Technology and Support
Using Google Classroom
Google Classroom is our 'learning platform' at Cedars. We use Classroom to share announcements, information, documents and assignments with our classes.
Google Classroom has been set up for all classes in the school, although it is mainly used routinely from Primary 6 and upwards. Primary pupils will only have one or two Google Classroom classes. Secondary pupils should have one class per subject.
Pupils are very well used to Google Classroom and are very adept at using it.
Pupils should check Google Classroom at the start of every lesson. We will be depending heavily on Google Classroom during the shutdown.
Pupils can submit work done electronically to teachers through Google Classroom. Sometimes teachers will provide a 'starter' document for pupils to modify. Other times, pupils will create the document in Google Classroom and do their work in that document.
The video below provides a brief overview of Google Classroom for parents.
Using Google Meet and Google Calendar
Google Meet is a videoconferencing system like Skype or Facetime. It is integrated with the Chromebook system that we use and pupils access it under their account the same as other Google tools.
Every class from P7 upwards has a Google Calendar which includes appointments for each class in their timetable. Each of these appointments has an associated Google Meet link that pupils can click to join the videoconference for that class.
Some teachers may provide alternative Google Meet links in Google Classroom if the published timetable link doesn't meet the class needs. This might happen for pupils working off-timetable in higher grades.
We have developed the following basic Google Meet etiquette. When on a Video Call:
Mute your microphone
Pin the teacher to your screen
If you have a question, or need the bathroom- use the chat function
If you cannot hear the person speaking, raise your hand to ear. The person speaking will see this and check their mic is on.
If the teacher asks you to speak, unmute your microphone and count to 5. Start by saying 'Hello, this is ... .' At the end of your answer/question/comment, say 'that's me finished.' Then press mute.
When someone else is speaking, pin them to your screen.
If you join a call late, quietly listen to what is being said. If you need further help/clarification, ask at the end of the time of instruction, using the chat function.
We trust that pupils will use Google Meet responsibly but, if there is persistent abuse, parents will be contacted and pupils may be required to work from Google Classroom alone.
The video below provides some information about Google Meet.
Sending Work to Teachers
We hope that most work can be done electronically but there are some unavoidable limitations to this.
If pupils have a smartphone, they can sign into their Google Classroom account and use the phone camera to take pictures of work on paper and attach to assignments.
If you have a scanner attached to a different computer in your house, pupils could scan work there and either:
Email it to their school email address and attach it in Classroom
Save it onto a USB stick and upload it on their Chromebook.
Log into Google Classroom on the home computer and attach the scan directly.
For senior pupils completing SQA work only, we may ask for certain pieces to be posted back to the school for marking. Teachers will communicate this directly if required.
Printing At Home
We normally restrict the ability to add additional printers on our Chromebooks but have relaxed this restriction during the shutdown.
For help with this, please see this Google support document:
What to Do If Your WiFi Isn't Working
Most pupils will already have their Chromebook set up for home WiFi but if further help is needed see this Google support document:
If your WiFI fails during the shutdown, it may be possible to use a mobile hotspot on a personal phone to access Google Classroom. We would not recommend joining Google Meet videoconferences over mobile networks unless you have unlimited data. Teachers have been asked to ensure that Google Classroom lessons will contain enough explanation for pupils to work on them without having to be in the videoconference.
Chromebooks are generally quite robust computers. However, things can go wrong.
If your charger stops working: our Chromebooks all charge by USB Type C chargers. The standard charger is a 45W charger but it will be OK to use other chargers of the same type of connector. Many modern laptops charge by USB-C these days. Some mobile phones do too, but it is unlikely that a mobile phone charger will have enough power to keep a Chromebook charged up while in use.
If your Chromebook stops working or gets damaged: If you have access to another home computer, pupils can log into their Google account from any computer and continue to access Classroom, Meet and other Google tools.
If you use the Google Chrome browser on other computers, there is a useful feature called User Profiles that you can use to separate your information and logins from your child's. Please see this Google support document:
We may be able to provide a loan Chromebook if a pupil has no other options for computer access, however a number of our spare Chromebooks are being used by staff during the shutdown. Please email Mr Speirs if you are really stuck.