Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Google Classroom, how do I love thee?

Happy, happy July friends! Apologies for my absence from the blogosphere - I'm living the "Developmental Psychology" chapter here at home with Baby George...who just STOPPED crying (pretty much) since his birth date in April. Good times. With less "Shhhh....shhhhh....please.....shhhh...." - there will be more time to think Psychology and get ready for the school year!
Gratuitous Baby George photo 

Anywhoo - the point of my post. Google Classroom. This classroom app available with Chrome is pretty much the greatest thing ever. Why do I love it so much? It has made my life so, so, so much easier.

How do I use it in my classroom?

1. Classroom management - I post every assignment (Unit FRQs), practice test (any teacher keen on retrieval practice!?), powerpoint, prezi, etc....that I use for easy access for my students. After the first few days of class, I NEVER hear, "I was gone yesterday...what did I miss?" They start knowing RIGHT OFF THE BAT that anything they miss is there for them. And then they stop asking that dreaded questions. Which. Is. Awesome.

2. Paperless Classroom - I have gone away from a lot of paper copies of things and have found that it is much easier for kids to grab things off classroom. Win-win.

3. IEP/504 Accommodations - I have found that a classroom management site like Google allows my students with IEP or 504 accommodations to be more self-sufficient and that it lessens my workload in this situation. Students can go right to the webpage and print off notes or follow along in class on a smartphone or Chromebook. This is huge for kids with note taking needs or for parents who want to help their students organize themselves or study.

4. Parent communication with what's going on in class - I allow parents to join my classroom and for some of them who want to assist their students - this keeps them in the loop. Parent emails have dramatically decreased. (Not that I don't want to hear from parentals.)

5. Students may submit homework or assignments on Classroom and you can grade them digitally. You (literally) never lose a paper. You also know who has their stuff in, and who's out. (Project Runway, anyone?)

6. When I want students to do something in class (a quick web-based activity, a Socrative.com quiz, or when I have them do stations activity days) - I can link up the webpages right to Google classroom. NO MORE will you have to hear "This website doesn't work." Ugh....every teacher's worst nightmare.

I'm sure there are many, many more uses for Google classroom. How do you use it?

----Posted by Amy Ramponi

1 comment:

Kyle Winkler said...

I have used Classroom for AP Psychology and regular Psychology classes. My number one thing to use is Google Forms (https://docs.google.com/forms/u/0/) to create quick reviews. This works well with summative assessment tracking for teacher evaluations. It allows me to give a quiz at the start of class, have the results sent to students minutes later so we as a class can cover the missed concepts. Secondly, It allows you to integrate resources in the "ABOUT" section. I place all of my handouts, PPT's, links to videos, and google document assignments for easy access to all students. Other useful features is the link to Google Calendar. When you create an assignment with a due date it will appear on your Google Calendar. When you have 4 different preps this is very handy.