Homeschool moms rejoice! Google Classroom is now available to the general public. In the past, Google Classroom was only available to those with an official educational domain, but this is no longer the case. If you have a Google account, you now have access to Google Classroom as well. Homeschool moms can now use Google Classroom to create classes for their children and homeschool groups. <Insert fist bump here!>
What is Google Classroom?
Google Classroom is a powerful educational platform that uses Google Docs, Google Drive, Google Calendar, and Gmail as tools to help educators plan, create, schedule, communicate, and distribute course information.
Tutorials on Google Classroom
If you’re new to Google Classroom, you’ll definitely want to take the time to learn how to use it effectively. One of the best ways to do so is by viewing tutorials. Here are a few thorough Google Classroom tutorials, plus links to Google Classroom Support and the Google Classroom Forum, to help you get you started.
Once you’re familiar with how Google Classroom works, you may want to look for more detailed subject matter videos. Search for specific topics (how to create a test, how to add playlists, etc) to get the most usage from the platform.
- A Guide to Google Classroom (2015)
- An Updated Guide to Google Classroom (2017)
- Google Classroom for Everyone (2017)
- Official Google Classroom Support
- Official Google Classroom Forum
How Homeschool Moms Can Use Google Classroom
Because Google Classroom is such a powerful platform, it can be used in many different ways. If you’re not sure how Google Classroom can be used in your homeschool, I’ve listed some suggestions to help you make the most of this powerful resource.
- Create lesson plans. Move lesson plans from other places and keep them digitally organized on Google Classroom. (If you’d like to learn more about creating homeschool lesson plans, check out this post: Tips For Creating Weekly Lesson Plans.)
- Create a calendar. Keep track of assignments by using Google calendar.
- Add files. Files can easily be added to and downloaded from Google Classroom.
- Add announcements. If you’d like alert your child to important information, create an announcement for him to see.
- Check your child’s activity. See when your child was last active in the classroom.
- Send due date reminders. Reduce the last minute rush to complete assignments by sending reminders in the days prior to the due date.
- Set up future assignments. Stay one step ahead in your planning by adding assignments today and scheduling them for a later posting date.
- Keep track of grades. Another task that is a breeze within Google Classroom.
- Communicate with your child. As your child works on assignments, she can leave comments or questions for you to see. Responding is also easy to do.
- Invite others to join your class. This is a great option for those teaching co-op classes or for moms teaching a single class to multiple children.
- Create YouTube playlists for students. Share videos related to the class. Children can access all videos in one place..
- Link to websites. Send students to relevant sources using specific outside links.
- Create tests. Whether your tests feature open-ended or multiple choice questions, Google Classroom provides the tools you need to create them.
- Add photos. Upload photos and use them however you like. Photos can provide examples of subject matter or be used as writing prompts, etc.
- Recreate assignments with ease. Easily recreate and tweak frequently used forms such as discussion questions for vocabulary lists.
- Personalize the look of your class. Create a thematic look by uploading a photo be used as the class image. (This is similar to a Facebook header.)
I’m thrilled about this update to Google Classroom! I’ll use it to create classes for my girls, but I’ll also be using it to plan coursework for the weekly literature and writing classes I teach. Do you already use Google Classroom? Do you have tips for additional usage? If so, feel free to share them here or start a discussion about Google Classroom over in the AAHM Facebook group.