Written By: Robert Batch
There have been alot of people recently who have come up to me to ask what resources do you use in the classroom, and in ministry. I thought that I would share the top resources (my opinion) that I have found most beneficial. For each resource I will provide you with a link to the website, the cost (if any), and a brief description of how I use it.
#1. Google Drive (Suite)
Google Suite is a multi-faceted resource that can be used for educators, ministries or just for personal use. It includes all of the bells and whistles of Microsoft Office, except it is run online and through Google. Here are the details:
- Google Drive Website
- Can be used for Education & Ministry
- Cost: Free (Unless you would like or need more storage space - there is a minimal fee for this)
- Cool Feature: All of Google Suite has the ability to share documents, and projects with other people so more than one person can work on a project at one time!
- App? Yes, All components of Google Suite can be downloaded as an app. Each individually separate apps. (Cost may vary)
Schoology is a app & a website that is primarily used in the Classroom. I use Schoology for distribution of information & assignments, along with creating class discussion boards for the entire class to participate in an online discussion that connects with the material being covered. The teacher also has the ability to create separate course pages for each section that they are teaching. The students then join the individual course via a "course code" that is provided.
- Website for Schoology
- Used only for Education
- Cost: For the basic version (what I use) it is free. Your school or might decide to upgrade to the premium which there would be a cost associated with this.
- Cool Feature: Schoology is compatible with and integrates smoothly with Google Drive (#1). Allowing you to transfer files, from one platform to another.
- App? Yes, schoology does have a App that is available for dowload. Disclaimer: The app has been known to have some glitches.
#3. Word Press For Education (Blogging Platform)
This is a new feature that I am using in the classroom this year. It is a bit complex, but I have found this platform incredibly useful and incredibly easy to use. The reason I decided to use this platform is to allow my students to have a place where they could have their own voice on certain issues with room for creativity. By doing this, they also will have something (of their own), a compilation of 10 personal blog entries that they can go back to and read over. This was coupled with a requirement to participate in 10 Class wide Discussion Boards (Schoology). Many people will ask, well what is the difference? The blogs are only shared with me (the teacher) and the discussion boards are classwide. Here are some points to consider.
- Website for Blogs for Education
- Used Only For Education. However Blogging is great for ministry as well! (Just not this platform)
- Cost: For the basic version it is free. However I pay 7.99 per month for some basic and useful features for having multiple classes use this platform. (Worth It)
- Click here for various plans & pricing.
- App: Unfortunately there is no mobile app for this platform. However the web version works splendidly!
- Cool Feature: The teacher has complete control over content and what is published for security and safety reasons!
To be 100% honest with you, I was never a big fan of Twitter. However now that I have been using it as a tool rather than a toy it has made a world of difference. Twitter allows me to connect with the students outside of the classroom, knowing that all of them are on their phone or infront of a screen at some point during the day. (Especially on Weekends, and Spring Break!) Here are some points to consider.
- Can be used for Education & Ministry
- Cost: Twitter is free!
- App: Yes, just like all other popular social media platforms there is an app
- Suggested Point: For Student safety, and protecting you as a educator and minister, only allow students to follow your profile. Do not follow them back! Related to this would be your profile privacy. I have chosen to keep my profile public. Again paying close attention to who is following me, commenting, and liking.
- Want to follow me? Click here.
Again, these are resources that have worked for me inside and out of the classroom & ministry settings. I hope they can be of use to you as well as we work in the vineyard together cultivating the soil! May God Bless You!
About The Author
Robert Batch holds a degree in Communications with a Minor in Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville, and is currently pursuing a M.A. in Theology online through Franciscan. He has a passion for speaking, lecturing, and teaching about the faith. He currently resides in Southern California with his wife Amanda.