TjHouston.com posted to his blog 5 reasons why every educator should have a Google Voice account. I have blogged previously about my love for Google Voice in the classroom. I will add in a couple of my own reasons.
- Keeping my cell phone number private, I give out my Google Voice number to students and parents.
- I can set my Google Voice to do not disturb so I can avoid parent phone calls during family events. Parents can still leave me a message though and I do not have to have my phone off.
- I have control. I can set separate voicemail settings depending on who is calling me. If I do have a problem with a student or parent harassing me, I can set it so their calls do not ring my phone. I can set them into a group where my phone does not ring if they call.
- When parents or students leave me a voicemail I get an email or text message of what they said (optional). This keeps me from listening to voicemail messages and knowing if I need to leave what I am doing and take care of an issue.
- And my favorite use is to have students text me their answers to questions in class. It is a free student responder and I can receive their answers either on my cell phone, my iPad or my computer. I love that I can respond back with hints on how they can improve their answer, or words of encouragement.