Saturday, May 14, 2016

Create a Library Sign-In With Google Forms

In years past, we have used the old-fashioned clipboard with a paper sign-in/ sign-out sheet to help keep track of students coming in to the library during free flow periods. A few years ago, a mentor showed me how to set up a digital sign-in/ sign-out form using Google Forms. This has been a much better way to keep track of students that come and go during the regular school day. It has also been a nice addition to our end of year report statistics. Let's take a look at how we set this up.

Google Forms

The first step is to create a specific Google Form for your sign-in/ sign-out form. I do this by going to Google Drive and selecting the "Google Forms" option. See the screenshot below.
From Google Drive, select "New" and then "Google Forms"

Selecting "Google Forms" should open a new tab with a blank Google Form. See the screenshot below.

From this page, you can build your form. I named ours LHS Library Sign In 2015-2016 as you can see in the screenshot below.

The Questions I Use

  • I used fill in the blanks for "First Name" and "Last Name". 
  • I used a multiple choice question for "Are you signing IN or OUT of the library?" Students can select "Signing IN" or "Signing OUT". 
  • The final response requires them to answer the question "What teacher sent you?" in a fill in the blank format.
All of these questions are required to be completed before the student can submit the sign-in form. I recommend checking the box that says "Show Link To Submit Another Response" since this gives students an option to reload the form after their sign-in/ sign-out is submitted.

These few questions have worked well for us for many years. I encourage you to customize yours as needed. One question that I am considering adding for next year is "What is your purpose for coming to the library?"

Select A Theme

When your form is complete, you can choose the "Change Theme" option and select an attractive theme for your form. 

A screenshot of our live form for 2015-2016
Go Live

You can view the live form from the editing page. I copy the URL from the live form to whatever devices we will be using for the sign-in/ sign-out process. Students can then begin using the form! If you experience a problem with submissions, make sure your form is set to accepting responses (this is located in the "responses" menu of the editing page). To see your results, you can find the responses in your Google Drive. They should show up in a spreadsheet with a timestamp for each entry. 


Any device that has a browser should work with your new form. We have previously used old Dell laptops running Windows OS. We have also had success using Dell netbooks running Windows OS. Currently, we are using two first generation iPads for our sign-in/ sign-out station in the library. They are too old to run current apps so we repurposed them for this important task!

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  1. Stony, I started using a google sign in at my Primary school last year. I use a drop down menu for grade level and then it goes to a specific grade level page for teacher name. I also added a drop down menu for reason for your visit. I make a new one each 9 weeks so I can track usage for each nine weeks. Even my first graders can handle this way of signing in!

  2. I've been thinking of doing this for over a year. Thanks for sharing this!

  3. Thinking this could also be used as a classroom library book checkout? Hmmmmm.