Bring school groups together using Google+ Communities


Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Create a Google+ Community
  • Invite at least one person to a Google+ Community
  • Post and share a update or comment to a Google+ Community


Scenarios

The following scenarios are examples of how educators use Google+ Communities:

Form a school community group

Mrs. Kumar teaches Hindi and is the school sponsor for three different school groups - Model UN, International Development Society, and the Environmental Club. She notices that in each of the meetings, a common issue of concern is climate change. When she talks with each group, she discovers that each student group would like to work on climate change mitigation and adaption strategies with the other groups. However, none of the students have time for an extra meeting each week.

They decide, instead, to form a virtual student community group online. This has great results because it is used to invite other students outside the school as well as local community members. Students and community members post ideas about what can be done to counteract climate change, share scientific reports about climate change, and hold online debates about the future of climate change.

Create a parent-teacher association

Ms. Klingensmith is the head of the primary school in a joint primary-secondary school, and she has received requests from many parents and teachers to create a parent-teacher association (PTA). Her school receives students from a broad geographic region. This means that many parents have trouble traveling to attend the meetings with the teachers.

Ms. Klingensmith decides to use Google+ to create a PTA Community. She uses the Community to post issues, receive feedback, and hold virtual meetings online so parents can join from their homes across the city and outside the city. After six months of testing these virtual meetings, Ms. Klingensmith polls the parents and teachers and 95% feel that this solution works as well as, or better than, in-person meetings.

Hold elections for the best school logo

Mr. Beaumont is head of a secondary school that focuses on the performing and visual arts. Often the education department of the government asks him questions that require quick responses, but Mr. Beaumont does not like to make decisions about the school without including staff and students. In order to get feedback from his staff and students quickly, Mr. Beaumont created a school Community on Google+.

On this particular day, the education department asks Mr. Beaumont to create and submit an updated school logo within two days. Mr. Beaumont works with a visual arts teacher to come up with four options. He posts them to the Community and asks people to vote for the photos they like. The image with the highest number of votes will be submitted to the education department as the school’s uploaded logo. After the vote, Mr. Beaumont is surprised and happy about the winning logo because he would have chosen a different logo than the one that the students chose.

How-to

Create a Google+ Community

To create a Community:

  1. Navigate to Google+
  2. Select Communities from the drop-down menu in the upper left-hand corner.
  3. Click Create community in the upper right-hand corner.
  4. Choose whether your community is to be public or private. Tip: You can’t edit this later, so if you’re unsure, read the note below about the differences between public and private communities.
    • If you click Private, you’ll also have to choose whether or not people can search for your community.
    • If you click Public, you’ll also have to choose whether or not people need to ask for permission to join the community.
  5. Type a name (it does not need to be unique to your group)
  6. Click Create community.

Tip: If your community has 500 members or more, you cannot change the name.

Differences between private and public communities

  • Public - Anyone can see the community’s posts and the community’s members. There are two options for public communities.
    • Anyone can find and join your group.
    • Anyone can find your group, but they must ask to join.
  • Private - Only members can see the community’s posts. Members and invited people can see the community’s members. There are two options for private communities.
    • Anyone can find your group, but they must ask to join.
    • You can invite people to join, but people cannot search for your group or ask to join.

Invite at least one person to a community

Computer:

  1. Open Google+.
  2. Select Communities from the drop-down menu in the upper left-hand corner .
  3. Select your community and click the Gear icon in the top right-hand corner of your community’s photo  and then Invite people.
  4. In the Add a comment field, you can explain a bit more about your community or why you want people to join.
  5. In the To box, add the people you want to invite. You can invite your circles, individual Google+ users or email addresses.
  6. Click Send in the lower left-hand corner.

Android app:

  1. Open the Google+ app .
  2. Click the down arrow near the top right-hand corner , select My Communities and the name of the community to which you want to invite people.
  3. Click the Person icon near the top right-hand corner .
  4.  Choose people with whom you want to share. You can select the circles or people that you want to share with or you can touch the magnifying glass in the top left-hand corner to search for a person or circle .
  5. When you are finished adding the people you want to invite, click the tick in the top right-hand corner.
  6. Click the arrow icon in the bottom right-hand corner of the post .

