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Best Tools for Teachers

tools for teachers
(Image credit: Unsplash: Sergey Zolkin)

If you’re new to teaching or looking to learn more about digital tools for teachers such as Google Classroom, Microsoft Teams, or Flipgrid--and all the related apps and resources--here’s where to get started. We have the basics for each one, including how to get started, plus tips and advice to get the most out of your experience.

Google Education Tools and Apps 

Google Classroom

(Image credit: Google)

Google Classroom is the most popular digital tool in education, due to its cost (free!) and the multitude of easy-to-use apps and resources related to it. 

What is Google Classroom?

Google Classroom is a suite of online tools that allows teachers to set assignments, have work submitted by students, to mark and return graded papers, and more. 

Google Classroom Review

Google Classroom uses the Google ecosystem of tools such as Docs and Slides, for easy materials sharing, and helps simplify student work evaluation.

How Do I Use Google Classroom?

Google Classroom allows teachers to teach remotely with features such as being able to set assignments, post announcements, share resources, communicate, and grade papers with annotations.

How to Setup Google Classroom

If you’re a new teacher looking to set up a class, a student interested in how the platform works, or a guardian looking to learn more about Google Classroom, this start-up guide will help.

Google Classroom for Teachers: A How To Guide

Everything a teacher needs to know about using Google Classroom to its fullest.

What is Google Forms and How Can It Be Used by Teachers?

Google Forms is a quick and easy way to leverage a form-based system to create online quizzes, make grading faster and simpler.

5 Ways to Prevent Cheating on Your Google Form Quiz

Here are five tips for designing "cheat proof" Google Forms!

What is Google Sheets and How Does It Work for Teachers?

Google Sheets is a cloud-based spreadsheet tool that allows teachers to create useful spreadsheets for planning class, grading, and organizing resources, activity reviews, quizzes, and more.

What is Google Slides and How Can It Be Used by Teachers?

Google Slides is a free and super simple presentation tool akin to PowerPoint that teachers can use to create presentations and learning resources.

Google Slides Review

Google Slides is the online presentation tool for teachers to create free resources for students, presentations and more.

How To Turn Google Slides Into An Animated GIF

Many tools to make animated GIFs are available, but it is always helpful to find one that is free and super easy to use with Google tools. 

4 Best Free and Easy Audio Recording Tools for Google Slides

Four excellent, free options for recording audio right in a web browser, and then how to add that audio to Google Slides.

How to Use Google Jamboard, for Teachers

Google Jamboard is an innovative tool that allows teachers to interact with students with a whiteboard-style experience, without even needing to be in the same room.

Tips and Tricks for Teaching with Google Jamboard

Even though Google Jamboard was initially designed with business meetings in mind, it can be a super powerful collaboration tool for schools.

How to Use Google Sites, Tips and Tricks

Google Sites is a free, easy-to-use website building and publishing tool that's ideal for use by teachers and students. 

How to Use Google Meet Grid View and More Tips for Teachers

Google Meet is a popular free-to-use video conferencing tool that replaces Google Hangouts and can be used to hold group or one-to-one video chats. 

6 Tips for Teaching with Google Meet

A variety of lessons can be presented over video with Google Meet, from teaching the history of the Iroquois Confederation, the parts of speech, or how radioactive decay works. Here’s how to make the most of the platform.

Best Google Docs Add-ons for Teachers

A Google Doc add-on is a software addition that allows educators to expand the capabilities of Google Docs so they can be more creative in helping students learn most effectively.

Best Student Templates for Google Docs, Slides, Sheets and Drawings

These templates are great for students who want a quick and easy Doc, Slide, Sheet or Drawing.

How to Use Google Earth for Teaching

Google Earth is a powerful and free-to-use online tool that lets anyone travel the world, virtually.

Best Google Earth Tips and Tricks for Teaching

The best Google Earth tips and tricks for teaching can help turn a classroom, or remote learning experience, into a mind-expanding trip limited only by imagination. 

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is a popular communications platform that works with the entire suite of Microsoft education tools

Microsoft Teams: What Is It and How Does It Work for Education?

Microsoft Teams is an online collaboration platform that allows for video chat, document sharing, collaborative editing, and more – making it ideal for teachers and students.

How to Setup Microsoft Teams Meetings for Teachers and Students

Microsoft Teams allows educators to hold meetings online and create a class environment with students, no matter where everyone is. 

