If you’re ready to start the new year with more streamlined lesson planning, grading, and communication, you’ve come to the right post. Learn my best time-saving tips for using Google Forms in secondary ELA.
With a new year comes new opportunities to explore more innovative ways to engage students, streamline lesson planning, and save time grading. And thanks to tools like Google Forms, the possibilities are endless.
I credit COVID and remote learning for introducing many teachers to the plethora of online learning and collaborative tools like Google Forms. But just because most of us are back in the physical classroom doesn’t mean these game-changing technologies must go away. With the ability to ask questions in various formats, customize content, collect valuable feedback and data, and streamline results, Google Forms should be a mainstay in your teacher toolbox.
Get ready to explore the benefits of using Google Forms in the secondary ELA classroom and learn some must-try ideas for implementing the easy-to-use technology in your classroom this year and beyond.
Before we jump into the fun stuff (aka awesome ideas for incorporating Google Forms into your classroom), let’s talk about all the benefits of this easy-to-use teaching tool.
- Paperless Grading: Say goodbye to stacks of paper cluttering your desk! Google Forms allow you to create and distribute assignments digitally, eliminating the need for traditional paper-based grading.
- Instant Feedback: Students can receive immediate feedback on their submitted work, providing them an instant snapshot of their strengths and areas for growth
- Efficient Data Collection: Google Forms automatically collect and organize data, providing a convenient way for teachers to track student progress and identify areas that may require additional support.
- Time-Saving Surveys: Conduct quick surveys to gather valuable insights from students, such as interests and learning styles, enabling you to adapt your teaching approach accordingly.
- Collaborative Input: Build a sense of autonomy and collaboration by asking students for feedback, opinions, ideas, and preferences, creating a more collaborative and student-centered learning environment.
Many teachers assume Google Forms are for quick quizzes—and they can be. However, that’s just scratching the surface of possibility. Let’s dive into 7 more ways to use Google Forms in your secondary ELA classroom for more effective and efficient teaching.
Assuming what students do or don’t know can be a risky (and ineffective) approach to lesson planning. Stop guessing and create a Google Form that will make it crystal clear. Incorporate these pre-tests at the start of the year, each semester, or before starting a new unit. Incorporate questions that gauge students’ prior knowledge, interests, strengths, and areas for growth.
Google Forms automatically organizes the data, providing valuable insights as you prepare your overall approach and individual lessons. Analyze the results to inform your teaching strategy, tailoring lessons to address specific needs. This streamlined approach helps you with planning and ensures that your lessons align with what your students truly need.
Whether starting this semester with a new set of students or looking to deepen your connection with your current group, you can use Google Forms to build stronger relationships with them. After all, making an effort to get to know your students is a vital component of creating a welcoming and supportive learning environment.
Create surveys that inquire about students’ interests, learning preferences, and academic goals. These surveys are also an excellent opportunity to ask them about their strengths and challenges. You can use the insights to tailor lessons, ensuring a student-centered approach that resonates with individual needs. This proactive engagement fosters a supportive environment, demonstrating your commitment to understanding your students and championing their success.
Teacher tip: Gather valuable insights into your student’s reading preferences or writing and grammar skills by asking some “out-of-the-box” questions requiring more critical and creative thinking. You can ask them their favorite author and why, or have them choose and explain an animal (food or colors work, too) that best represents them.
One of the best ways to build a better classroom library is to fill your shelves with books your students want to read. And what better way to know what that is than to ask students themselves? Set aside time for students to provide book suggestions through an easy-to-access Google Form at least once a semester.
Alternatively, create and display a QR code near your classroom library. Students can scan it with their own devices and provide recommendations throughout the year, giving you valuable insights into their preferences and empowering students to take ownership of their reading choices.
Want to make managing your classroom library a breeze? Begin by creating a form with fields for student name, book title, and checkout date. Create and display a “Book Check-Out” QR code near your classroom library, encouraging students to fill out the form each time they borrow a book. View the response spreadsheet for a real-time list of checked-out books, simplifying tracking and organization.
Once done reading, students place their read book in a designated “return bin.” every few weeks, sift through the bin and responses, marking books as “returned” or making a note to follow up with students who haven’t returned their books as needed.
If you’re tired of drowning in a sea of ungraded homework assignments, it’s time to simplify with Google Forms. Have students complete their homework in a Google Form using various formats ranging from multiple-choice questions and short-answer responses to checkboxes and linear scale ratings. Students can do everything from answering comprehension questions to reviewing grammar.
The best part? Google Forms automatically compiles responses into a neat spreadsheet, making grading a breeze while allowing you to focus on delivering more meaningful feedback. The other best part? No more last-minute trips to the copy machine.
Instead of waiting until the end of the year to gather valuable student feedback about anything from learning materials to teaching methods, aim to seek out student feedback throughout the school year. Google Forms makes tapping into (and organizing) student feedback a breeze and is a powerful strategy to inform and enhance instruction.
Utilize Google Forms to get student feedback on the classroom texts, learning materials, teaching methods, access to support, and overall classroom culture. Inquire about their preferences for learning and receiving feedback. Ask questions about the pace, workload, topics, and texts. Encourage suggestions for improvement or topics they find particularly intriguing. Gathering data about what is and isn’t working for them provides valuable insights into their learning experience while creating a feedback loop that promotes a more student-centered and supportive learning environment.
Skip the traditional paper exit slips and jump into digital ones with Google Forms. These quick end-of-class check-ins are invaluable for gauging student comprehension, allowing you to adjust future lessons as needed.
When creating an exit ticket, keep it short and sweet. Aim for 1-3 targeted questions pertaining to the day’s lesson or key concepts. As students submit their responses, you’ll have access to real-time data, providing a snapshot of their understanding and pinpointing areas that may need clarification or further exploration. The organized data generated by Google Forms helps you streamline the feedback, saving you from the time-consuming task of sifting through stacks of paper. Instead, you have access to useful data in a very time-efficient manner.
Don’t be fooled into thinking you can only use Google Forms for simple surveys and quick quizzes. They are practical tools for collecting data, creating valuable feedback opportunities, and establishing stronger connections with your students.
The best part? Creating them is a breeze, and students find them equally user-friendly.
Feel free to steal any of my ideas above or create your own uses for Google Forms in your classroom. Either way, you’ll be glad you did.
On that note, cheers to a new year filled with student-centered learning, effective lessons, and efficient grading. And, with the help of tools like Google Forms, it definitely can be.