Gooru Aims To Become The iTunes Of Standards-Based Learning

If you’ve ever had trouble organizing your notes, lectures, resources, and other teaching tools… get ready for some help. Gooru is a free platform for both students and teachers that offers access to standards-based online resources in organized playlists.

How It Helps Students

Dreamed up by a Google employee during his ’20% time’ and run by the non-profit Ednovo, Gooru lets students access ‘classbooks’ which are essentially a collection of textbooks, videos, tests, and much more. Best of all, these classbooks are on any topic and offer tools to let students share and interact with the resources.

How It Helps Teachers

Teachers can search for standards-based web tools and organize them into ‘classplans.’ These can be customized and shared with other teachers so they can be tweaked and basically benefit as many people as possible.

Like iTunes

So why is it like iTunes, you may ask? Simple. It lets you organize your teaching resources into playlists, share them (like you would with iTunes Ping), and quickly access various forms of multimedia with minimal effort. It even has a powerful search functionality that lets you surface the best tools you’re looking for.

20,000+ Resources Waiting For You

I had the opportunity to play around with Gooru (you have to request access here) and the amount of resources is staggering. There are currently nearly 20,000 different resources being shared, 1200+ lesson plans, and more.

Gooru is for teachers and students who want to do a better job of organizing and finding learning tools. The best part of Gooru, to me, is the idea of organizing your resources into playlists. It’s a familiar method of organization and lets you keep track of all manner of multimedia.

There are also upcoming features like the ability to highlight websites and save them to your ‘drawer’ much like Evernote or Diigo. Overall, Gooru is slightly different from Edmodo and worth checking out.

Here’s a bit more explanation from Gooru (marketing speak ahoy!) and a couple handy videos to further illustrate how Gooru works. Enjoy!

For Teachers

The Search For Teachers

Gooru is a free platform for 21st century teachers and students. We offer a powerful tool for discovering complete lesson plans and curating content. Our comprehensive lesson plans made from interactive web materials bring the classroom to life. By offering these standards-aligned classplans and helping teachers find the best materials, assembling lesson plans is no longer a burden. This lets the teachers do what they do best. Teach.

Search

Search for standards-aligned Classplans by subject, grade, and topic. Results come in multiple flavors: My Classplans, Gooru Classplans, and Best of the Rest. My Classplans are Classplans you have already made, Gooru Classplans are teacher-curated lessons that have been vetted by our team of content experts, and Best of the Rest are Classplans that other users have created that have been socially ranked by the community. Gooru also has it’s own Custom EDU Search that lets you perform a Google search that is restricted to vetted educational websites so that you don’t have to wade through all the results that a normal search provides.

Customize

Each Classplan contains rich web resources, lesson plans, detailed descriptions of teaching topics and attributes such as grade, subject, unit, and topic. Copy any lesson you see in Gooru to conveniently access all of the web materials associated with the lesson and customize it to your needs. Upload your own lesson plan, drag and drop resources, reorder segments and upload video recordings of yourself by segment to share your teaching style with the world.

Share

Share the lessons and resources you’ve used with other teachers to enrich the community. See what resources others are using, follow colleagues’ Classplans, comment on resources that you like, and ask questions about teaching styles. Connect with a whole community of educators around standards-aligned web resources organized into Classplans.

Teach

Any Classplan found through Gooru search is immediately teachable. Click to move through a playlist of web resources in the classroom, or open the right drawer to see a table of contents organized as thumbnails. These resources come in a variety of forms and are standards-aligned to bring relevant classroom learning to life. We currently support PDFs, YouTube videos, Flash Animations, Google Earth videos, Custom Questions, images, and links to websites.

For Students

The Classmate Hub

Gooru is a free platform for 21st century teachers and students. Students can use this tool to engage with an adaptive peer-enriched study guide. Students will also connect with their peers to ask and answer questions, interact with each other, enriching their study materials to help each other better learn.

Search

Search for comprehensive study guides to learn any topic of your choice. Gooru organizes search results into complete learning experiences, making it effortless to find free high-quality resources and educational materials. Resources are vetted and annotated by the community and are suggested based on your personal learning style.

Assessment

Online assessments allow students to measure how well they have learned the material without the pressure of in-class tests. Assessments can be used anytime the student wants to test his or her knowledge and can be accessed throughout a unit or before or before a test, allowing students the opportunity to learn and improve outside of the classroom.

Digital Notes

Students take notes as they read and work on assignments. Taking notes through Gooru allows students’ notes to be accessible from anywhere. Classmates can also share notes remotely, allowing for students learn from each other even after school. These notes go beyond regular notes though as they can point to specific sections of a book, different times in a video, or different questions in an assessment.

Study

Students have access to a personalized study shelf that displays their study-guides of choice. Guides include digital textbooks, classroom videos, projects, online assessments, and games that correspond to their grade and subject. Students can also customize their study-guides to fit their learning style and pursue further enrichment material. Teachers and peers can annotate the resources, post questions, or chat creating an open community to promote learning.