Microsoft Teams Tips and Tricks for Teachers

From holding an online class to collaborating on a document as a class, Microsoft Teams integrates layers to make sure the experience is as seamless as possible. These tips and tricks will help educators get the most out of the platform.

Flipgrid

At its most basic, Flipgrid is a video communication platform

What is Flipgrid and How Does it Work for Teachers and Students?

Flipgrid is a discussion tool designed to work specifically for teachers and students in a digital classroom by using video to create an open platform of discussion and learning.

Best Flipgrid Tips and Tricks for Teachers and Students

The Flipgrid tips and tricks you need to know, from creating the best videos to engaging more with your Grid

Screencastify

What is Screencastify and How Does It Work?

Screencastify is an easy screen recording tool that also allows teachers to create, edit, and share instructional videos. 

Remind

At its most basic, Remind is a communication platform

What is Remind and How Does it Work for Teachers?

Remind is a communication tool that connects teachers, students, and parents instantly, no matter where they are. 

Best Remind Tips and Tricks for Teachers

Remind tips and tricks to help turn the communications platform into a powerful tool that will enhance the learning experience of students in and out of class.

Kahoot!

Kahoot! is an online game-based platform that allows users to create quizzes.

What is Kahoot! and How Does it Work for Teachers?

Game-based learning has never been so easy for teachers and students to enjoy, thanks to Kahoot!

Best Kahoot! Tips and Tricks for Teachers

Kahoot! can help educators engage with students and enhance the teaching experience in class and beyond.

Minecraft

Minecraft is an online game that is often used for gamified learning

What is Minecraft: Education Edition?

Minecraft: Education Edition is a learning-focused version of the popular block-based game, with special options for teachers to offer control while still giving students that open-world freedom for which Minecraft is known.

Minecraft: Education Edition: Tips and Tricks

Minecraft: Education Edition can be a powerful teaching tool when used with the right tips and tricks

Why Minecraft?

Minecraft is about freedom, a trait sorely lacking in education. Kids can build what they want, how they want, block by block, and are only limited by their imagination.

How To Turn A Minecraft Map Into A Google Map

Building a world in Minecraft and then turning it into a Google Map, complete with points of interest, is only limited by your creativity.

How Colleges are Using Minecraft to Create Events and Activities

Higher ed institutions have discovered the value of Minecraft to bridge gaps brought on by remote learning.

Bitmoji

What is a Bitmoji Classroom and How Can I Build One?

The use of Bitmoji, a commonly used app and image-based digital social interaction tool, makes sense for adapting classrooms to feel more natural to students.

Adobe Spark for Education

What is Adobe Spark for Education and How Does It Work for Teachers and Students?

Adobe Spark for Education is a smart yet simple to use digital tool that allows students and teachers to create visually engaging graphics, web pages, and videos.

Best Adobe Spark for Education Tips and Tricks

The best tips and tricks for Adobe Spark for Education can make all the difference in the classroom

Flippity

What is Flippity and How Does It Work?

Flippity is a tool that allows users to take Google Sheets and turn it into activities and helpful resources, such as  from flash cards or quizzes. 

Best Flippity Tips and Tricks for Teachers

Make flash cards, build quizzes, create activities, and better engage students with these Flippity tips and tricks.

Talking Points

What Is TalkingPoints And How Does It Work For Education?

TalkingPoints is a tool designed to help teachers and families connect across any language barriers, allowing teachers to communicate with families in their own language.

Best TalkingPoints Tips And Tricks For Teachers

How to best use the non-profit translation communication platform for the best results.

Seesaw for Schools

What is Seesaw for Schools and How Does It Work for Teachers and Students?

Seesaw for Schools is a digital, app-based engagement platform that allows students, teachers, and parents or guardians to complete and share classroom work. 

Seesaw for Schools Best Tips and Tricks

Seesaw for Schools can enhance the student's learning experience and make a teacher's task more straightforward if you know how to get the most out of it.

Zoho Notebook

What is Zoho Notebook and How Can The Best Tips and Tricks Help Teachers and Students?

Zoho Notebook is a digital note-taking tool that works across devices and operating systems, offering an online suite of tools, including a word processor and an image and audio creator and organizer. 

Khan Academy

What is Khan Academy?

