In a previous post, I shared about using Google Classroom in my kindergarteners. Today, I am going to share a few classroom tips for using Google classroom with our youngest learners.
I can't say how important it is to model. In the beginning, I would model and my students would do the same step right after me. As they became more proficient, I could show several steps.
For example, I would show them how to find the Google Classroom tab to open up the app. Then, they would do the exact same step and wait.
As students became more comfortable, I was able to give a mini lesson and then, let them get to work. The first few minutes of them getting started was always filled with high energy. Once, they settled in, they became much more settled in their work.
As with all good teaching, modeling is important.
I would suggest that you begin Google Classroom after you have taught routines and procedures. I always tell my students, "Slow and steady wins the race." I think it is true in this case. Google Classroom is a tool that can enhance learning.
I did not launch Google Classroom until the second half of the year. This was well after my students had some basic computer skills such as the ability to log onto their Chromebook, click and were very familiar with using other sites for learning. More importantly, young learners need to have at least some alphabetic knowledge and writing skills.
This year, I hope to launch Google Classroom earlier in the school year. This is only because I feel more comfortable with using it. It took me some time to get familiar with the platform and to be willing to try it out.
In order for this to be successful, you will have to make time. I purposely planned at least an hour at week when first starting. The time actually increased as we began to create larger projects and work collaboratively.
We did all our work in class rather than asynchronously. This meant that I had to embed technology into my teaching and into my students learning. I had to think "outside the box" and somewhat outside of my comfort zone. For example, when learning about 2 dimensional shapes instead of make an art collage with paper, we used Google Drawing to create our art. This was all new.
I hope that these tips encourage you to give Google Classroom a try with your students. If you have any questions or comments, I'd love to hear from you.