For those new to a 1:1 learning environment, it quickly becomes obvious that there is a need for a space to organize and manage the digital pieces for the classroom. However, there are three pieces that make it a more valuable classroom part.
Tip One: Make it Easy
Technology should make things more efficient but at times we over complicate things. When I taught in a 1:1 environment, HTML was the best mechanism for capturing “Today’s Happenings”. Luckily, technology has evolved greatly since those days but still many teachers are using technology that is far from efficient (Moodle, Blackboard, etc) in terms of this organizer/manager.
In many ways, a Google Doc is one of the easiest entry points for creating such a documentation of the day-to-day activities in a class.
Tip Two: Make it Present Tense
One of the best shifts I made while teaching in a 1:1 environments, I moving the “Today’s Happenings” from the past tense (August 20) to the present tense (August 21). It created an environment that had an entirely different cognitive workflow. It seems like a small shift but consider the difference as students moved in and out of various experiences individually as well as collectively.
Tip Three: Make it Reflective
If the first two tips are followed, this type of organizing/managing piece can also be used as a reflective experience.
One way to make this shift is by sharing the Google Doc with students as “Can Comment” instead of “View Only”. Students could leave comments, questions, or ideas via comments. Then, you could change a few students a week to “Edit”. This would then allow you to call upon students to serve certain roles throughout the week: summarizer, reporter, synthesizer, curator, etc.