In part one I outlined how we trained staff to become familiar with the Chromebook and Google Apps for Education (GAFE). Building on this foundation, we wanted to ensure that staff were able to use the device to enhance student feedback and formative assessment.
Most staff have only worked in a very traditional Windows domain environment, where the electronic work of students was kept in their personal network drives or USB storage devices. Thus, staff were reliant on students to print and e-mail work (with an emphasis on print…) in order to track student progress and to offer feedback. It’s not an efficient system and, in reality, it gives lazy students more opportunities to hide.
The feedback potential of GAFE therefore presents a paradigm shift for staff. It offers staff the ability to drop in and check on the work and progress of students at any time as students continually save their work to the cloud. More importantly, it allows staff to intervene and to comment on work at any time. We considered using Google Classroom to manage this system, but before the Classroom API was released we feared that an additional system would be too much for all staff to become familiar and engaged with. Perhaps rightly, or wrongly, we didn’t expect staff, including many who are new to GAFE, to spend time getting their classes signed up and registered. Google Classroom is really easy to use, but we wanted a system that was already set up for staff. This year, we’re getting students to share work folders with teachers as they sign up and then instructing teachers on how to organise these folders. This way work is shared with teachers from the very start of the academic year. We could have gone either way with this decision, but next year, I suspect we’ll use classroom given the obvious benefits. However, Google Classroom is available on our domain for anyone who wishes to try it out this year!
In an earlier post in which I outlined the objectives of our 1:1 programme, I explained how we wanted to improve formative assessment. Therefore we included elements in the training which explored how this can be achieved using Socrative and Nearpod.
Thus, our second training session was complete. We covered feedback, tracking and formative assessment using Chromebooks. While there’s a range of other tools that we could use, for the time being, we wished to stick with just Google Drive, Docs, Sheets and Slides.
As before, you can download the handout that we used in the training session by clicking here. The slides we prepared are below, so please feel free to edit them, or to copy any content that you may wish to use: