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Managing Virtual Classrooms with Google Classroom

With the emergence of the current setbacks brought about by the outbreak of COVID-19, where the teaching and learning process which traditionally used to take place in the four walls of the buildings of school structures. This has become challenging due to endless school lockdowns by the government authorities as a preventive measure to the spread of the pandemic both to the teachers and learners.

This situation has made physical teaching and learning impossible because both the teachers and the learners aren’t present at the institutional structures of learning. Learners and their teachers are left dispersed away from each other in a bid to protect themselves from the dangerous influx of COVID-19.

Day Five, Lead Facilitator on Edify Cohort 2 ELearning teacher training (George Emorut)

So, does this become the end of teaching and learning?

Absolutely NO! With the presence of a variety of the emerging and already existing technologies, learning has definitely to take place. Teaching and learning has to shift from the traditional physical classroom to a virtual classroom. There are a variety of technologies which make this possible. Some of them are paid while others can be accessed absolutely at no cost.

Organized institutions have gone a step to build their own eLearning platforms. In this article, I present to you the popular Google Classroom.

Google Classroom is a free online service that lets teachers and students easily share files with each other. Teachers can post assignments for students to complete and then grade them, all without having to print anything.

It also serves as a way of communicating. Teachers can post announcements and upcoming assignments, as well as email both students and their parents.

How to access Google Classroom

Before you start using Google Classroom, you’ll need to make sure you’re signed in to your Google account. If you don’t have one, you can review our lesson on creating a Google account to get started.

Google Classroom can be accessed by visiting classroom.google.com. There’s also a mobile App that can be downloaded on both iPhone and Android devices.

Creating a class

When you open Google Classroom, the first thing you’ll need to do is create a class. Click the Plus icon in the top-right corner, then select Create class.

This will bring up a dialog box asking if you’re planning on using Google Classroom at a school with students. Google Classroom requires schools to use G Suite for Education if their teachers plan to use it in their actual classrooms. This provides teachers and students with more privacy and security measures. If you’re using Google Classroom for your own personal use, you won’t need to worry about this.

You’ll then need to enter the name of your class. There’s also the option to enter a SectionSubject, and Room if you’re using Google Classroom in a school and want to include this information. When you’re done, click Create.

Navigating Google Classroom
Once you’ve created a class, you’ll be taken to that class’ page.
Adding students to your class via email
Once you’ve created your class, you’ll need to add your students to it. One method you can use is to invite students via email. To do this, you’ll first need to navigate to the People tab.
Click the Invite students icon.
This will send an email to your students, with a link inviting them to join your online classroom.

Adding students with a class code
The second option for adding students to your class is using a class code. This is a short code that anyone can use to join your class if you provide them with it.
There are a couple places to access the class code, first click the Stream tab. Then, you find the class code within the class information section.
Creating assignments and materials
Google Classroom gives you the ability to create and assign work for your students, all without having to print anything. Questions, essays, worksheets, and readings can all be distributed online and made easily available to your class.

Creating an assignment

Whenever you want to create new assignments, questions, or material, you’ll need to navigate to the Classwork tab.

In this tab, you can create assignments and view all current and past assignments. To create an assignment, click the Create button, then select Assignment. You can also select Question if you’d like to pose a single question to your students, or Material if you simply want to post a reading, visual, or other supplementary material.

This will bring up the Assignment form. Google Classroom offers considerable flexibility and options when creating assignments.

Once you’ve completed the form and clicked Assign, your students will receive an email notification letting them know about the assignment.

Google Classroom takes all of your assignments and automatically adds them to your Google Calendar. From the Classwork tab, you can click Google Calendar to pull this up and get a better overall view of the timeline for your assignments’ due dates.

Grading and leaving feedback

After students submit assignments, you’ll be able to review and grade them. Google Classroom gives each assignment its own page, making it easy to grade and leave feedback for your students.

Viewing an individual assignment

To view an assignment, you have two options. Start by navigating to the Classwork tab. Click the assignment you want to grade, then click View Assignment.

Another option is to click the Grades tab. From there, you can open the assignment you want to grade.
Either option will take you to the Student Work page for that assignment. This is where you’ll be able to view each of your students’ submissions and grade them.

Grading assignments from the Student Work page

One way to grade students’ assignments is on the Student Work page. Simply click the score next to any student’s name, then type the grade you’d like to give. 

To see a particular student’s work, click on their name. You can see what they have turned in, what has been returned, and if they are missing assignments.

Google Classroom gives you the ability to export grades from assignments to Google Sheets. To export grades for assignments you’ve finished grading, go to any Student Work page, click the gear icon at the top-right, and select Copy all grades to Google Sheets.

Once you’ve created one of these spreadsheets, it’s important to note that it will not update automatically. Whenever you grade more assignments, you’ll need to export the grades again.

I highly recommend all teachers to explore the use of this awesome tool for lesson management and assessment.

Find more guidance from the Zoom Session in the link below https://youtu.be/9a4IB0UGTrg?list=PLtHVpllnPKLmX3dXrmbwtstqRZxf0tLc3

This post was last modified on September 7, 2021 7:18 pm

Emorut George

A Digital Marketing Specialist, social worker, Multimedia Guru and a computer scientist.

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