Saturday, January 9, 2016

The Power of Google Classroom as a teacherleader

The Power of Google Classroom

Google Classroom is simply a godsend.  As a teacher leader,  I am a teacher and an ELA coach to 6 teachers.  Google Classroom is a tool that I easily utilize for both positions.  As an ELA Coach, I can schedule meetings, share professional development and request feedback and other responses using Google forms.  As a high school AP teacher, I need a way to interact with my students easily. The writing demands and the constant contact require both a way to receive papers and a way to provide assignments, feedback and various messages.

As an ELA Coach,  Google Platform uses the power of Google Apps to power our department. Anything in Google Drive can very easily be shared through Google Classroom as a private or public post.  Private communication is enabled within the department. I also like that teachers can more easily return to a suggested resource. Our school email accounts can quickly become overwhelming.
Google Classroom allows us to concentrate only on departmental work.

As an AP English teacher, Google Platform provides a secure way to provide access to assignments and a secure way to receive the return of assignments. The very best part of Google classroom is the ability to provide feedback DURING the writing process rather than merely AFTER it is turned in.
When students access and create an assignment during class, I can immediately begin to click on papers and provide feedback and encouragement to the students!  Students are always surprised the first time they see my icon on their Google doc. I can type on their document and help along the way.
Communication in this way is much more private than oral conversations during writing workshops. Once students submit their papers to me I have full ownership and they can no longer edit their paper. Google keeps track of all changes and the date and time of those changes, just in case there should be parental concerns. Most recently, we learned the power of sharing one set of Google Slides and allowing each student to create their own slide. They can all provide feedback and encouragement to each other safely within Google Classroom. As the teacher, I can see all the work easily.

Additionally, Google Classroom allows me to post messages such as essay contests, ACT dates, opportunities, and last minute school reminders. The students receive notifications via their phones or email regarding each post within Google Classroom. Students can respond to the whole class or me privately, but cannot privately message another student.

Having tried numerous LMS over the years, I currently find Google Classroom to be preferable due to the ability to connect not only to Google Apps but also to so many other websites because it allows me to manage more easily two of the hats I wear at school.

Please DO comment and share how you use Google Classroom!

Suzanne M. Rogers, M.Ed
I have taught in private, public, and public open-enrollment charter schools

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