It’s important for teachers to take into consideration students and families access to technology before using tools. Luckily I am a 1:1 laptop classroom, so all students have access to technology at school. I only have one family not connected on Seesaw and any important information shared on Seesaw, families also see through student agendas as well as classroom/school notes home. Families are given the opportunity at conferences to review their child’s Seesaw portfolio if they did not have a chance or aren’t able to access it prior to. Families are also encouraged to use the public library if they wish to check on student’s Seesaw account if their family does not have access at home.
2 –Digital Commerce
In general this mainly applies to teachers and families, as teacher’s have the option to purchase upgraded accounts through Seesaw, Flipgrid and Formative and families have the option to purchase books through sites linked through Biblionasium. Students do not interact with any digital commerce through using these tools. If purchases are made through these tools, teachers and parents can rest assured that it is done safely and securely.
3 – Digital Communication/5 – Digital Etiquette
Students used all of these apps to communicate digitally. On Seesaw students communicated with myself, their peers, and their families sharing their learning. So far our use on Flipgrid has provided students opportunities to communicate through video with their peers and myself. When using Formative students have communicated their understanding with me their teacher. Biblionasium provided students a chance to communicate with their peers and I about awesome books. In each of these apps students practiced using digital etiquette, communicating in positive and appropriate ways. In Seesaw students had opportunities to practice providing positive comments to their peers about their learning.
4 – Digital Literacy
Students have learned many digital literacy skills using these apps. Students learned how to navigate different tech tools and how to choose the tool that best fit what they wanted to share. App smashing, using multiple apps to create a product, was a skill students practiced a lot, especially using Seesaw. Students are learning how to create and share videos, voice recordings, digital drawings, typed notes, and documents created in other apps.
6 – Digital Law/ 7 – Ditigal Rights and Responsibilities/9 –Digital Security
Students practiced being safe and responsible online in these tools, such as learning not to share personal information. They were provided a safe and secure place to practice being digital citizens, as I learned by checking the tools terms of service and privacy.
8 – Digital Health – Students learn that although these are great tools, that we need to make sure we take steps to be physically healthy, such as taking breaks from our laptops, and psychological health, such as keeping our interactions on these sites positive in nature to promote our own and our classmates well-being and positive self-esteem.
So I have really enjoyed all four of the tools I choose to check out for my major project. So now it’s time to rate and review them for you.
I asked students which of these four was their favourite and here are the results:
10/29 said Seesaw
9/29 said Flipgrid
6/29 said Formative
4/29 said Biblionasium
This makes all four apps a winner if my books because there are students who love each of them.
I also had students rate each app out of 4. It was sad and shocking that students rated Biblionasium so low overall, yet 4 students loved it the most out of our 4 choices. I think if we had started using Biblionasium at the beginning of the year this rating would be higher. Throughout the year students were keeping track of books on paper and recommending books to classmates through word of mouth, a recommendation bulletin board and Seesaw posts. Next year I will definitely start the year using it and integrate it even more to help promote a community of readers in my classroom. Before asking students I predicted that students would rate Seesaw the highest then Flipgrid, so the results were very intriguing.
Both the students and I found all of these apps pretty easy to use, with Seesaw being the easiest and most user friendly.
I would recommend each app to other teachers and will definitely continue to use each of the apps with my students. Seesaw has so many options for students and all of the new options I have as an Ambassador make Seesaw even better. Flipgrid is very motivating to my students, so it’s a great choice for teacher’s especially if they aren’t using Seesaw so that students can share their learning through video. Formative is such a great assessment tool, which makes it great for students and teachers. I love Goodreads as an adult, so finding a student friendly app like it is awesome making it a great choice to grow reading communities before students are able to use Goodreads.
If classrooms don’t have 1 to 1 devices then I would suggest Seesaw and Flipgrid as these easily be used when sharing devices among students or even among classes.
I am loving all the ways that Seesaw, Flipgrid, Biblionasium, and Formative (GoFormative) can be used in the classroom.
App smashing, especially with PicCollage to create visual representations of our learning such as our snapshots of our Easter break and our booksnaps about the books we read.
