Friday, July 22, 2011

Teacher Dashboard + Google Apps for Education

We have been using Google Apps for Education at Pt England School for 3 years now. Russell signed us up when we were at the GooglePlex in California in 2008 - how's that for sitting right next to the help desk!

We began our implementation in a leisurely fashion, bringing onboard those who always put their hand up for new things first and then supporting the rest of the team to start using it.  But it was when the students became Google Apps users that the fun began because everyone was so keen. And the teacher's Google Docs home pages were swamped with documents shared by eager students.

We were very fortunate to meet up with Jan Zawadzki early in this journey and hear about Teacher Dashboard which his company, Hapara, was designing as an add on to Google Apps.  And we were quite vocal in telling him our ideas about how it could be improved to make our teaching lives easier! We get so many questions about it from other educators that we finally got round to putting this video together to give a Pt England School perspective on how we are using Teacher Dashboard.


  1. Perfect post and video, Dorothy. I was aiming to get Dashboard but this video has cemented my intent to follow through and get it. Your video clearly explains Dashboard and the benefits and showed me new things I was unaware of. Well done.

  2. Glad to hear that it makes sense Regan! You need to step back and see it through someone else's eyes to know if you are connecting the dots adequately. Good luck with your own implementation.

  3. This is really fantastic and definitely what we need. I have been managing Google Apps for our Year 8's this year and this is the level of control I have been missing, I especially thought the function of pre-setting up shared students collections is great.

    You mentioned it has a Blogger aspect, does this make it easier to set up and manage individual student Blogger blogs, posts and comments as well?

  4. @MrWoodNZ It sure is 'the missing piece'. Unfortunately at this stage you have to set up the students blogs manually (this seems to be an issue at the Blogger end) but once you invite a student to author their own blog using their own G Apps email address, their posts, drafts and comments show up on the Teacher Dashboard. Very convenient :)

  5. Very impressive tool. It looks very well thought out. I am going to check this out in more detail.

  6. Many thanks Dorothy to you and the Pt. England team - you've been instrumental in getting Teacher Dashboard off the ground and it's been wonderful working with you.

    As pointed out elsewhere, additional information about Teacher Dashboard is available at

    Thanks again!

    Jan & the Hapara team

  7. Wow that's awesome to see. I hope that google teacher apps makes its way into tertiary institutions. I'm using it for my planning to show visiting lectures but at this stage the rest of the documentation for Teaching Experience still needs to be filled out by hand and put into the the dreaded ringbinders.

    Great to see what can be done and am filing this away for when I become a real teacher.

  8. This is so cool and interesting! I am taking EDM 310 at the University of South Alabama in the United States and as a class requirement, I am now using Google Docs (for the first time). I absolutely love it and I can't imagine how I lived life without it all these years! I also think the Teacher Dashboard app is so great because it gives teachers and students better access to one another in a convenient and more organized way. Teachers have so much on their plate nowadays so the Dashboard would definitely come in handy and is less of a hassle.

  9. What a wonderful program. I was not aware Google had so much to offer until I started taking my EDM 310 class at the University of South Alabama. The Teacher Dashboard looks like a wonderful tool that I hope to be able to implement when I get into the classroom. The ability to easily flow from student to student looks incredible. This app will save so much time for future teachers, and allow them to provide even better instruction for their students.

    Thanks for sharing this!

    Justin Cometti

  10. The teacher dashboard is such a cool thing. I had no idea how many helpful tools google had to offer until I started EDM 310 at the University of South Alabama. I have found google docs to be so helpful to me this semester. I think the teacher dashboard is a good way for teachers to keep up with their students as well as keep an eye on them. It is also any easy way for teachers and students to have access to their work from anywhere. I hope to be able to use this tool when I get into the classroom. I think it will be very helpful to me as well as to my students. Thank you for sharing this video!
    Brianne Woods

  11. I was first introduced to Google Docs this semester in EDM310 at the University of South Alabama and I love it. I did not realize that Google had this much to offer! The teacher dashboard looks awesome and very helpful. It seems to be a big help in staying organized and keeping up with students and their work. This app will definitely help me in my future as a teacher. Thank you for this post!

    Ashley Howard

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