Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Partner Acrostic Planning and Writing on Google Drawing - Successes And An Oops

Collaboration Time

I wanted to begin to use the collaboration aspects of Google Apps for Education (GAFE) with my grade twos. Until now, most of the work they have done with GAFE has been individual. Part of the reason they have not collaborated with GAFE is skill development. I wanted to build their skills as technology users before adding another complicating factor. 


The Plan

I made a Google Drawing template for each pair to work on based on the bubble maps we have done in class. I also made an acrostic on Google Drawing for each pair.

I shared each Drawing with one student in the pair only. I wanted to extend the skill of "Sharing". Students in my class are already skilled at sharing with me. 

I assigned partners, keeping in mind technology and problem solving skill levels. I also made sure they were not sitting by one another.

I modeled the activity on the Smartboard, with one of my students as my partner. We discussed shared work etiquette, such as do not work where you see your partner's cursor. I also suggested that the person who was being shared WITH help the student doing the sharing by standing by them as they enter the username. We discussed about deciding who would do which 'boxes' to avoid confusion, one person could do the top three, the other could do the bottom three. We also discussed that it was okay to add to your partner's work.


The Oops

I used Doctopus to share the Drawings. The problem was that the students are not the owners of the Drawings (I am) and only the owners can Share. So I quickly opened up the 13 Drawings and made the students the owner of their copies. I had to do that with both activities.


Good Practice That Came In Handy

In general, when I try a new technology skill or activity for the first time, I try to build in extra time to allow for issues or problems. Because I had given my lesson a cushion of time, I was able to deal with the sharing issue and still have most students finish the activity.  


Why Two Activities?

Repetition is important when learning any skill. I wanted the students to go through the process twice, which is why I planned two relatively short activities within the same lesson.

Students/pairs worked on the brainstorm. Then, when most pairs were done, I had them come back to the Smartboard. Once again I modeled the activity on the Smartboard, with one of my students as my partner. We also reviewed good collaboration etiquette.


Successes

Students enjoyed the task. They were able to work successfully with their partners. Some partners were able to add an image and move it to the background, with my support. We did not do any editing or revising as this was just a lesson in learning technology and collaboration skills.





Next?

Students are going to do the same lesson, with different partner. Instead of "spring" they will do March. The goal will to have ALL pairs get to the insert an image as a background stage.