Creating a New Class

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Note:  the schedule options shown in the video below have been re-named to Standard and Alternating, to better represent the differences between the 2 options.

Watch the short video below to learn how to use TechSmart's Class Setup Wizard.

Double-click the video to make it full screen, or access it on Vimeo here.

Transcript:

Let’s learn how to create a class in the TechSmart platform. To begin, sign in to TechSmart using your teacher account, this will bring up a list of classes if you have any already. To create a new class, click on the add class button in the top right corner of the screen. This launches the class setup wizard. To create your class, you will need 4 sets of details. First, you will choose which TechSmart course you are teaching and give it a name, you will set the start and end date of your class, and check any dates that students won’t be in school. You’ll set the day to day schedule for your course, including days of the week and timing on those days. And optionally, you will import a list of students in your class. Let’s begin.

School

First, choose the school you are teaching at, if you don’t see your school listed here, use the Live Support resource in the bottom right corner to get that sorted out. I’m going to choose TechSmart middle school. Choose which period your class runs, and give it a name. I’ll call mine, "Coding in Python". Set the year for your class, and optionally give it a term as well. 

Co-Teacher

If you have a co-teacher, add their email address here so they can modify the class along with you. Choose the TechSmart course for your class, if you have more than one, make sure to choose the one you will be teaching in this class. 

Default Difficulty

Next, set the default difficulty levels for the different activity types. They all begin at level 2 or level 3, but you are free to lower the difficulty or increase the difficulty based on the needs of your students. You can update this info at a later time as well as customize it per student once your class is created. I will change my coding exercises difficulty levels to level 3. 

Start Course At

You can choose to start your course at any lesson in this course. If it’s a later course, you can choose to include some earlier lessons for review, or if you didn’t quite cover all the content in the previous course. 

Class Start/End Date

Choose the start and end date of your class, my class is going to start in early September and end in late January. 

Non-Teaching Days

If you have some non-teaching days be them holidays, winter break or spring break, you may see them listed here already based on your school setup. If not, you can choose to add any non-teaching days you want whether those are single day or a range of days. 

Schedule

Please select a layout for your class. Most classes use the Standard layout. 

Standard Schedule Setup

If you select the Standard option, you will be prompted to answer more questions about your schedule. Click yes to this question, choose the days of the week that your class meets, and the time of those classes. I’m going to say my class meets Mondays and Wednesdays from 1pm to 2pm. If your class doesn’t meet on the same days every week, instead choose no and fill out the details that show up. If there are one-off days that you are going to meet that you want to add now, you can say yes to add some custom schedules, otherwise to keep things simple, let’s click on no. 

Alternating Schedule Setup

If you select the Alternating option, you will not need to fill out any more information about your class. The lesson plan layout will be a baseline starter layout that alternates between teacher synchronous instruction days and student self-guided independent asynchronous activity days. 

Roster

If you have a list of students available for your course, you can choose to import your roster now. There are two options. You can either download the roster template in excel format or open the roster template in google sheet format. 

Download Roster Template

If you choose to download the roster template, you can edit the template with the spreadsheet editor of your choice. You’ll need student’s first name, last name and student ID. Let’s say I have two students, Kayla Walkins with student ID 345 and Robert Baker with student ID 678. If I save this spreadsheet as an excel formatted workbook, I will be able to upload that file to the platform to import my list of students. You’ll see confirmation that these users were created. By default, their username are set to their ID. the extension of your school, in my case, ts for TechSmart middle school. 

Open Template in Google Sheet

If you choose to open the roster template in google sheet format, you will fill out the spreadsheet with the students info and download it as an excel formatted workbook and then upload it to the platform. 

Summary

Once I finish entering those details, I can confirm everything that I see. If I need to go back and edit a specific section I can click on the edit button. But assuming everything looks good go ahead and click on create class. This will bring you to the calendar of your class as well as add this class to your list of classes. 

Thanks for watching. 

 

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