In their never-ending quest to find tools that can help them better educate students, teachers have an excellent (and free) resource in the products provided by Google. The tech giant has made providing tools for teachers a part of its corporate culture, leading to more educators using Google in the classroom.
Both teachers and students benefit from tools such as Google Classroom, Advanced Search, Google News, Google Sites, Blogger and YouTube.
Teachers who want to get the most from these free tools for teachers can now take the All Things Google course from Fresno Pacific University. The course offers teachers the chance to earn professional development credit while learning how to better teach students the skills they need for the modern academic and business worlds.
Fresno Pacific designed the program for teachers at the elementary, middle school or high school level who want to use Google in the classroom.
Google for Education and Google Classroom
Google offers a wide variety of digital tools to educators. Free products offered through Google for Education are typically easy to deploy and use, giving IT managers the ability to manage digital tools across an entire school or district. Updates are provided through automated, cloud-based management systems.
The courses available include those that teach students the applied digital skills they need to create presentations and improve in areas such as communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking.
The Fresno Pacific University course focuses primarily on how free Google tools impact classroom practice. The most popular is Google Classroom, a free platform that educators can use as a kind of “mission control” for all Google-related teaching activities.
Google Classroom ties together all Google tools, giving teachers and students a central location for storing files, making and filing assignments, and storing class materials. It also can seamlessly tie into all of Google’s popular tools.
Using Google tools provides many advantages for teachers, including the following.
- Going paperless
- Exposing students to online learning
- Accessibility through any internet-connected device
- Improved communication with students and parents
- Time savings, with all classroom materials and student work in one place
- Teaching students to collaborate through an online platform, something that will serve them well in college and the workplace.
Fresno Pacific’s Course on Google Classroom Tools
Teachers who complete the All Things Google professional development course will have the skills they need to put digital technology to use in their classrooms. They also can share how to use Google’s collaborative tools with their fellow teachers and the community. Course instructor Ed Warkentin has more than 20 years of teaching experience and a Master of Arts in Educational Technology from Fresno Pacific University.
The course is self-paced, allowing students to enroll any time and take up to one year to finish from the date of registration. Students may complete assignments in no less than three weeks for a 3-unit course (one week per unit).
Student outcomes for the course include:
- Demonstrating working knowledge of Google Tools in communication with others around the world
- Using Google Tools with students and reflecting on the experience
- Using Google Tools to write a lesson plan as a central part of students’ experience, with enough detail to be of use to another educator
The All Things Google course provides a unique combination of earning professional development credit while also becoming a better teacher by learning how to incorporate digital tools in the classroom.