Thursday, February 8, 2018

A Student-Centered Approach to Using Google Classroom #TCEA #TCEA18 @AliceKeeler

A Student-Centered Approach to Using Google ClassroomTCEA 2018Alice Keeler

Use Google Slides to give students voice.

Create content in Slides Master mode, then add slides while going through your presentation.

Allow students to edit your presentation. If your content is in the slides master, it's easy for you to reformat or re-add your content on the fly.

When things go wrong, remember "Slides are free, make a new one!"

Google Classroom is Google Drive management, it's not necessarily student centered.


  • Always start with Google Classroom. Have something there for the students to work on from the moment they walk into class. Teacher should Talk LESS.
  • Start the names of all assignments/posts in Google Classroom #001, #002, #003, etc. 
  • Post assignment instructions in a linked Google Doc or Slides so you have more formatting options. Can integrate videos, screen shots as needed
  • Provide LESS directions. Step-by-step means teacher is doing all of the thinking. Leave some decision making up to the students. Students need to be able to choose appropriate tools.
  • Provide Choices. (Students don't often get to make choices. They even have to ask permission to go to the bathroom. So when faced with choices, they often freeze.) Attach multiple options to an assignment in Google Classroom. Focus on the learning objective, not the assignment. Ex: "Model the Solar System" instead of "Make a poster of the Solar System." Students might do something crappy. Let them redo/retry. But let them try the big ideas!
  • ASK. How does student voice influence what happens in your class? If your lesson plan goes completely 100% the way you planned it, then students weren't involved. Use the Create Question feature in Google Classroom to get feedback from all kids. Be brave at the end of a lesson and ask kids, "What was crappy about this lesson?" or "How would you grade this lesson?" 
  • Have regularly provide evidence of what they're doing. Ask them to upload a pic of what they're doing right now or add a pic to a Google Slides show.
  • Have students set short term goals. Create an assignment asking for their week's goal. They can reply in a private comment. 
  • Design for Collaboration instead of individual activities. 
  • Focus on Feedback

All original work in this post by Sandy Kendell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0). Please see specifics on my re-use policy before re-posting/re-using any of my blog content.