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Ideas for using GAFE in literacy

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Started by Kevin Silcock 06 May 2014 3:40pm () Replies (21)

Hi everyone

We are just new to GAFE and I am wanting some ideas on how we can use GAFE in our literacy programme with our Year 5 & 6 students. Any ideas would be welcome.


  • Tash Jacobs (View all users posts) 07 May 2014 5:19pm ()

    Hi Kevin

    A fantastic way to use google docs is to create about 5 docs with 5/6 students contributing to one doc.  Each child writes individually but has access to read what everyone else is writing adding ideas and inspiration constantly.  From there they can give each other feedback which everyone can also see.  This develops incredibly rich writing and loads of valuable reflection and sharing between the kids.

    This is a link to another discussion talking about this as well as using google sheets (much like PowerPoint) 


    Can you see this working in your class?  What ideas do you already have?


  • Kevin Silcock (View all users posts) 07 May 2014 9:05pm ()

    Hi Tash

    Thanks for your reply. Yes i can see this working with our students. I had thought of doing something similar with a google doc. I thought that I could scaffold a particular piece of writing and get children to do their own work next to it.  I had also thought about getting students to brainstorm ideas for writing topic using a shared google doc.

    I really like to idea of the feedback from other children and this is something that i will try with the children.



  • Tash Jacobs (View all users posts) 07 May 2014 9:37pm ()

    Hi Kevin

    Fantastic idea to add scaffolded writing to the doc, I have my exemplars on the wall (which we pull apart and discuss what makes it that level etc) but I hadn't thought to add it to the docs so it's right there for them to reflect on as they write.  Also love the idea to collaboratively plan a piece of writing on a doc and then individually use for personal writing.  Perfect timing for what we are doing at the moment... Time to change my plan for tomorrow.  Thanks for sharing!

  • Anaru White (View all users posts) 08 May 2014 12:19pm ()

    Kia ora 

    I have used this example Recipe for Writing by Jill Hammonds, instead of using Etherpad you use docs. Jill used it with a Year 7/8 class however it can be used/modified for you learners. I like the scaffold it provides to engage students and model writing. As the writing is visible to each other this may not be for all students at first. Thanks Jill!

    Enjoy, and look forward to hearing how you progress.


  • Kate Crawford (View all users posts) 08 May 2014 9:21pm ()

    Kia Ora 

    Thanks for sharing what you will be doing with your class Kevin.  I teach year 7/8 students and was about to get them to start their brainstorming in their books, however after reading your comments I have decided to jsut get the students to start on google docs.  I am still getting my head around the google docs and will let you all know how it goes

    Kia Ora ano Wink

  • Tash Jacobs (View all users posts) 08 May 2014 9:40pm ()

    Hi Kevin

    The planning/practising of ideas worked really well.  They were stoked at how quickly the collaborated ideas grew.  After we had practised what we were learning on the doc they went into comments and had to comment on any sentences that didn't use the structure we were practising and show how they thought it should be structured...but sign their name.  This was non-threatening because they couldn't identify who had written what I the doc but as they signed their name to their comment I could see who had the idea of the structure we were using.

    Thanks for the great idea. :)

    Also just as an aside I asked them if anyone would prefer just writing in their books and 3 put their hands up so they did and then worked together to give each other feedback orally...so it was a win all round.  Everyone was happy and they all felt success!

  • Mel Sutton (View all users posts) 09 May 2014 12:13pm ()

    Today we watching a youTube clip of base jumping.  We listed different parts of the jump (before, take of, during, prelanding, landing, afterwards), then pairs of students each had to craft a single line of poetry for their given part of the jump. It was done in a single Google doc.  The children enjoyed seeing a whole piece of writing happening so fast.

  • Tash Jacobs (View all users posts) 10 May 2014 8:11am ()

    Awesome idea Mel.  I love the sharing on the vln.  It so grows your own ideas.  I've been working on a similar writing task, we planned our ideas together on a doc but I hadn't thought about choosing a different section each and flowing it together on a doc.  My class think the vln is cool too As I've told them that's where I get some ideas from and that other classes around the country try our cool ideas too and that makes them feel pretty special.  I've told them it's like facebook for teachers

  • Kevin Silcock (View all users posts) 11 May 2014 8:54pm ()

    Hi Anaru

    I like the way your example enables collaboration between students, but also guides them with good scaffolding. I will certainly give it a try.

    Thanks for sharing your idea.


  • Kevin Silcock (View all users posts) 11 May 2014 8:57pm ()

    Hi Kate

    I'm also just starting out with google docs, but have found the VLN great for support and ideas.

    Good luck.


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