Google Classroom is a platform that allows teachers to host online classrooms. Within these classrooms, teachers can provide feedback, handout assignments, post interactive applications, and create a google drive for the classroom. Google Classroom enables teachers to create their own functional website without the need of outside IT assistance. The simple, paperless assignment workflow allows teachers to create, review and mark assignments quickly, all in one place. Students are added to the classroom by their teachers or by entering a course code. Students can post onto the classroom webpage, communicate with their peers through comments and hand assignments in electronically. Students can see all of their assignments on an assignments page, and all class materials are automatically filed into folders in Google Drive. Classroom allows teachers to send announcements and start class discussions instantly. Students can share resources with each other or provide answers to questions on the stream.
Google Classroom creates an environment where blended learning is made possible and easy.
Google Drive – By creating a classroom, a google drive is automatically created for the class. This allows teachers to be able to share Power Points, Excel sheets, and Word documents with students. This will allow students access to all important classroom information when studying.
Google Calendar- When a student is enrolled in multiple google classrooms, the google calendar collects all the due dates and test dates from their courses, and uses the information to create a unique calendar for every student.this is particularly useful because it gives the student something tangible to see their scheduled on. Ultimately, this will help the student manage their time more effectively.
Online Assignments & Quizzes- Through google classroom, assignments can be handed in electronically and quizzes can be taken online. This reduces the amount of paper used in classrooms and reduces the changes of assignments/quizzes being lost by teachers or students.
Grading – Google classroom has a downloadable mark book for teachers which allows teachers to stay more organized and allows for backups to be made in the case that something should happen to the teacher’s copy.
Mobile Application- There’s a phone application that allows students to keep in touch with their classroom assignments and activities. No functionality is lost going from computer to phone, which allows google classroom to remain useful in different platforms.
Communication – Announcements can be posted by teachers to the class stream which can be commented on by students allowing for two-way communication between the teacher and students. Students can also post to the class stream but won’t be as high of a priority as an announcement by a teacher and can be moderated easily. Multiple types of media from Google products such as YouTube videos and Google Drive files can be attached to announcements and posts to share content. Gmail also provides email options for teachers to send emails to one or more students in the Google Classroom interface.
Resources for Getting Started:
App Store Download: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/google-classroom/id924620788?mt=8
Google Chrome Extension: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/google-classroom/mfhehppjhmmnlfbbopchdfldgimhfhfk?hl=en
Resources from Google:
Possible Educational Uses:
- Teachers can prepare all of their classroom assignments and test dates in advance. This helps classroom work stay on track throughout the school year.
- Teachers can post activities and educational tools that can help consolidate material that was learned in class.
- Lesson sets allows teachers to consider their students on an individual basis. Multiple apps and links can be shown that allow students to work on different skills. This forms well rounded students and puts learning at the fingertips of the students.
- Allows for teachers to try flipped classrooms. Lesson sets and YouTube videos in conjunction with each other allows for students to learn a lesson at home, and then complete work and answer questions in class. Google Classroom allows for teachers to customize and try out a flipped classroom. Quizzes can even be added in after completion of a lesson to check a students understanding of the material.
- Students can use the website to stay organized and up to date with assignments and test dates. Since Google Classroom diminishes the need for paper handouts, students are not risking losing important work because it is all online for them to access.
- While there is not a live chat system, students can ask questions and comment on posts on the webpage. This opens up opportunities for collaborative learning outside of allocated classroom time.
- Students can allow post onto the classroom’s drive, which encourages the sharing of study notes come evaluation time, once again allowing for collaborative learning to take place.
Tony Todorova & Devika Lekshmi