Chromebooks getting advanced ‘Screencast’ app and ‘Cast moderator’ with Google TV in schools

Chromebook Screencast app cover

As the current school year winds down, Google is getting ready for the next one with a number of education updates across Classroom, Workspace, and Chromebooks, like the Screencast app and Cast moderator on Google TV.

Screencast app 

Chromebooks are building on the existing Screen capture tool (found in Quick Settings or via keyboard shortcut) with a Screencast app that’s essentially a full-blown service. 

This application has its own (green) launcher icon and shows all your previously recorded screencasts on the homescreen. After tapping “New screencast” in the top-left corner, the display – along with your face and voice – are recorded. There’s a marker tool to point at and highlight content as you go.

After the screencast is stopped, Google will transcribe spoken words and upload to Google Drive for easy sharing within a school. Viewing a screencast shows video at the left and the transcript, which can be edited and trimmed by teachers, next to it.

After you’ve recorded your video, add screenshots and resources to make the content even more engaging. You can even draw or write on the video using a touchscreen or stylus to diagram or highlight key concepts.

Chromebook Screencast
Chromebook Screencast

Screencast is useful for teachers making lesson plans, while students can use it to make video reports. The watching experience is further boosted by transcript search and translation.

This Screencast app is rolling out to Chromebooks with version 103.

Cast moderator

The other big upgrade is “Cast moderator” for “secure, wireless casting” specifically aimed at classroom usage. Teachers and students can share the screen of their Chromebook or desktop Chrome browser to a supported Google TV device, which will display a six-digit secure access code to prevent disruptive or unintended screen sharing. 

Educators can also stop any casting session from their device with a pilot program beginning this summer. 

Chromebook Cast moderator

Other announcements – some previously detailed – from Google’s The Anywhere School 2022 event include:

  • Upcoming Google Meet features:
    • For Workspace Education Plus and the Teaching and Learning Upgrade:
      • Livestream watchers can participate in Q&As and polls instead of only Meet attendees. 
      • Auto-transcribe Meet calls directly into a Google Doc.
      • Livestream public events directly to YouTube, which is ideal for school assemblies and board meetings. 
    • Picture-in-picture
    • Additional Meet safety controls 
  • Google Classroom
    • Practice sets 
    • Third-party integrations
      • IXL add-on: Browse content by skill level or subject, then preview the skill before attaching to an assignment.
      • Pear Deck add-on: Create engaging assignments by developing or adding lessons from Pear Deck’s library of content.
      • EdPuzzle add-on: Assignments are integrated into Classroom’s gradebook, giving teachers a detailed view of each students’ performance. Certain question types can be automatically graded and teachers can leave feedback before returning a grade to students.
    • Elevate Data Sync for student information system (SIS)
    • Building out Originality reports database 

Google also said its prioritizing top Classroom-related feature requests like improving the YouTube experience, grade export, and notifications:

  1. It’s now easier to find, evaluate, and add YouTube videos into your lessons from Classroom with larger thumbnail images and the ability to filter videos by duration. And when you or your students are watching a video, you’ll see a larger video player.
  2. We’ve added action-oriented messages that guide teachers as they sync grades with their SIS.
  3. Our notification emails are getting a refresh, so teachers and students can quickly scan emails and find key information. Later this year, teachers will even be able to reply to students from within their email notifications in Gmail. And for those of you who access Google Classroom on your mobile device, we’re adding email settings functionality – so that everyone can now tailor notification settings for both email and push notifications.

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