**Proof that Google Classroom is liked by many**
Learning Management What?? After this weeks’ class I was feeling a little bit stressed, overwhelmed, and perhaps a little in over my head. So many people have had experiences using a variety of learning management systems and here I was clueless, have never used anything other than UR Courses and Zoom. Moodle, blackboard, canvas, edmodo, bright space, google classroom all of these different management systems were brought to my attention this week. I was struggling to wrap my head around which one would work best for me in my own teaching and learning and which one I (who often struggles with technology) would be able to figure out and manage for my classroom.
I was able to spend some time with my colleagues this week exploring google classroom. Andres, Roxanne and I were able to meet with “our go to tech guy” at school. He was able to give us a detailed tutorial on google classroom and explain how it works and the benefits of using google classroom in our own teaching and learning. He uses google classroom in his own classroom and it has benefitted him and his students in preparing them for the world outside of schools and ensuring that they are set up for success. Being able to see google classroom in action has reassured me that the program is pretty great and is beneficial not only to the students but to the teacher as well.
I was able to spend some time reading other’s posts in regards to google classroom this week and found them to be helpful and was able to relate to what was being said in their post as we are hoping to use google classroom as the platform for our project as well. Jannae mentioned that google classroom can be beneficial for reminders for students, parents and teachers in regards to assignments, due dates etc. She also made a good point saying that it provides students with a space where things can be re watched, or looked at more than once. This is beneficial for students who may need to see/hear things several times before being able to make a connection, complete an assignment etc. Google classroom also provides us with convenience, now students don’t have to haul around textbooks, there’s no excuses “I lost my homework or My dog ate my homework” etc. Jannae also discussed the frustration that many students have when work is lost (aka via technology, got deleted, didn’t save etc.), google classroom ensures a smooth transition so that this is prevented from happening and students are getting credit where credit is due. Lastly, she provided a wonderful overview of how to use google classroom, I found this helpful as I worked my way through the program itself.
Roxanne, had a great post this week that obviously I was able to relate to as we will be working together for our project. As I stated earlier and she mentioned in her post as well that meeting with a colleague to review google classroom was found to be very beneficial. Through our learning together we found that google classroom can be a great tool for not only students, but parents and teachers as well. Google classroom allows all parties to view assignments, due dates etc. which in turn could encourage accountability for our students. Roxanne made a great point in stating google classroom can be accessed from a variety of sources and doesn’t have to be accessed only at school. This could encourage our students to not only complete tasks at school but find ways of completing these things outside of our school environment as well. We are trying to ensure that we are setting our students up for success, we want them to be engaged, successful citizens in our society and I believe this is a step in the right direction.
Benita had me laughing as I was reading her post. For the record I was not laughing at her expense but at the fact that I myself have been in her shoes on several occasions and could totally relate to what she was talking about. We have it all figured out the night of class, then when we need to figure it out on our own, bam, nothing works, it’s not as easy as it looked, what happened I could do this two nights ago? why won’t it work now!? This has happened to me on several occasions and has left me feeling frustrated, discouraged and incompetent perhaps is a good word. I’m glad that for the sake of this project we are able to navigate and explore these programs in a group, this allows me to feel supported and not alone. Benita did a great job of sharing the pro’s and con’s of google classroom. Like any program everything will have pro’s and con’s, essentially it is up the the teacher decide if the pro’s outweigh the con’s and if this program will be beneficial for the teaching and learning in their specific classroom environment.
I do think that google classroom is a great program to use in our classrooms. It allows technology to be brought into our environments in a positive fashion. I was able to spend some time reading online as to why google classroom is great and should be used in our classrooms today. This article suggests that it is a great tool for teachers because it gives us exposure to an online platform. It provides easy access to materials (for both the teacher and the students), Less paper (meaning environmentally friendly), less lost work (from both parties, teachers and students), and lastly engagement. We are in a society where our children have grown up with technology and if we can find ways of incorporating technology into our classrooms to enhance their learning then all the better. Overall, I think google classroom is a great program and am excited to continue learning with this tool as we work our way through our project this semester. I am also confident that I will be able to use google classroom in my own teaching and learning now and in the future. There are many reasons (as mentioned throughout the post) for incorporating google classroom into our experiences and am excited to see what the opportunities this will bring for me in my own classroom.