Adventures in Google Classroomland: Rethinking the Weather Project, Task 1

This time last year, I was starting my favorite project of the year with my students: i, Meteorologist.  I’d moved an almost completely pen and paper unit I’d been using for a couple of years into Google Drive, (pre-Classroom) and had spent the 8 weeks we worked on it tracking down assignments completed by students.  It was a logistical nightmare.

This year, after working with Classroom for several months, I’ve considered how I can get the various worksheets on my choice menus onto Classroom and thus, in their own folders and I THINK I can make this happen.  I’ve been talking to people on Google+ in the Classroom community about how many different assignments can be added to a single lesson before Classroom rebels and it looks like I can make this happen the way I want.  Just in case though, I’ve cleaned off my Edmodo account, set up some subgroups and will add everyone there so a few assignments can be done through that platform if needed.

One of my biggest concerns has been being able to use the choice menu the same way in Classroom as I did last year in Drive alone.  I know things will be more organized, but not all tasks “fit” as far as giving each student an individual copy.  Each choice menu has 9 choices for the students. In Task 1: Research and Data Collection, I have decided to assign the 4 reading and video review assignments directly through Classroom so each student gets a copy of the documents.  I created one document with the 5 other assignments so all the data would be in one place for each student.  Although they only have to do enough tasks to earn 50 points, I will encourage them to complete all of the tasks in Task 1 so they can use that information in subsequent tasks.  Here are the choice menu and data collection docs for Task 1.


Task 1 with new wording to direct students to Classroom. Four tasks are found on Classroom.
Task 1 Data Collection Sheet. 5 tasks go here.
Still in draft format, the four tasks can be found here. Each is assigned to each student (although they have the choice of not doing them all). Last year I had a stack of video review slips on the counter. We went through hundreds of sheets of paper. Not this year!

We start the project in a week. I haven’t used Classroom for discussions yet, but this would be the perfect time to check out that feature.  One of my “co teachers” uses discussions and comments all the time and her high school kids are engaged in spirited discussions.  Hopefully, my 8th graders will be as spirited.

If necessary, I will use Edmodo to flesh out the project by putting people in subgroups, etc., but for now, I think we’ll be ok.  More next week!

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