2. I love giving students a prompt or question and allowing them the choice in how they want to show their understanding.
3. I love allowing peers and families to like and comment on student work, providing positive feedback to students.
I can provide instant and timely feedback to students either providing answers and having Formative mark for me or by typing in feedback and marks. In this case, I had typed in 12 as the answer. I was able to do a quick check to see who got it right and change the mark for the student who provided more than 12 as the answer. This way I could correct the mark quickly so that student knew that they too got the correct answer to the math question.
2. Doing quick check-ins with my students that I can see all in one place.
3. Reviewing work with the whole class on the project, while still keeping students work anonymous.
We haven’t used this tool as much, as Seesaw already has a video option. We are going to start using this option more when we start connecting with others outside of our classroom.
I love that you have the option to password protect your grid
2. You can provide both video and written instructions for students.
3. Students love to take selfies for the video covers and decorate their selfie with doodles and stickers
***We haven’t done this yet, but I can’t wait to have students create video responses to each others videos. We have done would you rather questions for math, so this week we will add another dimension and have students video respond explaining why they agree or disagree with the original video response by providing evidence to back up their own opinion.
Quick book reviews and recommends to share with classmates. Optional sentence stems are even given so students can just fill in the blanks if they want. They can recommend a book to specific classmate, a few classmates, or to the whole class.
2. Students can earn badges and so many students love to earn digital badges, especially my video gamers. They keep adding to their shelves to see what other badges they will earn.
3. Students can track their 40 book challenge progress
Now for some wonderful ideas from my PLN on twitter:
Using Seesaw to share students’ learning with others in their school using QR codes
3. Connecting with experts, where students get to ask questions and learn from experts in a variety of fields such as the music one below. I look forward to trying one of these connections with my class.
Celebrate #MIOSM with @TDucassoux in the Explorer Series: Music! Theresa and her fellow professional musicians share their stories, set the stage for your students to perform for their peers around the world, and more!
I honesty don’t always read all of the terms of service before using a new tech tool, but this class has taught me that it is especially important to know what you are getting into. In light of scandals, like Facebook data mining, it’s come to light that free almost always has strings attached making free not as fantastic as one once thought.
1. Any content put on Seesaw isn’t owned by Seesaw, but actually the students, teachers and schools.
2. Student content is only shared with whom the teacher allows it to be shared. Teachers can choose:
-to keep student content just between each individual student and the teacher
-allow families to join and see content their child is tagged in using the Family Seesaw App
-allow other students to view each other’s content using the Student Seesaw App
-share content chosen content on a Seesaw blog that can be password protected or public on the internet
3. Seesaw will never sell profiles or data, they don’t use any advertisements within the app to make money, and they only charge for optional additional features that teachers or schools choose to purchase.
4. Seesaw keeps your data secure and is frequently checking to make sure of security.
For privacy, Flipgrid has the same basic claims that Seesaw had:
Flipgrid also provides additional explanation on teacher and student information use:
All of these seem pretty standard and don’t actually take much personal information. Email, first and last names are needed for almost all tech tools now a days. If teacher’s don’t want to share their location, then just make sure that your location option on your device is turned off.
It’s nice to see that very little information about students is actually collected. Along with any tech tool, just make sure that students understand not to share personal information in the content that they upload.
Just like with Seesaw users decide how content will be shared. The teacher is in control of the Grid’s privacy settings, which means that content will only be shared with those outside of the Grid if the teacher allows it and the content can be moderated by the teacher.
Some additional terms of service to note about Flipgrid:
Like with any tech tool your content or even whole account can be removed or terminated and you are responsible for what you share.
It’s also important to note that for payment purposes that your credit card will be shared with a third party payment service, but just for the purpose of fulfilling the payment for the upgraded account that was purchased.
Their privacy pledge is similar to Seesaw and Flipgrid, but I love that they block features that would allow children under 13 from sharing personal information.
Let’s see what Formative collects about us:
Your name and email address is often required to use tech tools and the photo of you is optional. If you share information, such as students’ names, it’s makes sense that they would have that information. It’s nice that they don’t use geolocation, so as long as you turn off your location you don’t need to provide that information if you don’t want to.
