Creating and Assigning Work for Google Classroom Blog Title

Creating and Assigning Work for Google Classroom

Creating and Assigning Work for Google Classroom

Stepping away from paper and entering a digital world can feel overwhelming.  Just the idea of creating and assigning work for a Google Classroom can feel scary.  However, it doesn’t have to be as difficult as it seems.  As a matter of fact, once you get the hang of it, moving towards a more digital classroom has a tremendous amount of advantages, not to mention the incredible amount of TIME that can be SAVED!!  Follow along and before you know it, you will be creating and assigning work for Google Classroom.

 

creating and Assigning Work for Google Classroom Video Tutorial

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1

Make sure you are logged into your Google Drive account.  If you are on a chromebook, this happens by default.  However, if you are on a desktop, you must click the silhouette of a person in the upper right corner, login to your account and click link data when prompted.  All this means is by logging in this way, you have simultaneously logged into your Google Drive, Classroom, Calendar and every other feature Google has provided.

Once you have done that open a few tabs in your Chrome Browser.  When you can bounce back and forth between your the topics you are working on you will find that it is a time saver to have everything open at once.  So, open a tab with Google Drive and a tab with Google Classroom.  Within the Google Drive tab, click New, then Google Doc.  I personally like to sort all of my work into specific folders (if you are interested in a tutorial on how to do this, or anything else please leave a comment below), however, this is optional.

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Step 2

Create your work.  Within the document you just created, you will create the work you are asking the students to complete.  You can add links of article for them to read, links of videos to watch or write questions for them to complete.  In the example I provided, the students will be answering a question.  I insert a single box from the tables tab as the space for students to answer questions.  This keeps the worksheets organized and makes grading easier.

Creating and Assigning Work in Google Classroom How to 2

 

Step 3

Assigning the work in classroom.  This is actually the easiest part.  Once your assignment is created, you go to the Google Classroom tab we opened and start by selecting your the class you are assigning work to.  Within the classroom stream, click the plus button on the bottom right hand corner and select assignment.

Creating and Assigning Work in Google Classroom How to 3

Step 4

Set up the who, what and when.  Who will you assign the work to?  What are you assigning?  When is it due?  All of these options are provided on the screen.  If you want every student to complete the work, leave the default all students.  However, if this is a make-up assignment or extra credit that only a few students are receiving, you can individually select each student.

Next, attach the assignment.  When you use all of the Google products, it truly does work seamlessly.  Of course, many of us still use other programs.  You can attach other forms of documents, but as I said in the video, you get far more functionality from a Google Doc.  If you are using a Google Doc, select the Google Drive triangle and select the file you want to assign.  Then decide what permissions you are giving the students.  Is it a view only? Edit?  Or assigning to each student?  If you are using it as an assignment, you want every student to have their own copy.

Once the work is attached, all you have left to do is set a due date.  The default due date is the next day, but you have the ability to set it to the minute.  This could be used for in class assignments or quizzes.  Now that all of options are set, click Assign and the students will receive there work (a lot faster than handing out papers).

Creating and Assigning Work in Google Classroom How to 3

 

And that is all there is to creating and assigning work for Google Classroom.   Technology can seem overwhelming because it isn’t always clear where to start.  But the purpose of these tutorials are to give you stress-free, practical guides on how to bring technology into your classroom.

If you missed our post on How to Create your First Google Classroom, you can find the post and video here.  And please comment with any technology tutorials you would like us to create.

 

 

Creating and Assigning Work in Google Classroom

Step-by-step guide - Create Google Classroom

How to Create your First Google Classroom

Setting up your first Google Classroom can feel intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. Watch the video provided and follow the steps and by the end of this video, you will have your first Google Classroom up and running.

STep-by-Step Guide for Setting up Google Classroom

Google Classroom is an incredible tool for every teacher, no matter how comfortable you are with technology.  Whether you have everyday access to technology in your classroom or you are just beginning to introduce it, Google Classroom is the perfect choice for you.   Google Classroom can be used everyday, once a week, just at home or for only one assignment.  It is versatility and customization.

Step-by-step guide - Create Google Classroom

How to Create your First Google Classroom – Step-by-step guide.

 

What is Google Classroom?

