MACUL Newsletter Resources

December  2021


Learning on the go with Classroom on Android

The past two years have seen a rapid rise in the use of educational tools by teachers and students everywhere – driven primarily by the need for distance learning. Now that educators and schools have experienced the benefits of these tools, their use continues to grow, even as many schools return to in-person and hybrid learning.

While this industry-wide shift to more hours online can be an opportunity for many, it can also be a challenge for some teachers and students, especially in places where communities rely heavily on mobile phones or because of limited internet connectivity.

Google Classroom and other Google Workspace for Education tools are designed to be used anytime, anywhere and on any device. In many countries around the world, the investments we’ve made in our mobile apps have already helped tens of millions of students keep learning remotely by using personal or shared phones.

With this in mind, we’ve launched three new features to improve access to Classroom in mobile-first and limited internet conditions.

With the Classroom Android app, students can now continue to work and learn, even when offline or when faced with spotty internet connections. Now students have the option – when they are online – to download assignment attachments to their phone for viewing and editing later when they are offline.

Although the ability to submit and download assignments, or pose questions and get answers, still requires an internet connection, offline mode gives students the flexibility to take schoolwork anywhere and keep learning on the go.

Many more students today are taking and submitting photos of assignments that are easier and more ideal to complete by hand — like math or science homework.

The Classroom Android app now has a handy scan feature, which students can use to capture and combine multiple pictures into a single file. The upload action in the app now allows for easy selection and submission of multiple different types of files in a single step.

These improvements will help students submit their assignments more efficiently, even if they’re in a rush to meet a deadline.

For teachers who are primarily using a phone, we’ve made big updates to the experience of viewing and grading assignments on the Classroom Android app.

Teachers can now seamlessly swipe between students and assignments and add grades on the app. Teachers can also give feedback to students by enabling comments on individual files, even if there are multiple files in an assignment. They can comment on a file or highlight specific passages to leave more targeted feedback pinpointing improvement areas for students.

The vast majority of people who are new to the internet today use phones rather than computers. With these new Classroom Android app features, we’re providing students and teachers everywhere with a better mobile experience.

We are fully committed to investing in helping educators and schools spark learning and close equity gaps with more supportive, inclusive, and productive educational tools.

99h: Robotics Grant open in NexSys

The Michigan Department of Education is currently accepting applications for the 99h Robotics competitive grant. The application is available in NexSys now through January 6, 2022 at 4:30 pm EST. The 99h Competitive Robotics Competition grant programming engages students in well-rounded STEM learning experience, either during the school day or in afterschool programs. It provides coaches and mentors with opportunities to receive professional learning and access to SCECHs. It also requires that competitive robotics teams establish external partnerships via sponsorships for a connection to workforce, community, and higher education. Competitive robotics programs eligible include For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) – including FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST LEGO League: Discover, Explore, and Challenge, as well as other competitive robotics programs including those hosted by Square One, Robotics Education and Competition (REC) Foundation known as VEX, VEX IQ, and RAD. Find out more about the grant at the link includes the RFP, step-by-step instructions, and a recording of the technical assistance webinar

Get started with FREE mental health and SEL programming

With support from the state of Michigan, Michigan Cares is now available to schools and districts at no cost! The highly customizable, scaffolded curriculum contains more than 1,300 lessons to address the issues K-12 students encounter every day. Plus, administrators can see the real-time effectiveness of the SEL and mental health lessons. Learn all about it, view webinars and materials, and get started:

January REMC Courses will help you “ring in the New Year” with new skills and classroom tools. Earn up to 10 Free SCECHs

January is a great time to enhance and expand your teaching skills in an instructor-led virtual course setting. REMC courses offer 10 free SCECHs, and are open to all Michigan school personnel.  Registration deadline is Friday, December 30th. Through the support of REMC SAVE’s vendor partners all courses are FREE and there are no SCECH fees. Don’t miss out on these virtual courses that are a great way for educators to learn, connect, collaborate and grow from the convenience of their home. Make 2022 the best ever!

Check out January 2022 courses here:

Register by Friday, December 30th. If you have questions or need further assistance with your course registration, please contact Erin Rommeck, REMC Event Coordinator.