Google has revolutionized the way I teach and I have never looked back. With technology like Google, you are able to save time and transform your teaching practices. But why get Google certified? To learn and teach. Being Google certified will help you have the skills to effectively use Google for Education in the classroom. Maybe you already know the basics, but taking the time to gain certification will certainly teach you a few tricks that you hadn’t discovered.
Being Google certified will also allow you to help colleagues more effectively use G Suites for Education. Most people resist change, but if you can show them how much Google simplifies the communication and collaboration process they might be willing to try something new.
If you’re like me and love all things Google becoming certified is the next step. And if you’re like me and follow along with the Google Teacher Tribe podcast you already know that Kasey Bell has Google Certification courses available. Participating in a course guarantees that you will gain the skills needed to pass the exam and give you a chance to practice.
If you’re new to this idea let me breakdown each of the certifications and what you can gain from joining a course then taking the exams.
Level 1 Certification: For the teacher who wants to successfully integrate G Suites for Education into their teaching practices. This level covers the basics of each Google tool that can be used in the classroom.
Level 2 Certification: For the teacher who feels comfortable using G Suites in their classroom but would like to take it to a more advanced level. A deeper dive into each of the tools.
Google Certified Trainer: For the teacher who enjoys teaching other teachers. This certification is open to any educator who would like to share what they have learned at the first two levels with other educators.
Google Certified Innovator: For the teacher who is developing their own innovative ways to use Google in the classroom.
Why become certified?
There is more to Google certification than the badge that can be added in your email signature and social media accounts. Certification is about your own education as an educator. If anyone understands the concept of life-long learning it’s teachers. One of the reasons we continue to teach is because we enjoy being learners ourselves. In the 21st century, technology has transformed the way we present information to students and how they demonstrate their learning to us. Google is not exclusive to the classroom. Many companies use G Suites for business purposes as well. Allowing students to gain these skills before entering the workplace gives them an advantage.
Many teachers are already using G Suites in their classrooms without becoming officially certified. So why spend the time and money to work towards certification?
1. Proficiency: Have you ever thought while planning your unit, there has to be a way for me to do this more efficiently? I know I have! Then you find yourself spending countless hours looking for the right answer. Taking the certification courses and becoming certified means you will have that answer right away. In fact, it will most likely give you new and improved ideas for delivering your content.
2. Effectiveness: Turning a handout into a Google Doc is not what G Suites is all about. The technology is not meant to replace, it’s meant to enhance. What you will learn through the course of gaining certification will help you to better know the possibilities of each tool and how to effectively use them in the classroom.
3. Networking: Join a large community of other certified educators who can provide you with support and help when you need it. Connecting with other educators is the best way to grow your creativity as a teacher.
Now that you’ve decided to go ahead with the process of becoming Google certified there are a few things that you may want to consider. First, consider taking one of Kasey’s courses to help you prepare for the exam. Sure, it’s possible to gather the knowledge you need from the Google training materials available. However, it will take a lot of reading and searching for answers all on your own without any help.
Taking Kasy’s course will give you exactly what you need to practice for the exam. She provides videos and documents, plus you can always ask her or the Facebook group specific questions if you’re having trouble.
Choosing a course such as these allows you to work at your own pace and on your own time schedule. Joining a scheduled Boot Camp that might be offered by your district will also give you the information you need to pass each exam. However, there is a lot to know and possibly learn. These face-to-face courses are only offered on a specific day and time so they may move too quickly for some people.
Before you make a decision about how to gain your certification take a look at Kasey’s post with frequently asked questions for more information. You will also find several resources she provides and details about each of the Google Certification courses she offers twice a year — May and November.
When you have successfully passed your exam and gained your certification be sure to brag in the comments.