Create Community with Google Classroom
In the YouTube Video “Inviting Students,” Alice Keeler shares that posting the code for a Google Classroom around the school is a way to allow students to sign up for non-rostered classes such as clubs, sports, and co-curriculurs. As a community builder, this really resonated with me because this allows students to sign up immediately and perhaps without the pressure of feeling like others are watching them. It’s also a great stategy to continue clubs when/if your school starts virtually or goes virtual at some point. Alice also states it’s an easier way to distribute and collect information needed.
Hosting clubs before or after school can be hard when you have a full schedule. But what if you hosted a virtual club? Let’s say there is a group of students who are digging math, or STEAM, or love to talk about the books they are reading. Maybe not all of these students are even in your classroom or on your roster! But if you host a virtual club, using Google Classroom, you can make the student a teacher and facilitate a club that might never have formed otherwise. This could work for elementary through high school. Clubs are important for many students, but creating a virtual club allows for more inclusion and more variety. When students feel more connected in their school communities, they are going to show up and feel more empowered.
Depending on the age group, you could be introducing new clubs to your students! You could be the teacher who chairs the science department but loves to read poems and starts a poetry club! You could teach kindergarten but start a cooking club with fifth graders! Virtual club ideas could be fluid and change throughout the year. You could offer it to only your students and use it as a way to continue learning outside of the school walls. Allowing the students to become the teacher will help your students take ownwership of their learning. What clubs would you like to facilitate? That’s a question you could ask your students as well to make sure these clubs are always student-centered.
Share With Others
Are virtual clubs part of your school community? Have you learned how to make them better or more inclusive? Share with me on Twitter! Tag @mjmcalliwrites and let me know!
About The Author
Melody McAllister is a wife, mother of five, educator, and author. She and her family relocated to Alaska from the Dallas area in 2019. McAllister is 2017 Garland NAACP Educator of the Year and author of the I’m Sorry Story. She is also the Logistics Manager for EduMatch Publishing and Alice Keeler, LLC. McAllister has spoken at ISTE and ASTE about equity issues in education, and writes about her journey in her blog, HeGaveMeAMelody.com. If you would like to schedule an author read with your class, please contact her on Twitter or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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