The 'ask a question' feature in Google Classroom is a great way to get feedback from your class on a particular issue. It can be used for a quick straw poll on a current issue in the class or as formative assessment on a topic that you're studying. Asking a question is done in your class stream and can be done at any time. When you've asked the question, you can see how many students have and haven't answered. You can decide whether you want students to be able to edit their answers and/or reply to other student's answers.

Ask a question

To ask a question, log into Google Classroom, choose your class and go to the "Class stream" tab. Click on the + sign at the bottom right of the screen and you'll see, nestling amongst the other links, a "Create question" link.

Click on the "Create question" link and the following screen will be displayed. You'll notice that the screen looks very similar to that of the "Create assignment" page and the functionality is very similar too.

Fill in the title of your question as well as the description (which is optional). Next you can choose a due date and time although the default is that the answer is due the next day. As per creating an assignment, you can also choose a document to attach which can be any file type you wish, as well as a Google Drive document, a PDF file or a link to a YouTube video or any web resource.

Upload a file

To upload a file as part of the question, click attach, select the file and click Upload.

Link to a Google Drive item

To link to a Google Drive item (Doc, Sheet, Slide, Form, etc):

  • Click Drive.
  • Locate and select the relevant item and click Add.

If you attach a Drive item that isn't a form, you can decide how students interact with it. Click Students can view file next to the attached item to choose an option:

  • If you want all students to read the same file, but not change it, select Students can view file. -- If you want all students to make changes in the same file, select Students can edit file.
  • If you want each student to have an individual copy of the file that they can change as needed, select Make a copy for each student.

Add a YouTube video

To attach a YouTube video, click Add YouTube video and choose one of these options:

  • To attach a video link: - Click URL. - Enter the link for the YouTube video and click Add.
  • To search for a video to attach: - Click Video search. - Enter keywords in the YouTube search bar. - Click the video that you want to attach and click Add.

Add a link to a web resource

To attach a link, enter the relevant link text and click Add.

(Note: If you decide that you don't need the attachment, click X next to the attachment to delete it.)

If you want to save the question for a later date, click the arrow next to Ask and select Save draft.

To ask the question, click "Ask".

By default, students can see and reply to each other's answers. Uncheck the See and reply to each other's answers box, if needed. Click the Edit their answers box to allow students to edit their answers, if needed.

To confirm and finally post click "Ask".

Note: The draft question is saved and accessible in Drafts in the class stream. When a question is drafted by one teacher and posted by a co-teacher, the teacher posting the question is identified in the class stream as the author of the question.

In the class stream, you can see the number of students who have answered the question or commented on it.

As you can see from the example question I asked my Year 5 maths class above, children posted comments about the question so I asked them to answer the question too. When I click on the actual link (highlighted in red above) it gives me the answers to the question. I can grade the answers, using the grades on the left of the screen and reply individually to each child using the interface on the right. If a child's answer was really long then I can click on their name on the left to open up their complete answer on the right hand side of the screen.

If you used Forms to ask a question, click View responses in Sheets to view a spreadsheet of responses. If the form doesn't have a response sheet, you can create one in Forms.

Note. You can switch between the Question/Student answers using the tabs at the top of the screen.

Edit a question

To edit a question in Google Classroom, sign in to Classroom at classroom.google.com and select the class to open the stream. Next to the question, click options > Edit then make any changes and click Save.

Delete a question

To delete a question in Google Classroom, sign in to Classroom at classroom.google.com and select the class to open the stream. Next to the question, click options > Delete then Delete again to confirm.

Muting students

To mute a student:

Sign in to Classroom at classroom.google.com, click the class and then click the question in the class stream. Next to the student's name, click options > Mute student name and click Mute again to confirm.

To unmute a student:

Sign in to Classroom at classroom.google.com, click the class and then click the question in the class stream. Next to the student's name, click options > Unmute student name and click Unmute again to confirm.


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Gary Hall Gary Hall is based in East Yorkshire, England, and has a background in education, marketing and technology. This site is a collection of ideas and resources on these topics.