Ed Tech Tips with E. Mosier

Make your classroom more Efficient!

Google Updates for a Smoother Classroom

Overview

Google is constantly listening to teachers and making changes to their products to better suit those that request the updates. Each addition is designed to make your classroom more efficient, and make preparation or operation of your class that much smoother. The latest round of updates from the Google for Education team is no different. Most notably, Google Classroom recently underwent some minor updates that are efficient, easy to use, and will make class preparation much simpler. There are a few additional updates that have come out as well. Below are just a few of the main highlights that the Google for Education Team has released.

Classwork Filtering

A great organizational tool for Classroom is the ability to filter assignments. Assigning a Topic to work on the Classwork tab means that students can easily find it. But, that task just became a whole lot easier. Now, when you're on the Classwork page of Google Classroom, you will be able to see all of your Topics on the left hand side. Clicking one of those will filter only that Topic in an expanded view, allowing you to see the number of assignments that have been assigned and turned in on one convenient location.

Post to Top

As you know, any time you post a new assignment to Classroom, it automatically jumps to the bottom of the list. You then had the option to click on the menu and move it up, or even move it to the top. However, with this update, all new assignments created will be posted at the top of the list. However, it is important to note that this feature is only for newly created classes, to avoid conflicting with assignments that already have, or will be, created.

Updates to Attached Files

Attaching files is a critical component to assignment creation. Whether you are posting a rubric for students to see, or directions to follow, or simply an example of student work, attaching files is important. Back in February, when Classroom went through the larger update, the way attachments were done changed a bit. But, the update makes the attachment more visible, and you even have the ability to see the full title when the cursor is hovered above it.

Embed Audio in Google Slides

An awesome update that is coming to Google Slides is the ability to add audio from Drive directly into Slides! Although it may or may not have shown up as an option on your account, it will be coming! When designing a Slide, you will simply head up to the Insert tab, and then select Audio. This will then allow you to add that voiceover, or music clip directly onto your slide! Imagine the possibilities of leaving verbal directions, or reteaching a concept from the Slide and having it be directly in the presentation!

Google Docs Comparison

A feature that hasn't been released yet, but will be coming, is the option to compare two Google Docs files directly next to each other. You will then be able to look for similarities, errors, or any other detail that would be easy to pinpoint if the two are side by side. Stay tuned, as this is set to release soon.

Schedule Emails in GMail

An interesting feature that is now live, if you're a GMail user, is the option to schedule an email to be sent later. Once the email is typed, you will notice the same dropdown next to Send as there is in Google Classroom. This will allow you to schedule the email to be sent at a later date and time. This would work great if you wanted to send reminders about upcoming events, or if you are working with others in different time zones.

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