Now how does Formative use this data? Well…
It’s nice to know that they use the information only to enhance our use and to improve their tool. I like that if they send you third party information they will only give our information to the third party if we opt-in.
Even though user need to opt-in to provide third parties with data, they do provide some of users data to enhance features and for research. It’s nice that you can opt-out of the research, but it’s too bad that it’s automatically in unless you take the steps to opt-out.
It’s nice to know that we have some options with our data and that student data is given a bit of extra precautions.
More about the terms:
Users are responsible for what they upload to the site and need to abide by these reasonable terms of what they choose share.
So who is Erin Wiley online? Well if you google Erin Wiley, both in the “all” search and the “image” google search, you will not find me specifically on the first page. You will find a doctor, actress, and a lawyer, but not teacher Erin Wiley. You will find my husband’s second cousin, also Erin Wiley, but not me. So unless you add other factors into your search you will have to spend more time searching to figure me out.
results of my google search
I have an online presence on social media like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. My Twitter and Pinterest are public, but I keep my Facebook and Instagram set to private. If someone got access to those it wouldn’t be a big deal, I’m not worried about content. However, I don’t feel like I need to share my private life so openly with anyway who happens upon my account. This also keeps my students from adding me on Facebook and Instagram. I like to keep school and home separate, otherwise I feel like I am always “Mrs. Wiley” rather than Erin Wiley. With social media I know teachers who have families from their school on social media, but I just don’t feel comfortable with that. Just like if I am going to the beach or a swimming pool, I don’t feel that comfortable being in a bathing suit around students even though what I am wearing isn’t scandalous.
When I am on my own time I prefer to not wear my “teacher hat” and just be me, so when it comes to social media I prefer to keep my more personal accounts private and only my professional accounts public. I use Facebook mainly to keep in touch with family and friends. I am part of some PLN teacher groups on Facebook, but still only my Facebook friends will see my personal information. My Twitter account is more so professional. I use my Instagram account primarily professionally and although it used to be public it is now set to private. I had some issues with spam and inappropriate accounts trying to comment or send me messages, so I changed it to a private account to try and reduce/eliminate this. For Pinterest I have a mix of professional and private, pinning things like teaching ideas and recipes for home.
When I first joined social media I wasn’t as choosy with what I posted or liked. Now as an educator I am definitely more selective online. Teachers often feel under a microscope. Having the profession we are expected to be role models both in and outside of school, including online. Even at staff meetings we get told from STF teacher representatives to be careful about our online activities. Sometimes online people will tag you to content or add you to groups. What I find difficult is when people add me to groups or tag me to content that I may not approve of or could be interpreted negatively. Although I can remove myself, I still need to be aware that I’ve been added or tagged.
I think that it is important to be aware of our actions online and try to leave a positive digital footprint. Our online presence can sometimes be the first impression people have of us and we would want people to get a positive first impression. If people find the actual me online I want them to see me in a positive light and be seen as the best version of myself. With this in mind I think it’s important to help students to build a positive digital footprint too.
Digital Identity and My Major Project:
On another note, part of my online identity now includes being a Seesaw Ambassador. After learning that Seesaw still had open applications to be ambassadors I decided to apply. Using Seesaw with my students and as part of my project I decided that I wanted to take my own Seesaw journey to the next level. After applying I was provisionally accepted because of how I have been using Seesaw. Then once I completed the three hour training I became certified. A perk of being an ambassador is getting to use the premium feature of Seesaw, which includes being able to tag posts with outcomes and assess posts. If you’ve been using Seesaw and want to be an ambassador check out the application link above for what is expected of you and some perks you get.
Here’s an update of my journey into educational apps and websites…
What I love most about Biblionasium is that it is like a kid’s version of Goodreads, allowing students to add books to their virtual bookshelves, rate books, share reviews and recommendations, as well as work towards reading goals. There are lots of how to videos on Biblionasium’s YouTube channel for both educators and students to help them understand how to use all of the tools on the site. Here’s a quick video to show students what they can do.
