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Google Shows Appreciation by Announcing a New App Just for Teachers
posted by: Ruthie | May 09, 2014, 05:00 AM   


Google announced their newest product on Teacher Appreciation Day.  It’s not a fancy new piece of wearable tech or an update to their uber-popular Android operating system like one might suspect.  Instead, it’s a piece of software that is aimed to appeal to teachers, students, and schools called Google Classroom.

 
It’s not exactly clear how exactly Google Classroom will work yet; however we do know enough about the new venture to ensure it will pique the interests of educators:

  • It’s a way to manage class assignments and paperwork.
  • It will also provide a tool for communication between both teacher and student, and student and student.
  • It’s integrated with Google Apps for Education, and your school needs a Google Apps for Education account for it to work.

There are several questions still to be answered about it:

  • As far as we know, it is not a learning management system and does not integrate grading.
  • While it will enhance communication between teachers and students, it’s not clear if parents will have the ability to be looped in to the communication.
  • The program’s promotion features the software in a 1:1 classroom, which seems to be the best environment. Could it be usable in schools without that level of technology?
  • It claims to be easy to set up, but in my experience, not every piece of classroom software that claims to have an easy set up always does.
  • Will it be able to integrate easily with other Google products not in Google Apps for Education, say YouTube which is popular by many educators who flip their classrooms?
The announced September startup date may be too late in the school year for many teachers to implement it during the 2014-2015 school year, leaving it questionable as to how successful it will be in its first year after launch.

Google Classroom will be available to any school using Google Apps for Education starting in September, but teachers curious about the product can
sign up for a free preview at a yet to be announced date.


You can
watch the preview video for Google Classroom on their YouTube site.

 
 

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