Already before Covid-19 Google offered a very comprehensive toolbox of applications and resources that could cover most – if not all – needs and requirements of the classroom at all levels for free. In response to the situation as developing since March 2020, they’ve aggregated and explained their efforts in one dedicated website: Teach from Home.
On this dedicated homepage they separately introduce all tools available from Google for teaching and learning, plus additionally suggest ways of integrating them for various tasks and purposes. It remains up to individual instructors to pick and choose and appropriate uses for their respective needs.
Some key apps offered in the Google T&L ecology are:
Google Meet (previously Hangouts Meet)
Google Meet is a video conferencing app for up to 250 participants (depending on applicable G Suite plan subscription).
Google Classroom aims to simplify creating, distributing, and grading assignments by streamlining the process of sharing files between teachers and students. Essentially it integrates Google Drive, Google Docs, Sheets and Slides, Google Calendar and Gmail into a paperless system. Additionally it offers functionalities for assignments, grading, originality reports (since January 2020), and course archiving.
Google Sites is a structured wiki- and webpage-creation tool with the declared goal for anyone to be able to create simple web sites that support collaboration between different editors.
For quizes and/or exams Google suggests to use Google Forms, their survey administration app that is included in the Google Drive.
Jamboard is Google’s visual collaboration tool.
One Google resource not mentioned on Teach-from-Home, but highly relevant to teaching and learning in creative studio subjects is Google Arts and Culture. This is a literally endless pool of resources and materials of all kinds and natures that may be used for inspiration, information, research and/or creative appropriation – again for free (though copyrights may apply).
Google applications work on all platforms and devices, though may integrate slightly more smoothly with other Google products (e.g. Android, Chrome, etc.)
For offline or slow-connectivity access to their information, download the Teach-from-Home PDF (also available in other languages from the Teach-from-Home website).
If you have any trouble finding your way round, Google offers the Teacher Center for support.
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