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Home Student & Career Tips Easy Steps on How To Use Google Classroom

Easy Steps on How To Use Google Classroom

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This article contains the steps on how to use google classroom as a student or a tutor.

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The world has gone digital and people of the world are compelled in one way or the other to follow the trend. Hardly will you see a young person without a smart gadget. Owning a smart gadget can be said to be one of the major necessities of being a student as teaching has followed the trend of being digital. It is also no news that the current pandemic, has also forced many educational institutions to go digital. Hence, the need for students to have a smart gadget. As the classroom is becoming more and more paperless, teachers have to start finding solutions to hand out assignments, manage their classroom, communicate with students, and so on.

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Steps on How To Use Google Classroom

A rapidly growing number of teachers are finding their way to Google Classroom. An ingenious virtual classroom that focuses less on tech and more on teaching. When anything Google is mentioned, people often think it’s a thing for technically inclined people but with Google Classroom, you don’t have to be a tech professional to handle this classroom. It is one of the most effective online learning platforms many institutions have embraced.

Google Classroom is a free web-based platform that integrates your G Suite for Education account with all your G Suite services, including Google Docs, Gmail, and Google Calendar

Google Classroom allows tutors to communicate with their students outside the four walls of the classroom. Before Google Classroom students had to be physically in the classroom before a teacher can ask them a question. Now, it can be done anytime. Likewise, students can submit work from anywhere once they have internet access. This saves a lot of time, paper and reduces stress on both the teachers and the students. Imagine those teachers that take elective courses with a large number of students.

Google Classroom enables you to create classes, post assignments, and communicate with your students with ease. It also allows you to see which students have completed their assignments and you can provide direct, real-time feedback and grades. It puts all of your assignments, announcements, and student work right in one place.

No matter what subject a teacher teaches, Google Classroom is a great tool for sharing information with your students, collecting their work, and providing feedback. Instructors can instantly see who has or hasn’t finished the work, and provide immediate, real-time feedback and grades right in Classroom. Setting up Google Classroom is an easy task that needs no help, once you can follow instructions that have been carefully laid down. You’ll find out how to set up your Google classroom account in just a few minutes.

Why you need Google Classroom.

1. Creating a Class and Adding Students On Google Classroom

Google Classroom allows you to create a unique class for every class that you teach. In just three mouse clicks and a few keystrokes, you can create a class.

In the Students section, you can view all the students in your class. Students can be added manually or they can join your class on their own using their own Google account. When you create a class, Google Classroom gives you a class code which will be found on the left side of the screen. Sharing that class code with the students you want to join that class will give them access to join the class from their computers, laptops, or Chromebooks. All the students have to do is to log in to their Google accounts and use the class code to join.

The major fear of teachers is losing control of the class since student are not physically present, most teachers fear student making unnecessary comments. The good news is, you can determine if your students are allowed to comment on the questions, announcements, and assignments you create or if they can only post within the student session. You are still in charge of the class. You can be the only one that can make comment in Google Classroom.

To find the assignments, announcements, and questions that you create, go to the stream session. This is the section in which you’ll spend most of your time after your classes are anchored.

2. Using Google Classroom Assignments

Assignments are a great way to collect student work and provide your students with feedback and grades. When you create an assignment you can provide specific instructions for that assignment, a due date, and a topic. If you include a due date for the assignment, students will have until 11:59 PM on the date to submit their work for that assignment. If they submit the work late, Google Classroom still accepts the assignment but intimates that it was turned in late.

One of the best features of the Google Classroom Assignments is that you can add files to the assignments you create. You can add a file from your computer, a file from Google Drive, a YouTube video, or a link to a Website.

Students can also submit any type of file to your Classroom, not just Google Docs. Not only can students submit their completed work as files, but you can also open them directly from the Classroom and grade them right there. You can open files submitted to your Classroom as long as your computer has an internet connection and the software needed to open the file you don’t even have to be on your school computer!

You can then open the file and grade it on your computer at school or at home. Google Classroom acts like a “Dropbox” for assignments. Students no longer need to print their work and physically hand it in to you. This gives you more time during class to focus on moving forward, as opposed to wasting time collecting work.

3. Spark Discussions with the Questions Feature

Google Classroom allows you to ask a question within a specific class. As with assignments you can add files to the questions you post and can assign a due date to it if you want. You can post a short answer or multiple choice questions for your students to respond to in Classroom.