So far my students have signed in and started logging the books they have read so far. I love that I can create reading challenges for my students, which work perfectly with the 40 book challenge we started at the beginning of the year. The 40 book challenge comes from “The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child” by Donalyn Miller. I love Donalyn’s perspective on how to encourage lifelong readers and providing students with choice while still encouraging them to try new things. If you haven’t read her books I highly encourage you to add them to your to be read list. The purpose of the 40 book challenge isn’t as much about reading 40 books as it is about reading more books and broadening the genres of books that students have tried. It is the hope that through the challenge students find even more types of books that they enjoy and share their love of books with others. My students have been logging their progress of the books they read and the challenge on paper, so they have transferred this into Biblionasium. Some students are still finishing logging the books into the challenge, but so far it’s working great. Both students and teacher’s can check out each others’ bookshelves and how their challenge is going. Below is an example of one way to view student’s progress towards challenges. This shows that the student has only two more books to complete this part of the challenge.
I am lucky that my school division decided to get an account for Biblionasium. What’s great about this is that Biblionasium is now linked to my school’s library. This means that when students look up books it will tell them if the school library has the book and if it is available (“IN”) or already checked out (“OUT”). I love this feature.
Since my school division has an account I didn’t have to set up an account for myself or my students. I did have one glitch along the way, but I don’t think this is a typical issue. When my students were entered into the classroom rosters, one of my students wouldn’t show up in my class roster, but would show up in the school’s roster. For some reason it wasn’t just an easy fix of clicking a couple buttons and adding him to my roster. So my school’s IT had to work with Biblionasium to figure out how to fix it. Thanks to these wonderful people this glitch has been fixed and now my student is part of our class group. Now that all my students are set up correctly the plan is for students to start sharing reviews and recommendations with each other about the books that they read. I hope that through sharing about books with their classmates it helps foster a love of reading and connecting with others through books.
I am very fortunate that my school division has provided me with a paid Flipgrid account. The school division bought Flipgrid accounts for interested teachers who are part of the connected educator program and any other teacher’s interested could apply for a paid account. This week my plan is to set up my students accounts and have my students create their first Flipgrid response. Although I haven’t started my students on it yet, I have started to collect ideas of how to use it through teachers sharing their ideas on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. Here’s one from Twitter that I look forward to checking out:
I have been using Seesaw for about two years, but I don’t currently use all of the features. My students know how to create a variety of posts, so now I would like my students to start using the commenting feature. So this week we will be learning about what makes a quality comment and will be practicing using sticky notes to comment on paper assignments first. Once we understand how to comment appropriately, using digital etiquette, on paper form we will move towards the digital form.
I think it is important as a teacher that I model for my students a life long drive to learn. I have been attending digital PD about Seesaw since I became a user and continue to look for new ways to use it. If you are a new user or interested in using it check out their “PD in Your PJs” list of past professional development that includes videos and slides. If you click “Find a Session” you can register for live PD session coming up. I love that they have some longer PD as well as short 10 minute “Sprint” sessions.
I am loving Formative so far. My students now all have accounts and have completed a couple exit slips. They have completed an exit slip reflecting on their reading so far this year. As this was an open ended short answer type of exit slip there was no right or wrong answer. In addition, they have answered math questions about mixed numbers and improper fractions or patterns. For the math exit slip there was only one possible correct answer for each question, but I look forward to trying the variety of response options that Formative has. I am loving that once students submit I have the option to give them instant feedback showing them which questions they answered correctly and what the correct answer should be.
Here’s the student view example of one of the math exit slips
Here’s the teacher view of the exit slip. There is a drop down menu to choose the type of response option and a place to write a correct answer if applicable.
How Does My Project Fit Into Digital Citizenship?
As far as Mike Ribble’s Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship, my major project fits within the elements of digital communication, digital etiquette as well as digital security. Through these different apps and websites my students will be learning how to communicate in a variety of ways and use digital etiquette when viewing and responding to others posts. I will personally be diving more into digital security to better understand how these apps help keep students and their information safe when online.