I often get asked, “Why should I use Google Classroom?”  Teachers that have been using a different learning management system or LMS, want to have a good reason to switch.  Within Google Apps for Education, or GAFE, teachers have access to Google Classroom.

Here are five reasons why Google Classroom can be an invaluable tool for teaching within a GAFE system.

  1. Google Classroom automatically creates folders within your drive.  “I have docs from kids everywhere in my Drive!” This from many teachers who jump into Google Docs with kids. Unfortunately, Drive does not automatically organize all those shared documents.  You have to keep up with it.  But within GAFE, your Drive will automatically create folders that match your classrooms.
  2. Google Classroom keeps assignments organized.
    Within google Classroom you can create an entire lesson to share with your students. You can insert directions, descriptions, links, and resources all within one post.
  3. Google Classroom provides a platform for immediate feedback and progress monitoring.  
    When you create an assignment in Google Classroom, you can opt to have a doc as view only, make a copy for each student, or as a shared document.  The copies and the collaborative docs provide the platform for teachers to monitor work, provide immediate feedback, and guide the quality of work.  Assignment grades are posted within the classroom as well.


4.  Google Classroom encourages online discussions in a closed and secure environment.  
In Classroom, you can now add a question. This opens up a class discussion within your classroom for your students. This could be used to voice opinions about topics or it could be used as a quick assessment tool to get a quick snapshot of your students’ understanding on a subject.  This is also an excellent way for students to learn from each other or see a different point of view. This was added to Classroom in October 2015.

5.  Google Classroom provides a stream of posts, assignments, and discussions available to your students 24/7.  
Share a doc, a link, a video, an image or post a question within your stream to make it available to your students. The beauty of Google is that all a student needs is internet access, making learning available at any time.

Google will attest to the fact, that Classroom is not an official Learning Management System, however it is close and once you try it and become ingrained in it you will see the beauty of it.
If you are working within a GAFE environment and you are using a separate LMS, consider switching to Classroom to make life within Google much more streamlined. Google Classroom holds everything is all in one place making your Drive super organized, student communication simplified, and confusion dismantled.
My favorite resource for learning even more about Google Classroom is from Alice Keeler.  You can read more about Google Classroom and along with tips and tricks here.