As students answer a multiple-choice question, Google Classroom categorizes the results for that question and shows you the analysis of the students’ answers in real-time. When you click on one of the multiple-choice answers, Classroom indicates which students chose that option. It should be noted that when students respond to a short answer question, Google Classroom cannot tabulate the results so it simply shows student responses. You can as well comment or reply to each student, and give a deserved grade.

4. Announcements for Your Students

In addition to creating assignments and questions, Google Classroom allows you to create announcements. Students can reply to your messages and you can respond, creating a thread. The entire class can have a conversation based on one announcement. You also have the option of adding a file, a YouTube video, or a link to an announcement.

Announcements are a great way to post notices and reminders about assignments’ due dates to your students. Should you be busy? announcements can be scheduled to be posted at a later time or date, which can help you stay effective and organized.

Things you should know before using Google Classroom

There are a few things you should know before you start using Google Classroom, so you won’t be using it for the wrong reasons. It’s an online learning platform, but it isn’t:

  • a chatbox: You can comment on assignments and announcements, but there’s no chat function. other Google apps can be enabled for chatting purposes should you want to connect with your students for other purposes. E. g Hangouts Meet.
  • a test or quiz tool: There are some possibilities when it comes to making quizzes in Google Classroom, but it’s still not meant to be a quiz tool on its own. There are so many other good apps for that. like Google Forms or BookWidgets quizzes. You can add tests and assignments from other educational apps right inside Google Classroom, like for example, a BookWidgets test that gets automatically graded. You can add a question. Then choose between an open answer or a multiple-choice question, though this is seen as a not so impressive method compared to BookWidgets quizzes.
  • a discussion forum: Though announcements can be made, and students can make comment on them, but it’s not an excellent fit for discussions. Check out Padlet if you’re looking for a simple yet effective, free classroom tool that empowers discussions.

Steps to Set Up Google Classroom Account

1. Sign up

When you go to classroom.google.com you can use Classroom by logging in using a G suite e-mail address or you can use it without “claiming” to use it for education. Everything works just fine that way too. It just harder to manage your students if you have hundreds of them. You’ll have to add them one by one.

2. Create your first class

Click on the “+” button in the right upper corner. Choose for “create a class”. Here, you fill in some detail information about your class. Write down a good class name and section. The class name should be the title of your class so you can find it back in a few seconds. Then click on “create”.

3. Invite students to your class

Once you have created your class, you can invite your students. Let them sign using the Google Classroom app by entering the unique code you gave them. You’ll find the code in your created class. Go to the tab “students”. Another option is to invite your students one by one by entering their e-mail address. One thing you have to keep in mind: your students need to have a Gmail or Google e-mail address.

You can also let your students go to classroom.google.com. There, they can click on “join class”, enter the class code and they are in! This might be a bit faster as you don’t have to type in every student’s e-mail address.

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4. Create your first assignment or make an announcement.

You can share your first announcement in the stream or you can go to Classwork – Click on the “+ Create” button and share your first Google Classroom assignment. Don’t forget to number your assignments. It’s easier for your students to see which one comes first as you are unable to reorder assignments in the stream. You can also move assignments around to the top. Click on the title to see if any students have handed in the assignment and to give grades and feedback. Afterwards, you can return the assignments to your students, so they can start editing again.

5. Add some lesson material to your assignment/class.

Add material from Google Drive or add a YouTube video, a file from your computer, a link, etc. You find these options right beneath the due date. If you just want to share a presentation of your class, which is not linked to an assignment, you can go to the tab “about”. Here you can add some lesson material like slides, interesting articles and examples.

6. Access the Drive folder.

Every time, you create a new class, Google Classroom creates a Drive folder for that class. You can access the folder by going to all your class tiles. On each tile, you’ll find a folder icon. Click on it, and you’re in the folder. Here you can add class materials too. All your students’ assignments automatically end up in the Google Drive folder, so you’ll find it back whenever you want.

The best apps for your Google Classroom.

You can add practically everything to Google Classroom with a link to the website or page. Although, this doesn’t allow students to work interactively with the apps, on the apps. There are a lot of apps that have a built-in share button to Google Classroom. This makes it easy for students to open the app via Google Classroom.

