Last year I taught students how to give each other strong feedback using Today's Meet. The full post can be found here. This year I had the opportunity to do the same lesson but with a new school and a new set of fifth graders. The lesson series with this class came out of a conversation with the teacher, Ms. Foreman about student projects. She was looking for ideas for book reviews. Lucky for me she is enthusiastic and open to any suggestion involving technology.
I introduced Ms. Foreman to Audioboom. Having just provided the teachers with a professional development session on using QR codes in the classroom we decided to create audio recordings of student book reviews. The beauty of using Audioboom is that it automatically generates a QR code linking to that specific audio file. While the recordings were taking place the class was also working in PicCollage. I showed them the basics of how to use the program and some were already familiar with the process. The goal was a book cover to accompany their audio recording. Here are a few of their samples:
The students did a great job for their first time! I revisited the class and we talked about design elements. I pointed out some that I thought were great examples and I explained exactly what I liked about the elements (color scheme, layout of text and images, background graphics, etc.).
For the next part of the lesson I created a TodaysMeet room. Students were shown each book design and had a chance to offer feedback. Transcripts of the TodaysMeet session are available if you sign up for a free account. Students really enjoyed the tool!
This class has 30 students so you can imagine the amount of feedback each student received for their book designs. As I started to look through the transcripts I saw that not all of the feedback was helpful feedback. Even positive feedback can be positive but not helpful. I printed off the transcripts and selected different samples of feedback and cut them into strips.
The next time I joined this class I showed them a short presentation on providing strong feedback:
After, students received cut-out strips of feedback that they actually generated from the TodaysMeet's room (you can print transcripts of the room discussion) and were able to sort them according to the type of feedback they were (strong feedback, neutral feedback or nonsense feedback). Using the students' own words allowed ownership for the activity. We discussed their answers and talked about using TodaysMeet again. The students did a great job with this 4-part activity!