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10 Cool Ways to Use Slack in Class

With the influx of new tools these days to facilitate team communication, Slack has risen to become a favorite among companies, student organizations, and even some classrooms. This article will enumerate some Slack's unique features that can enhance your class's learning and general tips for onboarding onto a perhaps unfamiliar platform.

FREE FEATURES

1. Create channels for related media/career opportunities. Even add RSS feeds to pin blog/news feeds to the workspace.

2. Use polls to get feedback more often and see what topics students want covered more.

3. Pin most important announcements and resources.

4. Enable syncing with Google Drive and Dropbox to enable file sharing and discussion within channels. Even Zoom! (which can take meeting notes for you)

5. Set deadline reminders with SlackBot. Even add Google Calendar to sync up your events directly into students' calendars so they don't need to update manually.

PAID FEATURES

6. Create forms for students to respond to or submit updates/project proposals, and react to the submissions.

7. Speaking of, you can also set up custom workflows that, for example, bring up feedback templates when another student reacts to a message, and sending complete forms back to the messages's author.

GENERAL TIPS

8. Look for advice from other educators who've used Slack! The number one issue seems to be getting everyone properly onboarded and participating, so during Week 1, all students should be required to register and continuous participation should be rewarded.

9. The more of the class you transition onto Slack, the more likely students will be to fully utilize it as a resource. That includes announcements, calendars, questions, and more.

10. Assume your class has no pre-existing experience with Slack and build a logistics standard from the ground-up. That includes explaining how each of your channels ought to be utilized (give examples of different posts and where they should belong!) and also try to keep general messages to a minimum, as un-reads can pile up and get accidentally ignored, especially if students don't stay logged-on 24/7.

That's all for basics, and Slack is always updating their software to be more fluid and interactive. Do some testing yourself to see what works best for your class, and reap the benefits of a more interactive, engaged classroom community!

Credits:

https://blog.polleverywhere.com/slack-classroom/ https://slackhq.com/workflow-builder-templates-remote-teams https://slackhq.com/simpler-more-organized-slack https://slack.com/slack-tips https://medium.com/bucknell-hci/how-i-use-slack-in-my-courses-a-3-year-reflection-888c7e742d04