• Jeff Madlock

Summertime with Google Classroom

Summertime with Google Classroom

5 ways to bring summertime learning and fun to your students 

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It’s the end of school and once again that beautiful summertime is right around the corner. Wouldn’t it be awesome if this summer your students kept learning…with your help obviously?  How about creating a Google Classroom that is just for summer learning and activities? What a great way to keep the conversation going and create new learning opportunities throughout the Summer vacation! Not only would it help keep those brains from getting dusty, but it could also provide you with some wonderful insight as to what your students learned this year, want to expound on and where they will start the next school year.

Just think of the fun your students, and you could have with just a few weekly projects and activities covering many of the lessons you taught this year and some new ones to make the summer and learning even more fun. From video blogs to podcasts with some creative writing and math thrown in for good measure.  Yes, math! Give them the opportunity to come on board and most likely the benefits will surprise all of you.

Here are a few ideas to help kickstart your Summer Google Classroom (of FUN!).

  1. Video Blogging about Summer travel, reading or work. Encourage the students to tie this into something learned in your classroom or others. You’ll be surprised at how many will embrace this chance to share their lives and express themselves in a way that you never saw in your classroom. Summertime is always an exciting time – even if you spend most of it at a summer job.

  2. Podcast! Well, you knew we were going to throw this one in there!  We love podcasting, and according to the numbers, so does the rest of the world.  Employ some of the same ideas from the video blogging above. Take it a little further and ask students to share their show notes with others in the class. Many students may team up and put the EduTechGuys out of business!

  3. Group projects to encourage teamwork and social growth.  Many students attend camps of all types during the summer (Scouts, Church, Band, etc.). Projects that would help those students broaden their social and community skills can help jumpstart them to step outside of their comfort zone and grow. Have them share with the class through video, audio, pictures, and words! This may also create a viral trend among their newfound friends – and teachers from other schools may reach out! There’s always room for one more in your PLN.

  4. Weekly Science projects for Summertime fun! Easy to assemble and produce science projects for the whole neighborhood! Students just need to be prompted. You know that. Give them some cool science experiments and projects that have a Summertime theme.  Mom and dad will thank you for the outside projects, especially those with the water hose and easy to find ingredients around the house. Oh yeah – this is fun for all ages!

  5. Family Biography.  This is my favorite. Summers are usually spent with family, both immediate and extended. Let’s work on those writing skills and throw in some creativity by encouraging students to highlight their families. Interviewing grandparents, aunts and uncles, even that cool cousin who surfs! These projects will bring out the storytellers! This can incorporate several elements from video to art and photography and of course, audio (podcasting). Weekly assignments can help to keep the students motivated and moving forward.

BONUS!! – Social Media! Yep, it’s time to create a Twitter Chat. #AwesomeSummerProject  Create a cool hashtag to use on Instagram with pictures and detailed notes concerning everything from Science to History. Create a wonderful writing project with the pictures as prompts!

We hope this gets the creative teacher juices flowing and sparks an interest in keeping the learning train chugging through the summer. Look for even more in-depth articles covering the different types of summer projects that you can incorporate in your Summer Google Classrooms soon. We’ve got Jeff locked in the lab working on those right now!  Have a great summer and keep doing the most important job in the world the way you do it!

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