Google Classroom is Google’s attempt at a Learning Management System. It is used to organize assignments and communication between the teacher and students. It has a lot of shortcomings, but is still quite useful for certain things.
Google Classroom does take a bit of time to set up classes, get students joined, and get assignments posted. Once going, though, updating and posting things is pretty quick.
Access for Students and Parents
It is really easy for the students to access, but they do need a device connected to the Internet. Parents have to be specifically invited for their email to be able to see it.
Updating and Modifying
It is relatively easy to update and modify things, with a few catches. I’ll discuss this below.
Unknown. It is relatively new to Google’s Suite and they have a long way to go before this will properly compete with other Learning Management Systems. So, I am not sure how long it will be around and how similar it will look in the future. Thus, I am hesitant to really save things to it and invest in it. I use it, but everything in it is actually saved somewhere else.
It is free through the school’s G Suite. If you move to a different district, I imagine you will lose everything in your LAPS classrooms. I don’t know if you can move your classrooms. I don’t think you can use it with personal accounts.
I use Google Classroom with all of my classes. It is the first “go-to” place for them to find information. Even though it has issues, since the students know it and is easy for them to access, I direct them here first. From Google Classroom the students are redirected to my web site, Google Docs, or other locations.
- Easy for students to join, find and use.
- Does a good job managing the turning in of assignments online.
- You can comment and communicate individually with students through it, but it is awkward. Following the thread of communication with an individual students requires clicking through all the assignments to find the comments.
- Posting assignments is easy.
- The Stream becomes more of a “stream of conscience” and quickly becomes a mess and useless for organizing things, especially if students can post to it.
- The organization of assignments, student comments, etc. all is awkward. It can be difficult to find things, especially if they were posted a while ago.
- Migrating information from class to class or year to year is very cumbersome.
- Updating assignments can sometimes be difficult. It often makes copies of work from class to class. So, if you want to update an assignment in one class, you have to make the same update in all the classes where you have this assignment.
- The grading program in Google Classroom is, in my opinion, harder to use than Powerschool.
- It is a straight point based system. No weighting for tests, homework, etc.
- It really only works with assignments that have work turned in, not participation or observation assignments.
- Your grades have to go into Powerschool and this is where students look for their grades. It is another more complicated step to transfer grades from Google Classroom to Powerschool. It is not automatically done.
- For these reasons, I don’t use Google Classrooms grades.
- Google Classroom, like all the Google apps, is changing constantly and improving.
- The grading layout was added this summer.
- They are trying to make it easier to follow the comment thread with individual students.