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Creating a Connected Learning Environment in Chromebook Classrooms

Making the shift to a connected classroom  with a digital learning environment is a journey and a phased-in process. Support and training for teachers  along the way are essential. There are a range of elements to consider -- digital citizenship, classroom management of hardware and workflow of assignments, scaffolding of information literacy skills--just to name a few. All leveraged toward the overarching goal of creating digital assignments and projects across the curriculum that are standards-aligned,collaborative, inquiry-driven and rigorous.

Working recently with middle school teachers who are developing 1:1 Chromebook classrooms throughout the upcoming year, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to  give an introductory training as planning gets underway to begin blending digital assignments into daily instruction. We explored features of Google Drive as a starting point and considered options for sharing assignments and organizing class workflow. Teachers saw immediately how creating and sharing Forms with and among students can become vehicles for students’ interactions with class content and assignments as well as for ongoing  formative assessment. Creating a self-grading quiz with Flubaroo Drive Add-on allowed teachers to see how they could quickly provide  immediate formative & summative assessment feedback to students through email (and save valuable time doing so). We walked through process of collaborative writing from pre-write to published piece in Docs while  working with embedded revision history, comment features, and citations within research pane.  It was inspiring work with administrators and teachers who recognize the potential in GAFE (Google Apps for Education) and how Chromebooks in their classrooms will impact how students learn and they teach!

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