I helped TA a club at a Sunday school at a University, where we taught kids in 3-6th grades about EV3 Robotics. Obviously, we used Zoom for the meetings, and google Classroom was helpful too. So, I made a list with useful software for remote teaching during COVID!
Classroom Management: Google Classroom
Google classroom is an awesome tool for managing a virtual classroom. You can assign HW and CW, post lectures, and even collect HW and CW directly!
Using GC (google classroom) is quite trivial. A teacher must first go to classroom.google.com create the classroom and choose a theme, which is all self-explanatory. You will need a G-Suite or google account for this. Then, you can create a class code that you can send to students. In the main stream, you will want to post the Zoom link, and you should make it recurring so that it is the same all the time (more on that below).
Assignments can be optional, be graded or ungraded. TAs and Teachers can grade assignments and annotate PDFs that are uploaded, and look at other files. Students can submit and unsubmit their files, but you should be careful to check for students who submitted their HW with no files. This is a recent trend I have seen.
Meeting Management: Zoom
Zoom has seen a meteoric rise in the world of video teleconferencing with the COVID-19 pandemic, and is probably the best right now. Main features include:
1. Scheduling recurring meetings with the same link every time
2. Virtual Backgrounds! Save bandwidth on your network
3. Compatibility with external cameras, such as most USB ones
4. Host powers: Muting, Breakout Rooms, etc. (can only have one)
5. Cohost powers: Host but no Breakout Rooms, great for TAs (can have as many as you want)
6. Polling (requires Pro account, $15/month per person)
Zoom.us has many tutorials for how to access the different features, however they do not say that you need a pro account for some features. It may be useful for the teacher to get a pro account during the course to eliminate the 40min time limit as well as get the polling option. Polls are useful for asking questions to students, and you can even share the results with them.
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© The Robo Mentors (Marc and Anne-Sarah Nichitiu)