Features and updates
Google + LanSchool: Better Together
Google plays an important role in helping students learn, collaborate, and connect on digital devices. In fact, when it comes to edtech market share, Google Chromebooks comprise about 60% of all education related digital device purchases in the United States due to their affordability, ease of management, and built-in security limitations for students.
Additionally, Google Classroom has over 100 million users, and G Suite for Education has over 120 million users, numbers that both grew substantially during the COVID-19 pandemic as more students began using digital devices.
While Google products address a number of digital learning challenges, LanSchool provides tools focused on helping teachers stay engaged with their students while they’re learning online. With LanSchool, teachers can guide learning and connect with their students in the digital space, whether instruction is happening in the classroom or remotely. Some popular features include the ability for teachers to view their students’ screens in real time, communicate and collaborate with students via chat, and limit the websites students can visit.
Google and LanSchool work together to help schools around the world meet the needs of today’s hybrid and digital classrooms. Here are 5 ways Google and LanSchool can help schools do more:
1. Stretch school budgets further
While most device makers sell their own version of the Chromebook, Lenovo Chromebooks have a key advantage over competitors — they come with a free, one-year license of LanSchool’s classroom management software. Not only does this help schools get more for their budget, it gives them the opportunity to try LanSchool out and prove its value before investing in additional licenses.
It’s hard for us to get funding for software without first knowing the merits. Having the available licenses allowed so many more people to experience LanSchool. And after the success teachers have found with the software, when the free licenses expire, I bet the district is going to allocate budget to purchase licenses going forward.– Nick Chapman, Senior Network Specialist, Waterbury Public Schools
2. Support better visibility while distance learning
Digital learning has created a new set of challenges for teachers when it comes to keeping K-12 students engaged and on track toward their learning goals, especially when students are learning remotely. As students work on assignments on their digital devices, teachers need visibility into how they’re progressing in order to better guide student learning.
Getting students up and running on their home networks is simple if you’re using G Suite. Students can simply sign on to their laptops using their school-managed G Suite accounts and get access to LanSchool Air along with any other apps, extensions, and settings managed through your Google Admin.
Teachers can use LanSchool Air and Google Meet to foster student engagement and help guide progress. Once they have a Google Meet link ready, they can push it to students using LanSchool’s Push Website feature to get everyone on the same page. Then, as students work on their assignments, teachers can monitor their screens to check their progress and send private or group messages to provide additional guidance.
We have a lot of kids who were afraid to turn their camera on [on Google Meet]. They were afraid to unmute and talk. There was no way for me to communicate with them until LanSchool, where they can just send me a private message if they need help.– Lucille Rivera, English Language Arts teacher, Waterbury Public Schools
3. Simplify the implementation process
Adding new software applications or updates to all student devices can be challenging for busy school IT teams, especially when not all devices are located in the same place. Distance learning has made device management much more difficult because schools are limited to management tasks that can be done remotely.
Fortunately, Google Chromebooks are well-known for simplifying management tasks – even if students are in hybrid learning environments. With Google Admin Console, IT admins can install new apps, extensions, and updates across all of their devices. They can also set and enforce 100+ policies and settings, including Wi-Fi and proxy settings and limiting access to authorized users. The console gives teams the granular control to decide if they want to have one group of settings for teachers and another for students, for example.
In addition to being easy to launch using the Google Admin Console, LanSchool syncs with Google Classroom to make class setup easy for teachers. Moreover, as class rosters change, LanSchool will automatically update to reflect new enrollments or transfers, saving teachers time on managing rosters manually.
At first I was concerned because I was worried [LanSchool] would be complicated, but the fact that it synced with Google Classroom made it a million times easier. It took me about 10 minutes to learn it. I instantly figured it out.– Karli Bransteter, Science teacher, Randolph Eastern School Corporation
4. Extend battery life on student devices
Working with digital devices means dealing with technical limitations, such as the device’s battery life. It’s common for students to be caught off guard by a low or dead battery in the middle of a lesson, disrupting teaching time while they find a plug and power their device back on.
With Lenovo’s entry-level Chromebook, students have a battery life of 10 hours, giving them a full day of use without having to disrupt class to charge up. To further minimize disruptions, LanSchool enables teachers to keep an eye on students’ battery status so they can remind students to plug in if they’re getting low on charge.
Having a good battery life is essential because students need the freedom to focus on their work without having to worry about their devices shutting off during a lesson or assignment. The combination of Chromebooks’ long battery life and LanSchool’s ability to help teachers monitor that battery life saves a significant amount of teaching time.– Coby Gurr, General Manager of Lenovo Software
5. Get creative with Google Creativity apps
One of the reasons schools gravitate toward Chromebooks is the limitations on which apps can be downloaded. Fewer downloads mean fewer chances to accidentally download a virus. However, teachers still want their students to have access to a wide range of applications that support creative and collaborative forms of digital learning.
Lenovo Chromebooks give schools access to Google Creativity apps, which enable students to edit videos and photos, write and design books, create music, and more. When they’ve finished their masterpieces, LanSchool makes it easy to collaborate and share with the entire class using the Share Screen feature.
We are teaching the next generation of artists, film makers, entrepreneurs. And to do that we have to allow them to do more creation in the classroom. It’s tools like [the Google Creativity apps] that allow us to get there.-Holly Clark, education thought-leader and best-selling author
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