Monday, 22 August 2016

Student Agency with Google Docs

Google docs are alive and well in the think again classroom. I have been thinking about student agency, personalised learning and authentic engagement. How does one plan for all of this, for every student?

I have been creating google docs for learning, these have a mix of authentic tasks related to the curriculum demands, some photos and/or YouTube snippets which model set learning intentions and direct links to online games where students can practice skills relevant to the learning tasks. I upload them onto the classroom website where students copy them onto their drive and begin working. Some of these slides are also used as the modeling book with small groups.

Here are some sample slides for a writing to persuade model. We used these when unpacking Persuasion as a genre. The students then used these as a self-help guide to check and monitor their own progress when writing independently. I have also copied this onto laminated cards and put it on rings for students to refer to in a hard-copy.

The next slides are slides that the students have used in maths. Again I uploaded onto the class website and the students copied them and saved them onto their own drive for personal use. We used them as modelling books in our small ability based groups, then the students could refer back to the strategies they used when working in mixed ability problem solving groups.

I have found that the students are fully engaged in their learning when using these slides on their devices. They are also thinking more about their learning, their next steps and how to apply their learning in different contexts. A far better sense of student agency.

I have begun to include a student check in on the different slides. This helps the students keep track of the different tasks they complete, what they are finding tricky and need more workshops on and what they have mastered.