Here’s what you have to do:
  1. Create an account within the application or website.
  2. Create an activity or resource for your students within the application or website.
  3. Use the “share to Classroom” option. You’ll find this option somewhere in the application.
  4. Now you can do things, like creating a quiz and assign them to your students in one of your classes.

Examples of Apps You can Add to Google Classroom

1. BookWidgets

With BookWidgets (Google for Education Partner), you can create interactive exercises for your students on tablets, computers and smartphones. As a teacher, you can choose between more than 40 different exercises and games. Students open the exercise with the app on their iPad, Chromebook or smartphone via a special shortcode or by scanning the QR code you gave them. Or, you can just assign them a BookWidgets exercise, right away in Google Classroom. Just download the BookWidgets Chrome plugin and get started in Google Classroom.

You can even follow your students’ activity, live, from a distance, inside Google Classroom with the Live widgets feature.

The biggest advantage of BookWidgets is that it’s so diverse. Making your own quizzes or worksheets, games like crossword puzzles, memory, spot the difference, jigsaw puzzles etc. as well as making automatically graded tests right inside Google Classroom.

2. EDPuzzle

EDpuzzle is an easy and effective way to deliver videos in your Google Classroom. And it’s not just a video distributor. Add audio-notes and questions to your video.

EDpuzzle makes it easy to add comments to videos and the questions make the video more interactive. When should you use EDpuzzle? You can use it to empower critical thinking when students watch a video. It’s also well suited for flipped classrooms.

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3. Buncee

Buncee is a creation and presentation tool and makes it easy for you and your students to create content for all classroom purposes. You can make an awesome presentation, an interactive story, an engaging lesson, or a beautiful card. Buncee has a lot of fun and educational media tools and graphics, which makes presentations more visual and fun.

Add a presentation, made with Buncee, to your classroom materials of your class in Google Classroom. Students can visit the presentation and use it to study a test or do homework.

4. Nearpod

Nearpod is also a presentation tool like Buncee. It’s also much more than that! Create your own interactive presentations. Add some slides, slide by slide, or choose for a special sway template you can adjust.

All those slides make an amazing interactive presentation. Especially if you add activities like quizzes, open-ended questions, polls, draw questions and others. You can take your students on a field trip within your presentation? Just add a slide with a virtual reality experience from Nearpod’s library.

When your presentation is ready, your students can opt-in by entering a code in their Nearpod app or just click on the assigned link in Google Classroom. You, as a teacher, are in charge of the presentation. when you switch to another slide, the presentation on your students’ devices will also switch to that slide.

When your students’ have to make a quiz or a poll, they can just do that on their screen, as it is a part of the presentation. The answers are gathered live! So you can see immediately what your students answered.

5. Screencastify

If you want to give clear, online instructions, allowing students to process learning material at their own pace, you can use Screencastify to record your screen, voice and yourself while giving instructions and guiding students through some learning materials from a distance. It’s perfect for homework or when some students need homeschooling and you are teaching them from a distance with Google Classroom.

Screencastify makes it super-easy to create instructional videos. Simply install the Screencastify chrome plugin in your Chrome browser, and start creating videos by recording your screen and voice. Students can follow every movement on the screen while listening to your comments. When you’re finished, save and download the video and share it with your students in your learning environment (e.g. Google Classroom).

6. Newsela

Newsela builds reading comprehension through levelled articles, real-time assessments and actionable insights. Students can read articles on their own tempo. Newsela offers articles from world-class news publications in 5 adaptive study levels. You can also unlock progress with embedded assessments like quizzes.

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So, if you require a good text that is modified to different reading levels, you should include some of these articles in Google Classroom.

7. Quizlet

Quizlet is a quiz tool that focuses on terms and definitions. As a teacher, you add a class and make a quiz. Share this quiz with your Google Classroom with just a few clicks.

They just have to click on the assignment in Google Classroom and choose what game they want to play. They can take a test, opt for the learn mode, learn by flashcards or match terms with their definitions.

Quizlet Live lets your students work together to find the right word or definition to the description. It’s made for practising terms and definitions.

There’s something tricky though: you can’t see what descriptions your teammates have. If someone on your team makes a mistake, you have to start over again. Teams battle each other in order to be the first team to reach the finish line.

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