Coinciding with the announcement of Project Bloks, Google today introduced new updates and improvements to a slew of classroom tools at the ISTE education technology conference. Announcements include public availability of Cardboard Expeditions, Google Cast for Education, quiz support with automatic grading in Google Forms, and new creative apps for Chromebooks.
The Expeditions Pioneer Program, which launched last September, lets teachers guide students through virtual field trips using Google Cardboard. Now, the Expeditions app is available for all educators and free to download from the Play Store. Teachers can simply download Expeditions on a collection of devices versus having to get a proper kit. However, in partnership with Best Buy Education, Expedition kits are now available for schools to purchase and include a tablet, phones, virtual reality viewers, and a router.
Google Cast for Education
The success of Chromecast is now coming to the classroom with Google Cast for Education. Instead of physically connecting to projectors with adapters, students and teachers will be able to cast wirelessly and effortlessly. The new Cast for Education Chrome app will carry video and audio across complex school networks and has built-in controls for teachers with Google Classroom integration.
Quizes in Google Forms
Google Forms has added support for multiple-choice quizzes that can automatically be graded. Teachers can set correct answers in Forms and add review materials like explanations, supplemental websites, and review videos. Stats will help teachers get a snapshot of what lessons need more explanation.
Discount Chrome apps
Building on the success of Chromebooks in education, Google is also today announcing a collection of creative apps for Chrome OS that schools can purchase at a discount. Teachers have been asking for education apps on Chromebooks to lets students create unique animations, music, and videos. To start it off, Google is offering Explain Everything, Soundtrap and WeVideo, which can be purchased alongside Chromebooks or on their own. They’re also available “as an annual subscription per license from Chromebook resellers in the US,” Google says.
Read more about today’s announcements at the Google for Education blog.