Microsoft announces new Teams for Education features including Reading Progress and Group assignments

Laurent Giret

Microsoft Teams Education

Microsoft announced this morning new Teams for Education features to make the hybrid learning experience more engaging. As studies have pointed out that the ongoing pandemic has negatively affected student’s reading ability, Microsoft is adding a free Reading Progress feature in Teams for Education to help students practicing their reading skills.

“Reading Progress in Teams supports students in building fluency through independent reading practice, educator review, and educator insights,” explained Mike Tholfsen, Product Manager on the Microsoft EDU team. “Educators can upload a single reading fluency assignment or differentiate for their class’ many levels. Students read their passages out loud, creating an audio/video recording teachers can access and review at their convenience.”

Microsoft is currently testing Reading Progress in private preview with thousand of educators, and the company expects to make it generally available on Desktop, web, Mac, iOS and Android in August 21. You can learn more about the new feature in the video below.

Microsoft Teams for Education will also get new tools to improve student engagement in the classroom. With Group Assignments, group of students will get the opportunity to collaborate and submit just one assignment for the whole group, while educators will be able to either give individual comments and grades or group grades.

With Calendar sync for Teams assignments, students will also be able to see their planning and assignments in their Teams and Outlook calendars. Microsoft will also allow educators to issue assignments from various third-party EDU apps in Teams, as well as Microsoft’s own Whiteboard app.

All these new Teams for Education features will be available ahead of the next school year, Microsoft announced today. On its Education blog, the software giant also highlighted 35+ new features in Teams to get excited about now through August, and the list includes previously announced tools such as Career Coach and Immersive Reader.