Google Classroom is an online organization tool, which allows teachers to share information and post assignments.  It also allows students to organize information, collaborate and complete assignments.  Google Classroom creates a social media type setting for work to be shared and discussed.  This format is straightforward, yet very engaging for students.

So let’s get started!

 

Step 1

Go to classroom.google.com  or type Google Classroom into a search engine.  Google Classroom’s functionality works best with Google Chrome.  If you are used to using a different browser (Safari, Explorer), consider switching to Google Chrome.  It is great for teaching!

Once you are on the Google Classroom web page, select that you are a teacher.  This step is very important,  it is very annoying to try to reset your account if you select student instead.

Step 2

The screen you see now will be your home screen and from here, you want to create your first class.   Begin by clicking the plus button on the top right of the screen.  You will be prompted to either select create a class or join a class.  As a teacher, you can join classes, but for today, click create a class.  This will begin creating your first Google Classroom.

 

Create your First Google Classroom

 

Step 3

Name your class.  I find that creating a class for each group (period, section, block) of students you see is the easiest way to manage things.  If you put every student you have in one classroom, things get overwhelming and lost.  So, when naming this first class, make it the first group of students you see.  If you use specific names for your groups, or just want to name it based on the time of day you see them, it is totally up to you.  I personally use periods, but I can be rather straightforward.   You will give the class a name, identify the section and subject.  Once you click CREATE, you have done it.  You have created your first Google Classroom.

Create Google Classroom - Naming

 

Step 4

Navigating Classroom.  Once the class is created you will go to your classroom’s home screen, it is called the stream.  This screen is where most of your work will take place.  You can share documents, create assignments, and post videos (Don’t worry there will be more tutorials).   Before you begin posting assignments, you need to finish setting up the classroom.  Select the About tab on the top of the screen, this is next to the Stream and Students tabs.

Creating First Google Classroom - About

 

Step 5

Once you have selected the About section, you will be able to add additional information about your class.  You also will be able to invite co-teachers to collaborate within the class.  The About section also provides you with a direct link to this classroom’s Google Drive folder (where all the work, documents, sheets, slides and images are stored).

About Creating a Google Classroom

 

Step 6

Invite students to join your class.  Without students in the class, there is no reason to have a Google Classroom.  Once the students join, you can post a question for discussion.  You can share a video for the students to watch either in or out of school.  You can create worksheets and distribute an individualized copy to each student.  The ways to use Google Classroom are truly endless, but we need students in before we can do anything.

Select the Students tab from the top menu.  On this screen, a class code will be provided.  Display the class code for all of the students to see, have them go to the Google Classroom web page and they will select join a class.  The students will enter the code provided and will automatically join your classroom.

Students in First Google Classroom

 

From here, you will be able to post, work, comment, share and grade your students work.

I truly want technology to help you as a teacher, not to feel like an additional responsibility.  I have been able to regain hours of my life by properly using technology in the classroom.  It is an amazing tool to be used to assist a teacher, not to replace one.

Please feel free to comment or email with any questions you have about Google Classroom or any other classroom technology.  I am here to help you become more comfortable with classroom technology.  Stay up to date with all we have to offer by subscribing to Mother Teacher Dreamer.

 

 

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Mother Teacher Dreamer - Teacher Blog

10 Reasons Why Every Teacher Should Blog

Mother Teacher Dreamer - Teacher Blog

10 Reasons Why Every Teacher Should Write a Blog (And how to do it)

***This post contains affiliate links***

 

Every Teacher Should Write a Blog

Pinterest perfect classroom.  We hear the phrase and often a colleague comes to mind.  We can picture the image, but we don’t always realize that behind that pinterest pin was a blog post, most likely written by a teacher just like you and me.  What makes them different?  Probably nothing! Nothing, except they decided to share their talents, not only in the classroom, but online as well.  If you ask me, I believe every teacher should do it and here are 10 reasons why every teacher should write a blog.

 

10 Reasons Why Every Teacher Should Write a Blog

Share your passion

1. Share your passion – Every teacher has a fire burning, in fact, every person has a fire burning in their soul.  There is something that they live for, that they could talk about endlessly.   Writing a blog allows you to share that passion with the world.

Blogging is teaching

2. Blogging is teacher – Teaching is what we do.  We know how to break things down.  How to explain a concept so others can access and digest it.  Blogging allows you to share these ideas in another format.  Creating a blog allows you to move your classroom from one physical place to the whole world.

