went off to play maths games I actually had no idea whether they actually played the game or not. If they had played it, I wasn’t sure if they had used efficient strategies to calculate answers or if they had been successful with their thinking.

One day, with a few quick easy steps, I turned one of the games into a digital version using Google Drawings. What a game changer! 😀Instantly I had evidence of their thinking and could follow up with students if I needed to.

Here’s what I did:

  • I used the Google Keep app on my phone to snap a photo of the game board (this way I didn’t have to transfer it from my phone to my laptop – it was automatically there!).
  • I copied the image to a Google Drawing,resized it and cropped it to the size I wanted.
  • I used shapes with a transparent fill and colour outline for the counters.
  • Using the ‘off space’ around the canvas I created 2 text boxes, one for each player to do their recording in
  • The final game board was shared through Google Classroom so each student got their own copy of it.
  • One student then shared their copy with a buddy so they were both editing the same one, which the owner then submitted back through Google Classroom

[bctt tweet=”Digital #maths game boards are not only fun, they capture evidence of Ss thinking #edtech #teachers #maths #utbPD #GoogleEDU”]

Number three: Use Google Sheets conditional formatting for maths quizzes

If you use Twitter as a PLN (and if you don’t, maybe consider starting as it’s one of the most valuable forms of PD around!) you may well be a follower of Alice Keeler who often says, “The answer is a Google Sheet!” She believes there is no job a spreadsheet can’t do! I myself am not so sure, but I do know they are fantastic for creating maths activities that give students instant feedback in an engaging way.

By using the conditioning formatting rules on a Google Sheet, we can create an activity for the students whereby if they answer the questions correctly an image appears. It doesn’t matter if this makes no sense to you – there are lots out there already that you can tap into and you never know, the more you use them the more likely you are to give it a go making up your own. Better still, what a great opportunity for your students to create them and share with other students. Not only will they be practising their maths skills, they’ll also be ticking off some of the Digital Technology Progress Outcomes!

This template is a great place to begin

Number four: Use Google Slides to create templates to scaffold thinking

Google Slides is one of my favourite tools when it comes to creating purposeful and relevant maths tasks for students within G Suite for Education. There are just so many ways you can utilise this tool, and using the master slides feature is one of the lesser-known gems.

Using the master slide view allows you to create objects, assets or text on a slide that the students can’t move or edit.

You can create scaffolds for thinking and templates for gathering evidence of thinking. Here’s an example of what a journal could look like – students add a new slide as they need it and the template is already set out for them with spaces allocated for adding screenshots, text boxes for them to add their thinking and a quick visual to show how they felt about the task.

To use the master slide follow the steps explained in this blog post here.

[bctt tweet=”Using the master slide with #GoogleSlides lets you create scaffolds for your Ss thinking! #edtech #maths #teachers #utbPD #GoogleEDU”]

Number five: Use Google Collections to curate useful images

My final tip for this post is to use Google Collections to curate collections of images that you can then use to create tasks, or even share with students to use in their tasks.

Many people are unaware of this feature, yet it’s one of the best ways to collect and save images from the web. This post here explains the process and how to save the images you have collected.

The images can then be used for tasks that encourage students to look for maths in the real world – what angles can they find in a photo, how many different shapes are there, what distance do they estimate there is between two points in an image, how many items do they estimate might be in an image? There are all sorts of activities you can do.

You could also create a Google Collection that would be helpful when creating flipped learning tutorials for students or providing a resource for students to reflect back on.

Collections are an awesome way to save time repeatedly searching for images on the same topic. Check it out if you’ve not used it before – I’m sure you’ll love it!

So there we are – five ways to get started with G Suite tools in your maths program. Let us know how you get on – we’d love you to share what you do in your classroom.

Related Post

How well do you use the
Apple Apps Google Workspace Microsoft 365
tools in your workplace?

Find out if you’re working with the tools OR if you’ve got the
tools working for you.

What Industry Are You In?

Using Apple Apps, Google Workspace or Microsoft 365?

What Type of user are you?

🫣 Entry User | 🤹 Skilled User | 👑 Elite User

Take the quiz to find out. 

Privacy Policy

Using Technology Better Privacy Commitment


We hold the privacy of your personal information in the highest regard.

Using Technology Better regards customer privacy as an important part of our relationship with our customers. The following privacy policy applies to all Using Technology Better users, and conforms to Internet privacy standards.

This policy will be continuously assessed against new technologies, business practices and our customers’ needs.

If you have questions or concerns regarding this statement, you should first contact the support team on our Contact Us Page.

Collection of Information

In order to use the Using Technology Better website, we may require information from you in order to provide the best service possible.

All correspondence may also be collected and stored, particularly in regard to sales, support and accounts, including Email.

Any information collected by Using Technology Better is collected via correspondence from you or your company. This may be via the telephone, Email, mail, fax or directly through our website.

Visitors and customers of japan.usingtechnologybetter.com will have their information shared back to DAIWABO INFORMATION SYSTEM CO., LTD. and DIS Service & Solution Co., Ltd.

Use of Collection Information

Any details collected from Using Technology Better customers is required in order to provide you with our

products and/or services, and a high level of customer service.

Correspondence is recorded in order to provide service references, and to assist in our staff development.

