Lockdown has taught us a number of powerful lessons. One of the biggest lessons I believe we can take away from all of this is the need to embrace a more blended learning environment, providing our students access to more of our lesson content digitally so it is accessible from anywhere.
This allows us to really drill down on a blended approach, considering how we can repurpose our classroom space and provide much more authentic and meaningful learning experiences for our students.
Reflecting on Lockdown + Google Classroom
When I reflect on what lock down was like and how we as educators managed, the real hero for me was Google Classroom. This simple and minimalist platform provided a safe and distraction free environment for my learners that I have embraced and continue to use extensively as our country move into alert level 1 and come close to eradicating COVID outright.
From the outside, Classrooms minimalist approach gives the illusion that not much can be achieved on the platform. But once you get some time to explore and consider the strengths of Classroom, you soon realise it is one very powerful tool. The following are three great time saving tips that can help you in Google Classroom.
1. Help students engage with each other by posting a question
By using the question function and enabling the function that allows students to respond to one another, we can empower learners to support one another by answering each others questions:
2. Instantly share resources to Google Classroom from your browser
Using a simple Chrome extension, we can instantly share resources with all of our students through Google Classroom. Super easy and handy to use when looking for relevant readings and resources.
3. Minimise distractions by leveraging topics and materials for announcements
Google Classroom’s minimalist approach doesn’t lend well to a clean and well organised platform. But by leveraging the “Materials” classwork type and dropping it into a specifically designed topic, you now have news and announcements front and centre for your students!