Google Forms are one of my FAVORITE teacher tools. There are lots of reasons to embrace using them, but the biggest one, in my opinion, is that they can save you time. Anything that saves time in the classroom is something worth trying. When you share a Google Form it collects responses automatically. The responses can be viewed easily. You can also download them to a Google Sheet. 

Don't worry if you aren't sure where to start. I've got you covered. Here are some of my favorite ways to use Google Forms in the classroom. 

I used to send home paper copies on the first day of school. It would take days or even weeks to get all of the information back. Now I can share a link with parents in an email or during Open House. It is faster for parents and me!

I enjoy having parents volunteer in my classroom. A Google Form is a great way to organize this information. Parents can select areas they would be comfortable volunteering and days that they are available. 

This is part of a Google Form that I use to ask for classroom volunteers.
If you are interested in trying this out but don't have time to create them don't worry! You can grab mine for FREE here. 

Using a Google Form for a quiz or test is a game-changer! Google Forms will automatically grade short answer and multiple-choice questions. This saves time when grading. I look at the data from the Google Form and then know which questions I need to focus on when looking at the assessment.
This is one question from a decimal quiz. 

Once an assessment is created in Google Forms it can be used over and over. Questions can be added or deleted easily. It is also very easy to modify an existing assessment for differentiation. Make a copy of the quiz, change the title, change the questions to be easier or more challenging, and done!

I love using digital exit tickets because I can quickly scan the data and group students that need help with a concept.

Exit tickets questions using Google Forms can be created directly in Google Classroom, too! 

I do this a lot in my class. We vote on the next read-aloud book or theme for a class celebration. We even voted for our March Madness Book Tournament using Google Forms. I like using Google Forms for votes in the classroom because each student votes for the choice wanted instead of voting for what a friend wants. 

There are so many ways to use Google Forms in the classroom! How do you use them in the classroom? Leave a comment below and let me know. 

Building a classroom community is one of the most important things for teachers to think about at the start of a school year. Successful classroom communities begin by forming positive relationships with students. For that to happen, you have to really get to know your students and let them get to know you. This takes time and effort. Here are some of my favorite ideas to get you started. 

I start by modeling the activity. I present three things I want my students to know about me. I tell them some things about myself that they wouldn't already know.  They are usually surprised and interested in what I chose to tell them. Next, each student writes three things that they want me to know about them. 

I love this activity because it is open-ended and it allows students to choose what they want to share without having to talk in front of a group. Some students will write about their hobbies, pets, and friends. Others will share strengths and weaknesses.  

I use the writing to help find common interests and connections between the students. I am also able to find ways to connect with students that I wouldn't have known before. 

On the first day of school, I ask each student to create an emoji that would represent his/her personality. Students brainstorm on a plain piece of paper and then create a big emoji out of construction paper. 
Bulletin Board decorated with student created emojis.

Once the emojis are created, students write about it. They explain each feature and how it represents their personality. This activity gives me a glimpse of how my students view themselves. And, it makes an amazing bulletin board for Open House Night. 

I start this activity by having students brainstorm a list of fun things they did during the summer break. I remind students that simple memories are just as important as vacations.

 Each student lists nine fun things they did during the summer break. Then the students will create a "Summergram" grid with nine pictures to represent the activities and plan a "Summergram" post. This activity can also be turned into a cute bulletin board. 
Wooden table with summergram craftivity completed.

I love this activity because it generates a lot of conversation. The students talk about what they did and how they are going to draw it. I circulate around the room asking questions and sharing observations. Grab this Summergram activity here

Building relationships with students takes time, but it is well worth the effort. These positive relationships will help your classroom community to grow. 

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