As students all over the world were making the transition to online learning last spring, 17-year-old Matěj Krček, a Google Developer Group member, realized that many of his fellow students in Czechia needed tutorials in their native language on how to use Google Workspace.
Matěj usually works on coding and programming projects within his Google Developer Group, a program that connects local developers with similar interests, and it gave him a deep familiarity with Google technologies. He realized that sharing his knowledge with others in their own language was a seemingly small initiative that could have a big impact. So even though it was beyond the scope of the group’s usual activities, he reached out to his local Google Developer Group leads, who helped connect him to the Grow with Google team to produce a series of instructional videos in Czech.
A major focus of Matěj’s videos was helping students replicate their in-person learning experience. So he offered tips on things like digital time management with Google Calendar, how to save and keep track of assignments on Google Drive and best practices for submitting assignments via mobile phones with Google Workspace.
Along with these organizational lessons, Matěj offered tips and tricks for younger students, many of whom were using the internet on their own for the first time. These videos centered on helping them understand proper internet etiquette, how to find supplemental learning materials, and how to work with others virtually.
After his tutorials went live on the Grow with Google website, Matěj had the chance to share his unique lessons on online learning at the Czech Ministry of Education Conference. His talk focused on what practices he had seen particularly help students succeed in this new virtual environment.
He offered meaningful insights from the perspective of a virtual student:
Children are more likely to engage with learning materials and videos made by people their own age.
Students need more independence to manage their time and flexibility when submitting their assignments.
Learning is the easiest when teachers and students are all working from the same applications, platforms and UIs.
Matěj’s insights have clearly resonated in the virtual classroom, with his videos currently having reached over 70,000 views. As Ivana Kopkova, who worked on the project as a member of the Google team, puts it, “Thanks to Matěj’s help starring in our videos, we were able to better understand the needs of students like him and deliver quality video tutorials on our Google YouTube Channel.”
If you’re a developer like Matěj who wants to make a positive difference, learn more about a Google Developer Group near you.