C21 Teaching Mid-Semester Two Review

It has been some time since I posted a review of C21Teaching.com.au, so there are quite a few articles in this list. I hope the last two terms have been productive and successful for you and your students.

Don’t forget to visit C21Teaching to get the most up to date content.

FTPL – Multi Visibility

In this episode of Flipped Teacher Professional Learning, I show a very easy to use but useful function for Google Drive that I call Multi Visibility (If it has an actual name, please let me know) that allows you to have a single copy of a document visible in multiple folders. The reason this is so useful as a function is that changes you make to the file are reflected across all versions.

Flipped Teacher Professional Learning Six – Using GDocs in the Classroom Part Two

“It is important to remember that educational software, like textbooks, is only one tool in the learning process. Neither can be a substitute for well-trained teachers, leadership, and parental involvement.”
– Attributed to Keith Krueger

Good morning everyone, it is an early post today, getting in before I head off to school in order to get the latest FTPL video up for everyone, as I did not get it the video recorded until last night, well after I would normally post it. Next week will see a return to your regular programming, with the FTPL video returning to Monday afternoons, and the new series of articles reviewing of Invent to Learn, continuing in its (soon to be) regular timeslot of Tuesday afternoons.

In this video in the FTPL series, we continue looking at how we can utilise GDocs in the classroom, specifically, how to use the live-feedback feature. Please ensure you have watched Video Five in the series before watching this video.

As always, I would appreciate any feedback or questions in the comments.

Teaching Internet Fundamentals Part Three

“Google can bring you back 100,000 answers. A librarian can bring you back the right one.”
― Attributed to Neil Gaiman

Last week I published two articles (here and here) talking about how I planned to explicitly introduce students to the internet, and address misconceptions to ensure that they were all on the same page when it came to understanding the fundamentals of using the internet. I recently delivered the first lesson in the unit to a Year Four class and it went somewhere between poorly and average and was a good way of reminding me that I am not as good or as experienced as I sometimes think that I think I am due to how comfortable and settled I am in the school.

I still firmly believe that the Google Search Engine Lesson Plans (GSELP) are valuable resources, but I think that I need to find a way of resetting my expectations as I move between classes. Being the RFF teacher is a difficult position, moving from class to class and age group to age group, I still get caught out on a semi-regular basis expecting too much of younger students, having just had Stage Three, or, as happened today, going from having Kindergarten to Year Four and adjusting my expectation back up, but adjusting them too far and still expecting too much.

Looking at it now, I structured the lesson poorly and I am fortunate that the students in this class are, on the whole very polite with only a few overly exuberant students. I had the students work through a series of questions to get an understanding of their preconceptions about the internet, writing them down, and then used a class discussion to bring it together, which showed some interesting thoughts from students:

After completing the Padlet, I then went through the presentation that had been put together, after getting students to stand up and stretch and move around. I think that I had effectively lost them by this point and It was not until we got to the Kahoot that I had put together as a summative learning that they perked back up and re-engaged, but it demonstrated that they had not understood what we had discussed, as many of their answers were incorrect.. I have more Stage Two classes tomorrow (as I write this) and I will deliver the lesson very differently to those classes. Just because I am the teacher does not mean I get it right all the time. I just need to be sure that I learn the lesson and get it right the next time.

Tomorrow will be introductory video first, then a slow work through of the questions one at a time, with students identifying their own pre-conceptions and then class discussion and explanation of the meaning before moving onto the subsequent question. I feel that this approach will be more effective and result in the students understanding the concepts more than my students did today.

Flipped Teacher Professional Learning Five – Using GDocs in the Classroom

“Try to learn something about everything and everything about something.”
– Attributed to Thomas Huxley

This video introduces some of the features and ways in which Google Docs can be utilised in the classroom. As always, feel free to ask questions.

Flipped Teacher Professional Learning Three – Introduction to Google Drive

I had planned to post video three in the Flipped Teacher Professional Learning today. Unfortunately I attempted to upgrade my PC to Windows Ten over the weekend, and not only did the upgrade fail, but so did the rollback, and my attempts to reinstall Windows Seven using my boot disc have not been successful thus far. So at this point in time I am not entirely sure when I will be able to get another FTPL uploaded and I had only pre-recorded two videos prior to the upgrade attempt.

My apologies for this, but I will work to get it back up and running as quickly as I am able to.

Delivering Professional Development – Google Docs

“The best part of learning is sharing what you know.”
– Attrbuted to Vaughn K. Lauer

My regular readers would be aware that I am delivering profession development sessions to colleagues around the use of technology in the classroom. This afternoon will be the second session in this series, and will be focusing on developing a greater knowledge in using the Google Apps for Education (GAfE).

Last week, I introduced them to Google Apps for Education, and delivered the session via Google Classroom. This afternoon, I will be spending further time with them looking at ways that Google Drive can be used in conjunction with Google Docs, Google Sheets and Google Slides in the classroom, and as tools for collaboration.

On that note, here are some ways that you can deploy Google Docs in the classroom.

  1. Collaborative story writing: Google Docs can be used by multiple authors at the same time. This creates a scenario where group tasks can be undertaken, with each member actively contributing, making it harder for some students to hide in the mass.
  2. Live Feedback: Google Docs allows you to insert comments on the document, as in MS Word, and this allows you to provide live feedback to students on their writing, whether or not you are in the classroom.
  3. Collaborative Planning: Google Docs can be utilised to to collaboratively plan and develop units of work and programs for Stages, Themed Units and Terms.

Those are a few simple ways that Google Docs can be used.

As always, thank you for reading, and I would like to hear from anyone with ideas on how you use Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Class or Drive in the classroom or for staff Professional Development.