One of the most exciting things about online teaching is that it allows you to help students who are not just in your classroom, but all over the world! Google Classroom has made this possible by allowing teachers to create interactive classes and share them with others, no matter their location or level of technology access. This can also make your job a lot easier, and here are five tips to help you do just that!
1) Use drag-and-drop function
This can be done by clicking on any one of your shared items, then clicking on share and then sharable link. This will create a sharable link that you can share in an email or document or post somewhere else online. Once you have it set up, you can drag-and-drop any PDF file into it and have it automatically convert into a pdf reader. Not only does that make your life easier, but it also makes sure that whatever people see is exactly what you want them to see. And if they click through to edit something? You can control what they see as well.
2) Give Feedback Quickly
If you’re setting up your class, give your students a chance to respond right away. Once they’ve set up their accounts, ask them for feedback or fill out a survey. Even if you don’t want to hear their responses (you probably do, but it can be scary), giving feedback early and often is a great way to save time later. Not only will it help your students acclimate more quickly, but it can also save you from making big changes later on in an attempt to fit everyone’s needs. In other words: Take time now, or take more time later . . . which would you prefer?
3) Add Links to Learning Resources
Adding links to interactive content and resources can keep your students engaged. It also makes it easy for them to track which learning materials are most useful for them, so you can focus on what’s most relevant as you move forward. Many teachers already use interactive activities in their classrooms; if that sounds like you, consider taking things a step further by adding links right into Google Classroom.
4) Use the Google form to poll your students
With a Google Form, you can collect data quickly and easily. One of my favorite uses for it is creating an online poll and distributing it through email. Once you create your form, click Get responses from your admin panel on each student’s response, and then embed a simple survey into an email using a special link. Then all you have to do is send out that email ! You’ve got quick feedback from your students. The best part is that if one student misses school or submits their survey late, it doesn’t negatively impact everyone else who submits theirs on time. This lets you find out how your class feels without stressing over whether a classmate will finish on time or not.
5) Use Google docs for group activities
Sometimes you have a group activity where you can divide up work. Instead of setting individual group assignments, set one group assignment that’s shared on Google docs so everyone has access and can edit it at any time. This is especially helpful for activities like creating a graphic organizer or annotating a text. It will save you time because students won’t need to come see you for each individual assignment.
If you’re already a classroom teacher, there are a few new things you’ll have to get used to when it comes to how you spend your time. But once you do get into a rhythm, you’ll be able to see just how much time being online has freed up in your schedule—which is something all teachers can appreciate. Besides putting fun and interactive classes online, using Google Classroom also has other advantages as well: There’s no need for long-winded explanations of homework or answer keys. Using materials online has huge benefits for students who might otherwise not be able to access them at home. And class discussions can happen without students having an excuse not join in because they’re too busy on their phones during class.