We are experts

3. We are experts in our field – We are an authority, we know what it is really like.  The expertise we have is valuable and people are looking for the answers you have.  Blogging about your experience offers your knowledge to the world.

Share creativity

4. Share creativity – There are so many different aspect to blogging: the writing, photography, technology.  Blogs can be about anything.  Anything creative you love, you can blog about it.

Keep up in a changing world

5. Keep up with a constantly changing world – Blogging helps you keep current in an ever changing world.  Engaging in the conversations that blogging brings about and sharing your opinion will help to keep an open mind and stay on the cutting edge.

Teacher Blog - Mother Teacher Dreamer

10 Reasons Why Every Teacher Should Write a Bog

Step outside the routine

6. Allows you to step out of the classroom routine – As a teacher, everyday is different.  No two lessons are alike, but a routine is established and maintained.  Blogging is a whole different world.  Some posts take off, others don’t.  The up and down, rollercoaster of excitement that blogging brings is a totally different from the classroom.  It is such a totally different thing and it is so much fun!!

Share success

7. Share your own success – There is no better feeling than truly reaching a student.  When you finally figure out and amazing strategy, you want to share it.  We all want to help as many students as we can.  When you blog, you can share these great ideas with the world.  Imagine how many people you can help.

Create a community

8. Create a community – The purpose of blogging is to have people read what you write and engage with these readers.  By blogging you can increase your professional community, which will give you so many more people to work with, think with and grow with.

Make money

9. Make money – No one decides to become a teacher to be rich, but a little extra income can’t hurt.  There are many blogs that make money, some make a lot of money, some make a little, but every bit helps.

Keep your mind sharp

10. Keep your mind sharp in the summer months – The summer slide isn’t just for kids.  The summer can be a mindless time for many teachers.  Blogging can help you stay sharp and on top of your game.

 

Every Teacher Should Write a Blog

How to do it.

Where to start

What is your greatest skill?  What lights your soul on fire?  For me, it is motherhood, teaching and kindness.  Becoming a mother has turned me into the person I was meant to be.  I can talk about being a mom all day!! Mother

 

And I love teaching! I love the drama, the highs and the lows.  The ever-changing  landscape and kids are hysterical.  I can smile and laugh everyday at work, even on the toughest days.  I also love technology.  Teaching with technology has transformed my career and I cannot get enough.  Using tech, talking about tech and writing about it.  Teacher

 

Also, built deep in my soul is the knowledge that through kindness we can change the world. Dreamer

 An this is what I blog about: motherhood, teaching and kindness.

Mother Teacher Dreamer.

Next Step

Once you have figured out what you will blog about,  decide on a name.  Think of a fun or unique way to capture your message.  Consider brainstorming about your passion to create a name for your blog, or use your own name if it is available.  It took me a while to get to MotherTeacherDreamer, but once I got it, I loved it!

Once you have decided on a name you have to purchase the domain and hosting.  I use Bluehost and you can create your webpage and blog right here through this link!  This link will allow you to get your domain for free and give you a discount on your hosting.  Usually web hosting with Bluehost is $7.95 a month, but through this link you can own your very own website for $3.95 a month.  The support is great and you can have a site up and running in a few hours.

 

 

It may seem a little scary or intimidating, but once you start blogging, you will quickly realize how great it is.  So do it!! Blog, share your voice, immortalize  your story, give your talents to the world.  Your ideas might make the next Pinterest perfect classroom.  Your ideas matter, every teacher should write a blog, we need to hear from you!

3 Tips for Reducing the Paper Used in the Classroom

As an English teacher, I know as well as anyone how overwhelming the paper used in a classroom can become.  Currently I am running a 50% digital to a 50% paper classroom, but I am probably going back to 90% digital to a 10% paper classroom soon.   My desk is almost always a disaster (fortunately I have a wonderful co-teacher that helps keep me together).  When the paper is under control, I feel under control.  When you teach more than 120 students every day and each student turns in multiple sheets of paper a day, it can spiral out of control within a few moments.  If you feel this way too, but are unsure how to begin the move away from paper, let me give you 3 tips for reducing the paper used in the classroom.

