Since Google released Classroom for teachers and students two years ago, it has been widely used in Maine Township High School District 207 and around the world. Over that time, Google has continued to take feedback directly from teachers to make improvements and changes to Classroom.
What is Google Classroom?
While Google created this video to provide an overview of Classroom when it was originally announced in May, we’ve described Classroom in the following terms:
- A community for teachers and students to share and stay organized
- An inbox for teachers
- An assignment book for certain types of assignments for students
Google Classroom allows teachers and students to easily manage workflows with Google Drive files, including Docs, Slides, Sheets, and Forms as well as links. Additionally, Google Classroom is a great way for teachers to share links with students and engage their comments back.
Google Classroom will automatically create a folder in the Google Drive of both the teacher and students for each specific course (inside a folder called, “Google Classroom”). While these folders are not shared folders, they do allow everyone to much more easily stay organized!
Google Classroom is flexible
Teachers can have as many “classes” within Google Classroom as they need or want, and this makes Google Classroom an ideal tool for differentiation. Rather than having all 25 students who sit in the room in a single Google Classroom, the teacher can group them into three or four or five (or as many as she or he wants!) different Google Classrooms, and the art of socially appropriate differentiation will become even easier for teachers to manage. Classroom is also flexible in how it allows for co-teaching.
Get started today
Getting started with Google Classroom is easy. The Google Classroom Chrome App has been distributed to all staff members and can be launched from within the Chrome Apps listing in a new tab. (It looks like the logo pictured above!) Alternatively, you can enter classroom.google.com in Chrome’s Omnibar to navigate to Google Classroom.
Once there, you should see your Maine 207 email address listed in the upper-right corner. Also, in the upper-right corner, the “+” button can be used to create a new class as well as for students (or staff members to join a class).