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Educators and learners digitally access assignments, assessments, grades and announcements every day. Many schools use a K-12 LMS, or learning management system, as an online hub, while some use a learning platform like Google Classroom. Overall, these digital tools help create collaborative online experiences for educators and learners.
Hāpara’s goal is to make it even easier for you to streamline teaching and learning. That’s why Hāpara offers tools that work well with the most popular LMSs and Google Classroom.
What is a K-12 LMS?
An LMS is software that schools can use to build, manage and share digital class content. Learners can access their assignments and assessments at any time and on different devices through the LMS, while also using collaboration features. On top of that, educators have the ability to track assignments and assessments and use reports and analytics within the LMS to make decisions about instruction.
Some LMSs also integrate with a student information system (SIS), while some platforms offer both capabilities rolled into one. Additionally, an LMS may offer educators the ability to communicate with parents or allow parents to see what’s happening with their child’s progress.
Is Google Classroom a K-12 LMS?
Google Classroom is a learning platform that allows educators to use tools such as Google Docs, Forms, Calendar and Google Meet for instruction. Educators can also digitally share class materials, rubrics, assignments and assessments with learners in Google Classroom. Plus, educators can post class announcements, view whether or not learners have completed activities.
While Google Classroom is not by definition an LMS, it continues to add more features that make it function much like an LMS. For example, Google Classroom can sync data with certain SIS platforms and export grades to the SIS.
Which K-12 LMSs does Hāpara work with?
If your school or district uses Schoology or Canvas as their LMS, educators can easily embed Hāpara Workspaces they’ve created, copied or modified. Workspaces offer interactive, personalized learning paths for students to explore lessons, units or projects. After educators embed Workspaces, learners can access the Workspaces directly from the LMS, too.
In Schoology, an educator can add a publicly-shared Workspace link to the materials section of a course. Once the link has been added, the Workspace will be embedded into Schoology. So anytime the educator visits their Schoology materials, they can click on the Workspace and view it in Schoology. When students are in Schoology, they can also access the Workspace without needing to leave Schoology, keeping them focused on learning.
Educators can also embed a Workspace in Canvas by adding it as an announcement. They’ll just need a simple embed code and the publicly-shared Workspace’s link. After adding those, the Workspace will be embedded in Canvas for educators or learners to view.
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How does Hāpara integrate with Google Classroom?
Many Hāpara educators use Google Classroom. The reason they also use Hāpara is because it works side by side with Google Classroom, making it easier to differentiate instruction and personalize learning. In fact, educators and learners don’t even have to leave Hāpara to access Google Classroom. Both tools work together to give them one efficient “digital homebase,” a phrase Lindy Hockenbary emphasizes in her book about online learning.
Why educators should sync Google Classroom classes
When teachers get started with Hāpara, they can select to sync their Google Classroom classes. This creates an integrated “digital homebase” for learners, where they will be able to access Google Classroom content and Hāpara content all within Hāpara Student Dashboard.
When educators sync their Google Classroom classes to Hāpara, it brings over all the content they’ve already created in Google Classroom. It also gives educators visibility into learners’ Google Drive files so they can provide consistent formative feedback.
Overall, this means fewer clicks for both educators and learners. Plus, technology administrators don’t need to take any additional steps. If educators sync classes from Google Classroom to Hāpara, they’ll be able to start using the full capabilities of the integration.
How it works on the educator’s end
Once teachers sync their classes, a Google Classroom icon will appear on their class cards in Hāpara. From there, they can start accessing learners’ Google Drive files in Teacher Dashboard to view progress and provide feedback.
With the Google Classroom integration, educators can also access learners’ Google Drives in Highlights. As they monitor learners’ real-time browsing progress, they can use the Drive search bar to locate files that are shared publicly, shared externally outside of the school domain, unshared or added to the deleted folder.
That means educators can quickly help a learner find a lost file by searching in the deleted or unshared categories. Or they can support a learner who needs help with a Google Doc assignment by quickly searching for it and pulling it up.
From Highlights, educators can also share Google Classroom assignments, questions or materials directly to learners’ screens. With the Share links feature, it only takes a moment to share Google Classroom content with learners.
For instance, a math educator could share a Google Classroom quiz to learners’ screens. Then they could use the Highlights “freeze screens” feature. Learners would then only be able to work on the quiz without the ability to visit outside resources online.
Educators could also use these steps to send an article, focus learners and scaffold reading strategies. Again, educators don’t have to leave Hāpara to access all of their Google Classroom content. It’s available within the Hāpara tools they are already using.
How it works on the learner’s end
Learners can access all of their Google Classroom assignments from Student Dashboard. By viewing their “To do” tab, they can see all of their Google Classroom and Hāpara Workspace assignments listed by due date. They can also filter their view by overdue assignments and those with upcoming due dates. With these capabilities, the Hāpara integration with Google Classroom builds learners’ executive functioning skills, including organization, time management and prioritization.
If their teacher uses Highlights to share Google Classroom content directly to their screen, it will automatically open in a new tab. Learners don’t need to click around and visit different websites and tools. Hāpara focuses students on the learning experience at hand.
Hāpara tips for educators who use Google Classroom
For those educators who are more comfortable building content in Google Classroom, they can still do so. In fact, Hāpara celebrates that by making it easy for teachers to access it in Hāpara and share it with learners. Teachers don’t have to recreate content when they start using Hāpara tools. Instead they can just refresh activities for their current learners, if needed.
How do you make the most of your learners’ digital homebase? Whether you use an LMS for K-12 or Google Classroom, Hāpara helps you seamlessly organize teaching and learning. As a result, you’ll have more time to develop meaningful, personalized learning experiences for your students.