Monday, November 7, 2011

Google+ Pages - Use Google+ to Connect With Your Community

Today, Google launched Google+ Pages. I created a Google+ Page for Free Technology for Teachers. If you're inclined to, I'd love to have you connect with me there. Now that I've gotten that bit of self-promotion out of the way, let's look at what Google+ Pages is.

Google+ Pages provides a way for businesses and organizations to connect with their audiences. Much like Facebook Pages, people can choose to follow a Google+ Page to receive updates from that organization and connect through conversations with that organization. Unlike a Facebook Page, on a Google+ Page you can host a public hangout to video chat with your community of followers. You can watch an overview of Google+ Pages in the video below or jump down to read my thoughts about using Google+ Pages in schools.


Applications for Education
My initial thought upon learning of the launch of Google+ Pages is that they could be a good tool for schools to use to connect with parents and other community members. Then I started to think about school-affiliated organizations like PTAs and booster's clubs that could use Google+ Pages to connect with their communities. Both types of groups could use the public hangout option to host small, live discussions with interested community members.

Down the road as more students start to use Google+, Google+ Pages could be used by teachers to create course pages through which students could ask questions in writing or in a hangout.

If you want to try to create a Google+ Page of your own right now, you can do so here.