Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Google Updates - Training Center, Classroom, and more

(Cross posted at emergingedtech.org)

Over the past week there have been a great number of updates to Google's Educational playground, including Google's Training Center and multiple aspects to Google Classroom.

Training Center

The Google Training Center (formerly the Google Learning Center) has now changed it's mode and model for training.  The training center is now based on the ISTE and NCTE standards, as well as the SAMR model .  The tests are also all PERFORMANCE BASED in the sense that a scenario is set up for you and you have to solve or answer problems based on situations that could actually occur.

Certified Educator Level 1- If you're an educator who knows how to use Google tools in the classroom, this certification proves your proficiency.  A Certified Educator Level 1 is based on the guiding SAMR principal that you are using the tools in the classroom in a mode of SUBSTITUTION and AUGMENTATION.

Certified Educator Level 2- If you're an educator who is a super user and enthusiast of Google tools in the classroom, this certification proves your expertise. A Certified Educator Level 2 is based on the guiding SAMR principal that you are using the tools in the classroom in a mode of MODIFICATION and REDEFINITION.

Certified Trainer (formerly Google Education Trainer) - If you're an educator or trainer who has a strong history of training other educators to reach their full potential using Google tools, apply to become a certified trainer.

Certified Innovator (formerly Google Certified Teacher)-If you are an ambassador for change, empower other educators and students, and want to change the world of education by tackling complex opportunities to develop new-to-the-world solutions; WHILE already fostering a thriving innovation culture within your own classroom, school and/or organization.

Classroom share button 

The classroom share button is on websites that allows teachers and students to seamlessly assign or turn-in links, videos and images from another webpage or product.  Many educational content and tool providers have already committed to integrating the Classroom share button, including: 

Classroom API

Warning...the following update applies PREDOMINANTLY for admins BUT the effects of it for teachers can be POWERFUL! Classroom API allows admins to provision and manage classes at scale, and lets developers integrate their applications with Classroom. What this means is that administrators running the district domain (the Google environment) will be able to manage and load class rosters FOR YOU!! Currently and until the end of July, it will still be in developer preview (in which interested admins and developers can sign up for early access). When the preview ends, all Apps for Education domains will be able to use the API (unless the admin has restricted access).

By using the API, admins will be able to provision and populate classes on behalf of their teachers, set up tools to sync their Student Information Systems (i.e. Eschool Data, etc) with Classroom, and get basic visibility into which classes are being taught in their domain. The Classroom API also allows other apps to integrate with Classroom; therefore other apps that you use from the Chrome Web Store for which you need to load a class roster, if you are using Google Classroom and your district and domain are using Classroom API, your roster will be populated for you there.


Re-use previous posts 

How many of us use assignments year after year?? If you used Classroom this year and want to reuse your assignments or materials in future classes...THIS ONE IS FOR YOU!! In August, Google Classroom is planning to roll out the ability for you to reuse assignments and posts from old classes. Stay tuned for more details.

Mobile Classroom notifications

In the next few weeks, the Google team will be adding mobile notifications in our iOS and Android app, therefore students can immediately see when they’ve received a new assignment or grade, a note from their teacher or a comment from a fellow student.  

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