Watch before you get started - commonly asked questions
Thank you for clicking on this video, my name is Eric Griffith and I'm the Director of Media and Training Programs here at MobileTek Services. My hope is that you will keep an open mind when learning about Google Classroom. This is a great starter learning management system for any educator who's school district uses Google Workspace formerly known as Google Apps for Education and Google G-Suite.
I thought it would be helpful to answer three of the most common questions I get asked for those getting started with Google classroom in a video first in order to help set your mindset for this training.
1. Do I need more than one Google Classroom?
My answer for this is, it depends on what you teach, who you teach, and who you teach with. My general rule of thumb is one Google classroom her subject per block or period. For example if you teach fifth grade math three times a day, with 70 + students total, I would suggest three individual Google Classrooms, one for each block or period. The reason being is you know as well as I do that classrooms move at different speeds because . . . life happens, that in pep assemblies and fire drills. As a result one class may be further along than the other at times. This doesn't mean that you have to post the same the assignment in three different Google classrooms oh, you can actually post it just once and specify all three classrooms, making this a pretty efficient solution.
That being said if you teach a younger grade such as kindergarten through second grade and you are their primary teacher all day long, it may not be necessary to have multiple Google classrooms, you're more than capable of posting different subject assignments in one Google classroom, do that classroom will fill up four times faster than a normal classroom based on the amount of assignments posted, so just keep that in mind. My suggestion for the younger grades is make a fun Google classroom and teach them to navigate between the two, you primary Google Classroom contains the class work and activities you intend them to do on a daily basis for a grade, the other is fun educational content that they can navigate to after they have completed their first assignment. Trust me, they'll learn to navigate between to Google classrooms if there is a big enough motivation to do so.
Lastly this option is up to you though, if you don't think your class is ready for more than one Google classroom then don't start off that way, the same goes for you, if this concept is incredibly stressful for you, just start off with one until you gain the confidence for more. Understand though eventually that each one of your students will have multiple Google classrooms that they have to log into on a daily basis, so the quicker they learn how to accomplish this feet of navigation, the better off they will be. The goal with Google Classroom is to provide a streamlined, organized content and assignment delivery method for you and your students, so the more you rely on that as an organizational tool the better.
2. Can I add parents to my Google Classroom?
In short, sort of . . . What you are adding is their email address to the guardian summaries feature a Google Classroom. This is a very cool feature that automatically emails the parent a summary of missing assignments as well as current assignments and up and coming assignments daily or weekly depending on their preference. In younger grades it may be tempting to sign the parent up as a student, do this may be possible in your district, it isn't recommended. Preferably you should be use the Google account created for your student and if the parent would prefer to sign in as the student on one of their devices that works as well.
3. Can I delete old assignments?
As an educator myself, I understand the importance of cleansing all the paperwork I have accumulated after a set of 9 weeks, or a quarter, or a semester. It's not only a mental health issue for me oh, but it's also part of my organizational routine. That being said my question to you is, will you trash the assignments if they were paper? If the answer is yes, keep in mind that you're eliminating the evidence of student achievement and your school may have something to say about that. My suggestion / recommendation is to archive the class and start another one, I know, you may view it as one more thing on your plate, but this is just a best practice in keeping organized within your Google Classroom. For more information on this watch the video on archiving restoring and copying Google classrooms, I give a step by step process on how to do this task.
Lastly if you have any questions comments or concerns please put them in the comment box below and I'll answer them as soon as I can.