This school year teachers will have a new tool from Google—Google Classroom—which can be operated by any user who has a Google Apps for Education account.Introduced this spring as a new tool for classroom management, Google Classroom was tested in 45 countries around the world, by a total of more than 100,000 educators. Google’s developers sought to create a tool that would give teachers more time to spend educating students. Why, when there are certainly many other technology functions that Google could develop? Because Google’s developers, after spending a year interviewing educators, found that chief among time-absorbing tasks in the teacher’s day is managing the classroom, assigning, collecting and grading homework, and communicating with students. Among all the new education related technology apps available today, this was one area that had not been addressed. Google Classroom was developed to lighten the load for teachers to allow them to do what they do best—teach. The Classroom package includes: gmail, Google Docs and Google Drive.
Google Classroom enables the teacher to set up his or her classroom, assign students, or invite students to join and totally revolutionizes the process of homework, throwing away all the paper and making it entirely electronic. Classroom keeps track of which students have turned in their homework, teachers can review the homework within the app and assign grades on the spot, which are immediately available to the student. Homework assignments are posted to the Google Classroom app. For the student, Google Classroom will greatly enhance their organization. Each student will be given a Google Drive folder, in which the teacher can place Google docs, all the homework assignments can be seen and monitored from an electronic source, no losing papers, etc., students can be in direct contact with their teachers and receive instant feedback, as well as network with other students. One downside for students—they will no longer be able to blame the dog for lost homework.
Naturally, Google is a business, so there was an additional motivation. Google Chrome is now the top selling computer in schools. One million Chromebooks were sold to schools just in the second quarter of 2014. It is to Google’s advantage to develop more products that can be used on the Chromebook. Google is also looking to the future, seeking to build familiarity and alliances with students today that will turn into loyal customers tomorrow.
The app is totally free, all teacher content is protected and there are no ads