For my online class this summer, the final project was to get a micro-credential related to education. I figured since I’m pretty familiar with everything google has to offer, I might as well become certified through google! But I’ll be honest; it was harder than I thought it was going to be. While I knew a lot about what google offers for everyone, I knew nothing about the G Suite for Education, which is what google offers to teachers. Not only did I learn about new ways to utilize google products, I also learned a little bit about how to better organize my life!
1. I could be SO much more organized than I currently am
Okay, this is kind of hard to admit to myself, but I’m not that organized. I like to say that I am, and I love looking at organizational things at Target, but that doesn’t quite translate into actually being organized. I’m one of those people who will buy a planner at the beginning of the school year, and stop using it after syllabus week. But after learning all about how google educators can stay organized, I’ve been able to make some changes! The most successful one so far has been utilizing my google calendar – especially the “tasks” feature. Through my gmail account, I can create tasks, set a due date, and import them into my calendar. This makes it easy to see what I need to do on what day, and it is easy to change due dates if necessary. I actually feel so much more organized because of this, and I’m so glad I found out about it!
2. The possibilities for using Google in the classroom are endless
Like I said earlier, I use google products often – I use Drive almost exclusively for keeping my schoolwork organized, and I check my calendar at least once a day. That being said, I never considered how some google features could be useful for teaching. The one that I found really interesting was Google Forms. You’ve probably seen this before when filling out surveys for your friends’ research projects, or end-of-year teacher assessment surveys. However, they can be super useful in the classroom! One teacher I read about used Forms as a way to gauge his students understanding of a concept before moving on. Another teacher used Forms to take attendance each day, using the grid feature, and then exported the results to a Google Sheet. Forms is just one example of the many ways teachers can used Google products for outside-the-box teaching and assessment.
3. You can run an entire classroom through Google
Kind of going off of the last point, you can literally run your whole classroom through Google Classrooms. I had never heard of these before the GCE, but they are amazing! My favorite part about Classrooms is how much you can customize them. For example, you can create assignments, add a due date an time, decide if you want to attach a worksheet or instructions, and transfer grades directly to Google Sheets. It is also super easy and intuitive to use, so even someone with limited knowledge of Google products should have no problem with using Classrooms.
So these were the biggest things I learned from taking the GCE! I am so glad I was able to do this, and feel like I will be a better teacher because of it. Have any of you taken the GCE or gotten a similar credential? Any thoughts or questions? Let me know in the comments! As always, thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoyed the post!