Tired of carrying pounds of paper assignments home in your teacher bags? (Let’s be honest – you don’t really grade them, do you?!)
I’ve done my fair share of schlepping papers to and from school and you know what? I rarely graded anything at home. Perhaps the thought of taking work home deterred me.
Enter Google Classroom. Not only is work completed online, but I feel like I’m grading more work than when I assigned paper assignments. Seriously.
1.) Your students will need to have emails associated with Gmail. My school uses Gmail and we have 1:1 laptops, so I’m lucky. Create your classroom by opening the classroom app in your Gmail and adding students. Don’t forget to give your class a name (I teach two different grades and have different classrooms)
2.) Once students accept the invite, I usually take them on a tour of the classroom. I do a model assignment and show them where the “Turn In” button is (very important, as most students will want to “Share” work instead of “Turn In.”
3.) Assign something! Give students practice with a sample assignment. Let them play around with where they can find their grades, how to respond to comments, etc.
4.) Assign something for real! Be sure to give a due date (and time). Students who do not turn in the assignment on time will be marked as “missing” and students who turn it in late will be marked “done late.” I LOVE this feature, as it makes it easy for me to see who did the assignment. It’s also great feedback for parents who insist their child completed the assignment. No more blaming teachers for losing papers!
5.) Give students feedback. When I grade the assignments, I write comments next to students’ answers. They often respond and we have an online dialogue going. I usually allow students to correct their work and resubmit for a better grade. Talk about revision and learning!
6.) Google classroom is a great assignment tracker, not only for teachers, but for students. Classroom creates a folder for each student, so it’s easy to see a portfolio of their work.
7.) It’s a good substitute. When I am out sick, I just post assignments on Google Classroom. There is a feature that allows you to email the entire class, which I use to let students know that I will be out and their work will be online. All the sub has to do is make sure students are not on other websites (although we all know they probably are).
8.) Once you grade an assignment, you can return it to students and they will see their score. How simple is that?!
9.) You can assign quizzes! Just use Google forms to make a quiz (more on this in a later post) and put it on Google Classroom. I just started using this feature and I seriously can grade quizzes in a flash (Google can also grade them for you giving kids instant feedback). OMG.
10.) Add co-teachers and other collaborators. I add my special education push-in co-teacher on my classroom. She posts modified assignments to her caseload. It’s a win-win in that I can differentiate my assignments without students going “Why does Johnny’s paper look different than mine?!” With Google Classroom you can assign students work based on their individual level.
Google Classroom has made me a more efficient teacher (and grader). I always offer paper copies of the work for my students who do not have access to a computer. However, many of my students have phones and have the Google Classroom App, so they do their homework on their phone (not sure I’m a fan of that, but whatever works!)
Do you use Google Classroom? Do you like it? Love it? Let me know!