Supercharge Google Meet for your Classroom

 

Google Meet is a powerful tool that is being used widely for distance learning. To get even more functionality out of Google Meet, you can supercharge your Meet sessions for your classroom by using some of the following tips.

 

Who’s there??

In the past, you could only see a view of around 4 people at once in a Google Meet session. Google has quickly rolled out a new tile view so you can see 16 people at a time on your screen.

If your Google Meet sessions have more than 16 people, you can download the Google Meet Grid View extension. This extension allows you to see every participant in the call, as well as including a variety of options such as highlighting who is speaking, and hiding participants without video.

 

 

Hands up!

Having many people in a Meet discussion can prove difficult. Best practice is to have everyone except for the speaker on mute, however, it can get awkward when someone needs to speak. The Nod – Reactions for Google Meet extension allows participants to send real-time reactions to the presenter/speaker, such as a ‘hands up’ emoji to indicate they would like to speak or that they have a question. Over and above this, emojis such as a ‘thumbs up’ can be used to easily show understanding of what is being said.

Note – this works best when the extension is pushed out to all users through the Google Admin console, as all participants need the extension to see the reactions.

 

 

Roll Call!

For teachers that want an easy way to know who attended a Google Meet session, there is no need to manually do a roll call or count all of your participants. The Google Meet Attendance extension keeps track of all participants from the meeting. As you start your Google Meet session, you can enter a list of expected attendees, and the extension will detect who has joined. You can then also download the list as a CSV file.

 

Demo time!

For teachers wanting to demonstrate something such as how to solve a math problem, usually, they would use a whiteboard. Rather than trying to awkwardly position your camera so your class can see you draw on an actual whiteboard, you have the option of downloading the Google Meet Classroom Extension. This adds a whiteboard option into your Google Meet menu – then simply present your screen, click on the Whiteboard button, and you are demonstrating a math activity to your class just like that! For this to work best, you would want a touchscreen device with a stylus.

 

If you have an extra device such as an iPad, consider presenting from your mobile device. To use an iPad as an example, you may want to join a call using a device so your class can see you (as you would normally), but when you are ready to demonstrate, join the session using your iPad as well (on mute and with the video turned off). Then using the iPad and Apple Pencil, present to the meeting using a whiteboard app such as Explain Everything or Jamboard.

It might also be a good idea to push out this extension to your students via the Google Admin Console. If your students also have touch screen devices, this enables one-on-one or small group discussions via Google Meet where they can demonstrate their learning on a whiteboard app.

 

Did you miss any of that?

With Google now allowing premium features to Education users for free until the 30th of September, make sure that you are making the most of recording your sessions where necessary. I have always said, if you have something important to say, ensure your students have the opportunity to hear/see it more than once. If you are doing a demo as mentioned above, take the opportunity to record the Google Meet session, and upload it to a learning platform such as Google Classroom. Your students can then go back time and again to review the content until they have a solid understanding of what to do.

Note – you could also record a whiteboard session with no participants, upload it to Google Classroom, and allow your students to watch the demonstration in their own time.

 

If you have any other great tips to add that other teachers would benefit from, please feel free to add a comment and share!