Sunday, September 7, 2014

Rolling Out Google Classroom

It is already the third week of school! The days are flying by as I run around fixing tiny issues, resetting passwords, re-teaching how to set up grade   But, amongst the chaos, I have managed to get some teachers excited about Google Classroom!

Google Classroom is going to alleviate most of the trouble with document sharing, commenting and assigning grades to student work. It creates a folder in your drive for each assignment you give students. Their work gets turned into that folder, and not into your Incoming (or Shared with Me)drive. So, your Drive is neat and tidy! Plus, there is a stream where students can interact with each other and their teachers. Grades can be assigned through this stream too! It is almost like Edmodo meets Google Drive. A match made in Heaven?

I rolled out Google Classroom in a Thursday Tech Three email, which I have resurrected after a year’s break, but with a twist! Instead of throwing tools at the teachers each week,  I thought I would concentrate on promoting communication and collaboration between students and teachers that might reach beyond the classroom. The plans is to send out email each Thursday, with a screencast or quick tip to get teachers interested, then host mini sessions throughout our collaboration day (the one day my middle school doesn’t hold a formal team meeting during team time). It has worked out so well! Teachers come, after reading or listening to my Thursday Tech Three tip, then work together to figure out how the tool can improve communication or collaboration with students. This is the quick tip I shared with them. Google Classroom

We have been a #GAFE school for over 8 years, and still, some of the teachers are struggling to manage their documents inside Drive. I think it is because teachers like a clean surface, a clean desktop and everything sorted into their correct place. Up until now, some have been reluctant to share documents with students, and prefer to have them print them out and turn them old school style.

How do you, as a tech coach, roll out new initiatives? I would be interested to hear!

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