Google has launched Classroom, a free tool in the Google apps as an Education suite for teachers. The app is designed to create assignments, communicate with classes and provide feedback.
Google unveiled the app on Teachers' appreciation day as a gift for teachers. The tool integrates Gmail, Docs and Google Drive to assist teachers in creating and collecting assignments without wasting paper. The app also allows teachers to provide direct feedback to individual students and see if they have completed an assignment on time. Google is also working on a dozen pilot schools and universities to test the Classroom app. The internet giant added that the Classroom tool will be available to all schools using Google apps for educators.
"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," Google's Classroom product manager Zach Yeskel wrote in a blog post. "But with today's technology it doesn't have to be this way."
"We spent the past year working closely with many educators to understand the systems they use to simplify their workloads, so they can get back to doing what they love --teaching," Yeskel continued.
Over 30 million teachers and students use Google apps for Education to create presentations, writing assignments and other learning activities. The new tool will especially help developing nations like India where there are time constraints, scarce funding and outdated classrooms. Google Classroom software will equip teachers with time-saving tools, provide better learning for students and will also save time and money.
Google is also promoting other projects to improve education, like its Chromebooks for schools program. The internet giant recently launched a pilot project in Andhra Pradesh, where it provided 25 Chromebooks in 4 schools and also trained teachers in use of the required software. The program will promote interactive learning and better understanding among students. The program started in partnership with the state IT department, which will provide free Wi-Fi access and infrastructure to the schools. Google is already running similar programs in more than 3000 schools across the globe.
Google has also launched a 'helping women get online initiative' across India that aims to educate women and girls on the basics of internet and computer usage. The program has been started in collaboration with the Indian government to bridge the digital divide among millions of people in India. Apart from this, in an effort to provide continued quality education and Internet access to help empower students and teachers, the Indian government is taking various initiatives and is providing subsidized low cost Akash tablets for students in partnership with DataWind.