NOTE: You cannot invite someone to a community from the mobile app. Please use a desktop computer or the Google+ app.

iPhone/iPad app:

  • Open the Google+ app .
  • Click the Menu icon in the upper left-hand corner  and then Communities .
  • Click the name of the community, click the down arrow , and then Invite people.
  • Click the text next to Only you and type the names of people, circles or email addresses that you want to invite.
  • In the Share your thoughts box, you can explain a bit more about your community or why you’d like people to join.
  • Click Invite in the upper right-hand corner.

Post and share an update or comment to a community

Via Android:

  1. Open  the Google+ app  and click  the Pencil icon in the lower right-hand corner.
  2. To write a post, select Write something, and type your text. You can also select the:
    •  Location box to add your location. (Your device's location setting will need to be on: Android Settings app > Location > ON)
    •  Photo icon to snap a photo or share a photo from your gallery. If you share photos and add a location, that location will be visible in the Photo details section to the people you've shared the post with.
    •  Link icon to share a link.
    •  Mood icon to add an emoticon showing your mood.
  3. Select your name at the top of the screen, select the name of the people or circles with whom you want to share and then, select the tick in the upper right-hand corner.
  4. Select  the Send icon in the lower right-hand corner.

To make your post viewable on your public profile, include Public. When you share something publicly, it's visible to anyone.

Via Desktop:

  1. Navigate to plus.google.com.
  2. Click Share what's new in the share box at the top of your Homepage.
  3. Create your post. You can write text, attach a photo, link or video, or create an event to share.
  4. In the To field, select Circles from the drop-down menu or type the names of the people with whom you want to share your post. To remove a circle or person, click the X next to their name. To make your post viewable on your public profile, click Public. When you share something publicly, it's visible to anyone.
  5. Click Share.

Tip: Drag and drop photos, videos or links into your post. Add photos, videos or links to your posts by dragging them directly to the share box. To add a link, drag the icon next to the URL from the address bar to the share box.

For iOS:

  1. Open the  Google+ app, select the  Main Menu icon at the top left and then, Home.
  2. Select the:
    •  Photo icon to snap a photo or share a photo from your gallery. If you share photos and a location, that location will be visible in the Photo details section to the people with whom you shared the post.
    •  Location icon to share your location. To share your location, your iOS device's location setting needs to be turned on: Settings app > Privacy > Location Services > toggle to ON
    •  Link icon to share a link.
    •  Write icon to share text.
  3. Click the To field at the top to choose the circles or individuals with whom you want to share your post. To remove a circle or person, untick the box next to their name. To make your post viewable on your public profile, include "Public." When you share something publicly, it's visible to anyone.
  4. Select Share.

For Mobile app:

  1. Go to Google+. Select the  Main Menu.
  2. Select the:
    •  Photo icon to snap a photo or share a photo from your gallery. If you share photos and a location, that location will be visible in the Photo details section to the people you've shared the post with.
       Write icon to share text.
       Check-in to share your location in a post.
  3. In the field at the top, touch the Plus icon to choose the circles or individuals with whom you want to share your post. To remove a circle or person, untick the box next to their name. To make your post viewable on your public profile, include Public. When you share something publicly, it's visible to anyone.
  4. Click Share.

Classroom connections

You and your students can use the information you have learned in this lesson in the following ways:

Teachers

  • Form an online Parent Teacher Association - you will be able to communicate from a distance and keep each other up to date more easily. Form a teacher community for all the teachers at your school - teachers can share best practices and post links to interesting articles and activities online.
  • Form a community group with your students in the same class, here you can:
    • Post deadlines
    • Post information
    • Post inspiring quotes

Students

  • Form online communities for student clubs and student groups - you will be able to post the latest information and discuss your club.
  • Form an online community for the student government - you will be able to discuss your latest projects.
  • Form student communities for each school sport - here you can:
    • Post match information
    • Post pictures of matches and games
    • Post information about rallies, try-outs, applications, and award ceremonies

Learn more

Additional information about this lesson can be found here:

Google Educator Group Curriculum

Online Help

Activity

Part A. Create a community and invite a friend

  1. Create a private G+ Community called “Education is Not Free.”
  2. Invite a friend or colleague.

Part B. Post a comment or a photo and share it

Find a Google+ Community that interests you (like a local Google Educator Group) and introduce yourself there.

Part C. How will you use G+ Communities in your classroom?







Please answer all questions in order to receive credit for this project.








Please answer all questions in order to receive credit for this project.

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