 

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3 Tips for Reducing the paper used in the classroom

Tip #1

1. Embrace change.  I know that is so much easier said than done.   As teachers, we are constantly trying to hit a moving target, so if there is anything we can hold onto, we do.  Once you create a great way to present information to your students, the last thing you want to do is change it.  But this is one of this skills we are trying to teach our students, we need to be adaptable, just like them, if we will succeed in this ever-changing world.  

Try a new website or program that will allow you to complete a task digitally, look through Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram or Facebook and find something new.   Some of my personal favorites are Quizlet, Kahoot and EdPuzzle.  These websites allow you to assign work or assess students in a digital format for no cost.  Try it and see if it works.  Children love trying new things, if it works, yay, you have a new tool and if it doesn’t, you have an opportunity to show the students how to be adaptable in the face of difficulties.

Tip #2

2. Join the world of Google.  Google Apps for Education (GAFE) has changed my life. Google has given every single person who signs up for a Google account access to a Google Drive, which is a cloud based storage drive.  You can save anything you want to this, photos, documents, even music.  But the best feature is that you have access to Google Docs, Sheets, Slides and Forms, which is basically the Microsoft Suite with extras.  

All of this is free.  Google Docs allows you to work collaboratively and share documents with people.  Google Slides is an amazing presentation tool, and I use Forms for all of my tests.  The features built into these programs allow you to complete so much work digitally, you will immediately feel the pressures of paper drifting away.  I personally am so attached to Google that I have become a Level 1 Google Certified Educator and have full intentions of continuing my certifications.

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Tip #3

3. Pace yourself.  If you try to switch everything all at once, you will become overwhelmed and get turned off.  There are millions of ways to use technology in the classroom that allow you to eliminate paper.  If you try to go from a traditional classroom to paperless classroom all at once you will burn yourself out.  Consider converting a test to an online format, or have students complete and turn a project in digitally.  Once you begin the transition, you will fine that many of the tedious tasks of teaching have been automated.  We have a wonderful job, but it is hard and why not take a little help from technology.

Now I know that some people feel very strongly about the need for paper and pen in school, and I am not disagreeing.  However, our world is changing everyday and the way we teach needs to prepare our students for the future, not the present.  We are role models for our children and if we want them to push themselves and adapt to a new world, we have to do it too.

Technology in the Classroom

As a teacher, I often hear people complaining about schools today.   They usually explain to me that the way they were taught was just fine; they don’t see the need for change.  Well, let me tell you, there is a need for change in the way things are done in school.  The world is not the same place it once was, the expectations for what a person can do upon graduation is not the same and the role education plays in the lives of many children is quite different than it used to be.

 

One of the major changes I have made is fully integrating the use of technology in the classroom.  I began as a die-hard English teacher that promised that I would never lose the need for paper and was heartbroken at the idea that children didn’t know how to write in script.  But I became a teacher who went nearly paperless last year.  Technology is not the answer, but it is an incredible tool to help prepare students for today’s world.  

 

When we recognize that the world is tremendously different than it used to be, we can begin preparing students for the future, rather than preparing them for the past.  A clear example of this is recognizing that requiring students to just memorize course material to prove that they can remember an obscure fact is not preparing them for the future.  Giving students the opportunity to take risks, to identify what they do know and what they don’t know and assisting students in creating a skill set that allows them to find needed answers, while still providing them with a well-rounded education is what is required for teachers to do today.   I personally am finding that by embedding technology in my classroom, I can address necessary skills, while still preparing my students for the future.

 

Problem solving, basic computer skills and the ability to find information quickly are all requirements to live and work in the world today.  Nearly every job has an expectation of a certain level of technological proficiency.  If this is the expectation in the real world, shouldn’t our teaching help to promote this understanding of technology.  

 

I understand that many people feel that students have enough access to technology in their own lives, but this is not always the case.  The access some children have is rather limited and the personal and recreational use of technology does not prepare them for using technology in an academic or professional setting.  For many children, their school provides their only access to the internet and a working computer.  
By bringing technology into the classroom, by embedding it into my teaching, I have been able to reach students that in other settings I would have not been able to reach. It has given students with no access to technology at home, a place to learn, discover and even sometimes play.  It creates an environment of discovery and self reliance.  My classroom looks nothing like the classrooms I learned in, but that is okay with me.  I am not preparing students for today, I am helping them to create tomorrow.