What is Google Classroom and how can it help you?

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Google has a special gift for educators and students alike, as they celebrate Teacher Appreciation Day.

The major tech firm has unveiled a free tool in their Google Apps for Education Suite called Classroom and it aims to make teachers? lives organized and a little easier. Classroom is designed to assist users to quickly create and organize assignments, communicate with classes and to provide feedback. The application has been in development phase for the past year.

Classroom Project Manager Zach Yeskel wrote in a blog saying: ?Classroom is based on the principle that educational tools should be simple and easy to use, and is designed to give teachers more time to teach and students more time to learn?. The app is now available in preview and it integrates Gmail, Google Docs, and Google Drive to help create and collect assignments without the need to use paper.

The tool also enables teachers to see which students have or have not completed their work or assignments and enables them to also provide direct feedback individually. Another feature lets teachers make announcements to the class, as well as to ask questions and place comments together with students in real time.

Organization is hard for both teachers and students and Classroom looks to help address that. The tool automatically creates a Drive folder for every assignment and student. Students will then be able to see what is due on their assignments page.

Potential users will be happy to know that Classroom will be free of ads and Google will not be using your data or student content for any advertising purposes.

Yeskel can relate to how hard a teacher?s life is, being a former teacher himself. He mentioned: ?As a former high school math teacher, I know all too well that teachers spend a ton of valuable time doing things other than teaching ? waking up early to grade quizzes, collecting and returning piles of paper assignments, and battling copy machine paper jams?. The plan for Classroom is to make technology ease the teacher?s workload so that they can focus more on what they are supposed to do, teaching.

Classroom is being tested out in a few schools and universities and interested schools can apply. All schools that use the Google apps for Education suite should see Classroom by September.

Photo Source: Google blog UK

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