Web Site Use Information

Similar to other commercial Web sites, our Web sites utilize a standard technology called “cookies” (see explanation below, “What Are Cookies?”) and web server log files to collect information about how our Web site is used.

Information gathered through cookies and Web server logs may include the date and time of visits, the pages viewed, time spent at our Web site, and the Web sites visited just before and just after our Web site.

Storage of Collected Information

The security of your personal information is important to us. When you enter sensitive information (such as credit card numbers) on our website, we encrypt that information using secure socket layer technology (SSL).

When Credit Card details are collected, we simply pass them on in order to be processed as required. We never permanently store complete Credit Card details.

We follow generally accepted industry standards to protect the personal information submitted to us, both during transmission and once we receive it.

If you have any questions about security on our Website, you can email us at <ContactEmail>.

Access to Collected Information

If your personally identifiable information changes, or if you no longer desire our service, you may correct, update, delete or deactivate it by emailing us at <ContactEmail>.


If you purchase a product or service from us, we may request certain personally identifiable information from you.

You may be required to provide contact information such as:



Postal address

Your school or organisation

Financial information (such as credit card number, expiration date, name on card, card billing address).

We use this information for billing purposes and to fill your orders. If we have trouble processing an order, we will use this information to contact you.


Using Technology Better uses personally identifiable information for essential communications, such as


Accounts information

Critical service details.

We may also use this information for other purposes, including some promotional Emails.

If at any time a customer wishes not to receive such correspondence, they can request to be removed from any mailing lists by contacting support.

You will be notified when your personal information is collected by any third party that is not our agent/service provider, so you can make an informed choice as to whether or not to share your information with that party.

Third Parties

Using Technology Better may at its discretion use other third parties to provide essential services on our site or for our business processes.

We may share your details as necessary for the third party to provide that service.

These third parties are prohibited from using your personally identifiable information for any other purpose.

Using Technology Better does not share any information with third parties for any unknown or unrelated uses.

What Are Cookies?

A cookie is a very small text document, which often includes an anonymous unique identifier. When you visit a Web site, that site’s computer asks your computer for permission to store this file in a part of your hard drive specifically designated for cookies.

Each Web site can send its own cookie to your browser if your browser’s preferences allow it, but (to protect your privacy) your browser only permits a Web site to access the cookies it has already sent to you, not the cookies sent to you by other sites.

Browsers are usually set to accept cookies. However, if you would prefer not to receive cookies, you may alter the configuration of your browser to refuse cookies.

If you choose to have your browser refuse cookies, it is possible that some areas of our site will not function as effectively when viewed by the users.

A cookie cannot retrieve any other data from your hard drive or pass on computer viruses.

How Do We Use Information We Collect from Cookies?

As you visit and browse our Web site, the site uses cookies to differentiate you from other users. In some cases, we also use cookies to prevent you from having to log in more than is necessary for security.

Cookies, in conjunction with our Web server’s log files, allow us to calculate the aggregate number of people visiting our Web site and which parts of the site are most popular. This helps us gather feedback to constantly improve our Web site and better serve our clients.

Cookies do not allow us to gather any personal information about you and we do not intentionally store any personal information that your browser provided to us in your cookies.


We reserve the right to disclose your personally identifiable information as required by law and when we believe that disclosure is necessary to protect our rights and/or comply with a judicial proceeding, court order, or legal process served on our Website.


Links on the Using Technology Better site to external entities are not covered within this policy. The terms and conditions set out in this privacy statement only cover the domain name of usingtechnologybetter.com

Changes to Privacy Policy

If we decide to change our privacy policy, we will post those changes to this privacy statement, and other places we deem appropriate so that you are aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it.

We reserve the right to modify this privacy statement at any time, so please review it periodically. If we make material changes to this policy, we will not use the personal information you have submitted to us under this Privacy Policy in a manner that is materially inconsistent with this Privacy Policy, without your prior consent

Delivery Policy

Most goods are digitally delivered instantly via email.  Our services may be delivered either via an online medium or live in person.

For our online delivery see below.  For services delivered live onsite, please refer to our speaker agreement form which is emailed to you on confirmation of booking.

Refund Policy

We do not offer refunds or returns unless we cannot supply goods or services or the goods or services are not delivered as promised.

Australian law is the governing body for all work, goods and services supplied by Using Technology Better.

Marketing Release

Using Technology Better (UTB) may film, record, and photograph me (the results of which are the “Recordings”). UTB may also incorporate into any production(s) any separate content (e.g., quotes, testimonials, biographical information, profiles, photos, videos, sound recordings, artwork, etc.) I provide to UTB or approve in writing (“Materials”).


I grant to UTB an irrevocable, perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free license to, in its sole discretion, (i) edit, translate, and modify the Recordings and the Materials, (ii) attribute the Recordings and Materials to me by my name, age, and city and state of residence, (iii) incorporate the Recordings and the Materials into content to promote UTB, its programs, or products (“Content”), and (iv) publicly use, distribute, reproduce, create derivative works from, and perform/display the Content, and any excerpts thereof, in any language.

2. No Compensation.

I grant this permission without any financial or other obligation of any nature.


For any issues or concerns please contact us