Monday, 19 March 2012

A big day on Google Docs

Today has to be one of the busiest in my time of using Google Docs.
I have a full year 11 Biology class using it to write an essay.
The students who are keen are using it to the full and are working with me to hone the content of their essays.
I think they really like the feedback they are getting and, by and large respond positively and actively to it.
On the other hand, there are a few holdouts who seem to prefer to keep their essay writing private.
I suspect that there are some who have no idea how to write an essay and will pull something out of thin air at the last minute. These are students who will plagiarise and hope to get away with it.
I could help them if they were open to it but I suspect that they are not looking for my help.

At the same time, my Year 9 class is both putting their Maths homework into a significant document that ultimately will become a revision document. Again, most of the class participate and I get a lot of out of the process because I get 'feedback' on how they are understand key concepts.
[As an aside - the homework consists of them describing their understanding of key concepts covered in class].
There are still some who are not participating and these 'hard nuts' are running out of excuses. I intend to meet with the parents of one student and I will show them how much homework he is (not) doing. This should help reduce the mystery of what this student does when they "study" even further.

Finally, the same class is putting work onto Google Docs in teams. They are working on the storyboard for a video on one Science concept to do with Light or Sight. Today I showed them how to use Screenr to capture their work and create a video out of it.  They have put their research onto the Docs and I have already graded their efforts.

The thing I like about Google Docs is that I can give feedback when I am ready and anywhere where there is a computer with access to the Internet.

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