Saturday, January 29, 2011

Two Weeks Under Our Belt!

We've been using our Netbooks for two weeks now, and it's going pretty well. We still have some things to set up, but we're not waiting until we're all tweaked to get some work done.

Morning Routine
The students now have a new morning routine, beginning with their email. I've been sending a daily "good morning" email with information they need for that day. After they read their email they write down their assignments, which are available on our school's online calendar. We still write them in a paper planner, as we want to be able to access our assignment when we're offline. However, rather than looking up at the screen in the front of our classroom, students now can access their assignments on the Netbooks. Then, they log into their AR Log, now a Google doc instead of a paper log. When they finish a book they email me and request my electronic "signature" to acknowledge their progress. They keep a record of pages read each day, both in-school and at home. This routine takes up our first 30-40 minutes each day.

Accelerated Reader
We're an AR school, and our kids take AR tests after they finish their books. Before Netbooks, students would have to ask permission to use one of our three desktop computers to take a test. Now, they log in via their Netbook and get the test up and ready. Then, I type in the "monitor password" and they're taking the test. I'm thinking this should improve and increase our test-taking. It sure is more convenient!

Daily Work
We've experimented with our Netbooks for some assignments. I sent a template to the kids via Google docs and they "make a copy" of the document. Then, they "share" it with me and begin their work. So far I've tried a fill-in-the-blanks worksheet where the students fill in the blank with a correct word or phrase. We had a few glitches with Google docs, but otherwise this routine worked. In get all their "papers" via my Google docs "documents" in a list format, and all I do is sort by their filename. I use a format that looks like this: 00paul math page 3. That way, I can sort by their student number from 01 to 25 and easily see who's missing, who turned theirs in, etc. I've used that system with our school's student server for years. Now, it's working well with Google docs, too. Next, we'll try it with Dropbox and Open Office. Stay tuned...

1 comment:

  1. Thw whole idea of asking for electronic signatures is sometimes pissing me off. I hope someone will find a better solution with less fraud and software problems.