Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Managing students self management of technology

On Friday evening after a tiring week while sipping on a frosty glass, you might be sitting there trying to think of how to make your classroom management run more smoothly. This question might come up. How to keep kids accountable for their work when using technology while still allowing for creative and innovative thinking and research?  As teachers we want our students excited about learning and interested in their research topics. However we can't have them just wondering through the internet or jumping from research to a gaming website.  When that happens we are tempted to lock them down and not allow them to go anywhere else but on word.  But do we as educators and learners work that way? No! We start writing and then come up with an idea and we go back to google and look up a few things search photos and blogs and webinars to gain more information.  Let's not limit our students intrinsic motivation to learn more rather teach and guide them to how to stay focused, productive and on task. How???!

Well worry no more! Here are a few helpful tips that have worked well in my classroom

1. Have students sit at a table with their backs to you and the class, that way they are held accountable for what they are viewing just by knowing that anyone can see it.

2. Rubrics, you and the students come up with the rubric for the assignment and the students have their copy and refer to it the whole time.  This gives them a visual and academic buy in for the assignment.

3. Personal check list.  Students write down their goals for the tasks they want to complete that day, at the end of their computer time they write down what they completed, new ideas they added to their research and what they did not get to finish and make goals for the next work time.

4. Tech buddies and collaborative groups. The groups and buddies help each other stay on task.  The students know that their partner will be checking their work as well as their teacher.  The students then keep their logs in their seatwork folder and turn that in at designated checkpoints throughout the unit.

Medical Alert!

 I had a huge problem with viruses on the laptops. After playing detective for a couple of weeks, I figured out a couple of possible culprits:
 1. Flash drives travelling to different computers;
2. Students installing various toolbars;
3. Students clicking on advertisements.

Image result for computer viruses

*Flash drives are now assigned to specific computers. Flash drives can be virus carriers and can contaminate other computers. If a virus shows, it is now contained to the computer and to the flash drive.
*Students are also assigned to specific computers. Because I share the laptop cart with other teachers and I can only check out 12 laptops. A group of 3 to 4 students are assigned to a numbered computer. They are responsible for happens on that computer and periodically I check the browser history.