Khan Academy is a free online teaching resource that offers courses to students to further deepen their knowledge to enhance learning for all. While it was created to bring learning to those who either couldn't afford or didn't have access to education, it's now grown into a powerful resource used by many schools as a teaching aid.

TED-Ed

What is TED-Ed and How Can it Be Used for Education?

TED-Ed is the school education-focused arm of the TED video creation platform, filled with educational videos that can be used by teachers to create engaging lessons. 

Best TED-Ed Tips and Tricks for Teaching

The best TED-Ed tips and tricks for teaching can help you take the video-based education platform to its maximum potential, both inside the classroom and for remote learning.

ClassDojo

What is ClassDojo?

ClassDojo is a digital platform that connects teachers, students, and families in and out of the physical classroom by using a feed of photos and videos as well as messaging.

Best ClassDojo Tips and Tricks for Teachers

Whether you're toying with the idea of introducing ClassDojo in your class, you're a regular user, or you've just reached a point at which you need something new, these tips and tricks will help.

Animoto

What is Animoto and How Does It Work?

Animoto is free and easy-to-use video maker that allows for the creation and sharing of videos online. Since it is cloud-based and browser-accessible, it works with nearly any device, making it ideal for education settings.

Best Animoto Tips and Tricks for Teachers

Here are the best Animoto tips and tricks for teachers so you can get the most out of using videos inside and outside of your classroom.

What is ThingLink and How Does it Work?

ThingLink is a website and app-based platform that allows teachers to turn any image, video, or 360-degree VR shot into a learning experience.

Best ThingLink Tips and Tricks for Teaching

The best ThingLink tips and tricks can help you take an image or video and make it interactive, and filled with learning information.

Edpuzzle

What is Edpuzzle and How Does it Work?

Edpuzzle is an online video editing and formative assessment tool that lets teachers cut, crop, and organize videos.

Grackle

What is Grackle and How Can It Be Used to Improve Accessibility?

Grackle is software designed to help make digital files more accessible. It makes sharing files easier and everyone will be able to open and see anything they're sent.

TikTok

How Can TikTok Be Used in the Classroom?

The music video-making social media app is free to use, easily accessible for students, and can be a powerfully creative tool in the teaching toolbox.

Buncee

What is Buncee and How Does It Work?

Buncee is a slideshow system designed specifically for educators, students, and administrators that offers end results that are easy to share and is ideal for both in-classroom use and remote learning.

Buncee Tips and Tricks for Teachers

From videos and images to animations and emojis, there is a lot of media to pick from when building a Buncee, but with a few good ideas from those who have used the platform before, you can make Buncee brilliance. 

Apple Keynote

How To Use Keynote For Education

Apple Keynote is a presentation slideshow creator that can be used in education to help teachers and students create the most powerful and engaging presentations.

Best Keynote Tips and Tricks for Teachers

Keynote offers a host of cinematic transitions and effects that can help to make any subject engaging and entertaining for students. 

WeVideo

What is WeVideo and How Does it Work for Education?

WeVideo is a cloud-based video platform to capture, edit, and view video footage. 

WeVideo Tips and Tricks for Teachers

The best WeVideo tips and tricks can help teachers and students get a more effective learning experience with the use of videos and video editing.

Scratch

What is Scratch and How Does It Work?

Scratch lets students use coding in a visually engaging way thanks to block based programming.

Parlay

What is Parlay and How Does It Work?

Parlay is a digital-based discussion platform that's inclusive and transcends physical barriers.

Digital Citizenship

Digital citizenship is the responsible use of technology, including learning tools, personal devices, and social media 

How to Teach Digital Citizenship

Students need to have a thorough understanding of their digital footprint, how to effectively communicate, the tools they can use, strategies for when they feel unsafe online, and what is considered appropriate and inappropriate behavior. 

Supporting Digital Citizenship During Remote Learning

Educators from New York City’s Department of Education share their best practices and advice for supporting digital citizenship.

Which Digital Citizenship Skills Do Students Need Most?

The data suggests that teachers and schools should consider adopting a more holistic approach to digital citizenship.

Fact-Checking Sites for Students

Online resources for students to properly research reports, papers, and more.

As it always is with education technology, evolution and change come quickly. Check back here regularly as we update these resources with the latest tools and best practices. Learning in the classroom can't happen if the teachers themselves stop learning!