Colleen Gorski | Staff Writer
Mason Middle School has two knew students: Schoology and Google Classroom.
Laura Reed, an eighth grade Language Arts teacher, has used both websites and prefers Classroom, but uses a balance of both.
“I like to use Classroom for more of the practice activities, and Schoology for the graded activities because it will upload to the gradebook on Schoology,” Reed said. “Classroom is more user friendly, but Schoology has a built in gradebook.”
Reed said Classroom is easier to access for students and teachers.
“I think Classroom is easier for the students because everyone gets their own copy of the assignment,” Reed said. “Also with the new topic filter, (Classroom) is easier to organize.”
Lin said she likes how students can get feedback right away on Schoology.
“I know they’re more comfortable with Edline because I have eighth graders so they’ve been using Edline for their whole educational career, that I think in the long run, Schoology will be better,” Lin said. “I think after this first year everyone is going to be like ‘Edline who?’”
Daniel Little is also an Innovative Learning Coach for Mason City Schools, and says his purpose is to support teachers in using technology in meaningful ways to engage learners in the classroom.
“(Innovative Learning Coaches’) main purpose is helping to support innovation in the classroom so that we can help teachers provide their kids with amazing learning experiences.” Little said. “Right now we’re doing a lot supporting of teachers and learning the new technology because Schoology is not only new to the kids, but it’s new to the teachers and parents as well”
Edline was going to stop supporting Mason City Schools, so there was a need to switch to a different system, Little said.
“The district really needed a place for the grades to go,” Little said. “Schoology works really well with our database that houses all (the school’s) information.”
Randy Doughman, one of the people behind the reason the district moved to schoology, said Classroom was more interactive than Edline, and Classroom was the reason for the switch.
“Classroom expedited the need to move from Edline. Teachers were starting to use Google Classroom instead of Edline because of the more interactive features that were available within Classroom,” Doughman said. “We had actually wanted to do it a year from now, but because of the inoperability at times of Edline and the problems we were having with it, it expedited the move to Schoology.”
Roberts wanted people to be aware that the teachers are still learning too.
“Be patient with teachers. We see students learning a lot;sometimes our students assume our teachers know everything,” Roberts said. “(It is) just like walking into a woodshop for the first time, and there’s a saw, and there’s a drill, and there’s a sander and you don’t know how to build a table yet. So they’re trying to learn how to build a table, once they know how to build a table, they’re going to learn to build some chairs, and they’re gonna make some really great stuff for you guys.”