I have been waiting a long time for an accessible digital learning experience to be available for teachers and Google has finally made that happen.
Over the summer, Google revamped its certification courses and created a new set of courses specifically aimed at educators called the Google Certified Educator Level 1 and/or Level 2.. One would expect that these courses were Google-centric, and they are, but they are so much more. The courses offer lessons in general 21st century pedagogy for teaching students and coaching teachers. There are entire sections devoted to Digital Citizenship including copyright and Fair Use. What a pleasant surprise to be exposed to a full spectrum of instruction, hands-on activities, and certification in digital literacy as a whole. Not only do educators learn applications, they also learn how to use the applications purposefully in the classroom
I know there are many districts and principals who are wondering what the next step is for their teachers, teacher leaders, and academic coaches...this is a wonderful step. The curriculum is free - the only thing that isn't is the time it takes to dig in deep and learn these applications. The exams are minimal too- just $10 to take the Level 1 exam and $25 to take the Level 2 exam.
Having Google Certified Educators in your school and district can be a real boon to the community outreach for an area but also, leaders can provide a powerful way to empower their teachers to be comfortable in the classroom and confident to try new things with their students.