What is great about Google Classroom is it is easy to get started with interacting with students digitally. A challenge can be that we have a set of assignment titles that we reuse often. For example, “Warm up.” If you instruct students to go to Google Classroom to find the warmup, they might be looking at yesterday’s warm-up. A simple way to help your students quickly find the right assignment is to number your assignments.
Number Your Assignments with a Hashtag
This is a really important part of the process! When you number your assignments, include a hashtag at the front.
For example: #001, #002, etc..
3 Digits and a Hashtag to Number Your Assignments
I recommend that you use 3 digits and a hashtag for your numbering system. The reason is how the assignments appear in Google Drive. For digital files numbers alphabetize like letters. Meaning 2, 20, 200 would all sort together. If you want to ensure that your assignments alphabetize in the order of 1, 2, 3, 4 you will want to have a leading zero.
Do Not Reuse your Numbers
One of the main reasons for numbering your assignments is to help you and your students find assignments quickly.
Do NOT restart the numbering.
Each unit I just jump up to the next 10’s place. For example, if I ended the unit on #043 then I would start the next unit at #050. Or just keep going with #044. At the semester, I jump to the next 100. So I might start semester 2 with #200.
I am not counting the number of assignments. I’m assigning each assignment a number to make it easy to find. When I say “You are missing #004” I don’t want any confusion. There is only one number four.
Why the Hashtag
When you search in Google Drive or in Gmail for an assignment number that number could come up in anything! If you are looking for assignment 4, what has a 4 in it? LOTS OF THINGS! With the hashtag your searches are unique to the assignments.
Control F is the keyboard shortcut for Find. When on a webpage, such as Google Classroom or Google Drive, you can use Control F to find assignment numbers. Search for #004 and you will jump straight to that assignment.
When you number your assignments it is significantly easier to communicate missing assignments to students. Quickly jot down on a post-it note: “#012, #032, #034” That is all that needs to be said.
Finding Files in Google Classroom
On the Classwork page of Google Classroom, locate the 3 symbols below your profile icon. The middle symbol is a simplified Google Drive icon.
When you create an assignment in Google Classroom, and there is student work added to the assignment, a folder is automatically created in the class Drive folder. The title of the folder will match your assignment name.
Note, this folder is NOT visible to students. This is YOUR class drive folder. Learn more about how the folder works for Google Classroom here.
If you start your assignments with the hashtag and the 3 digit number, you can alphabetize the folders in Google Drive. This makes it a lot easier for you to locate the folder of assignments.
Attachments in the Assignments
To make it easy to see what attachments (links to Google Drive) go with the assignment consider adding the number to the document title. If my assignment is #006 I will add #006 to the front of the attachment file name.
Renaming File Attachments
Attachments are not really attached. They are linked in Google Drive. You can locate these files in your Drive and easily rename them by pressing N to rename. Even if it is not a Google Doc. Rename your files to match the assignment number the file goes with.