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Using Chromebooks to record student Voice

Started by Charlotte Hills 20 Dec 2015 11:39pm () Replies (26)

Looking to connect with others who are successfully using Chromebooks as a way to develop strong student voice.  

Is anyone using individual student blogs as a way to record student voice?

What are some useful apps that can be utilized on Chromebooks to engage learners?   

Or... have you found some flaws using Chromebooks that hinder capturing student voice when using a Chromebook?


  • Katarina Moore (View all users posts) 01 Feb 2016 8:55pm ()

    Hi Nicki

    My students share their learning and work on their blogs. It gives the children an authentic audience. During reading, I often incorporate blogging. The students read others blogs and comments. Before we do this I spend time with the class to look at what a quality comment is. This year I'm hoping to encourage more parents to check their kid's blog and post comments. Quadblogging is also a great way to get going with blogging.


  • Charlotte Hills (View all users posts) 26 Jan 2016 1:55pm ()

    Hi Becks

    Thanks for joining the convo... well definitely check out the links you provided, many thanks :-)


  • Becksnewton (View all users posts) 26 Jan 2016 12:27pm ()

    HI Charlotte, 

    A great question and some great discussions going on!

    Another way to capture student voice with any device operating in  a GAFE domain is Google Forms. (Here is a link to a great 'start up guide" from Alice Keeler if you are new to forms.

    You can create surveys on any topic, for a huge range of reasons.  You can plan events, get students to book workshops, set a quiz or a follow up activity, or collect other information in an easy way. The great thing about forms is that it collates all responses easily for you. You can get students to provide yourself feedback on how a particular lesson was for them or as a "get to know you" exercise. There are also many ways you could incorporate forms into your teaching but I didn't want to stray too far from the original question about student voice. (If you did want some more ideas, here is a great video from the wonderful Leigh Hynes about using google forms to flip learning!) 

    Good luck with your journey this year!  Sounds like exciting times ahead for you and your students :-) 


  • Charlotte Hills (View all users posts) 22 Jan 2016 2:36pm ()

    Definitely more engaged when they both have something to do towards the completion of the task :-)

  • Charlotte Hills (View all users posts) 21 Jan 2016 5:43pm ()

    It will be interesting to see if I find that kids stop communicating with 1:1... will let you know what happens.... but I do think we as teachers have to make time to ensure the kids stop to feedback...  :-)

  • Johnny Zondagh (View all users posts) 20 Jan 2016 12:19pm ()

    Hi Charlotte,

    Last year my students were communicating only through the comments they could leave on both their blogs and slides used in collaboration. I would like then to continue this trend and will look into Blogger and see if that will work better. I don't have the opportunity to use Hapara yet, but do think it may work well. This will be the case particularly to keep better tabs on what students are doing online. However, in saying that, we all know that we are trying to create independant learners and in the college/high school environment in particular.

    Would you say that your students are more engaged when they work collaboratively?

  • nicki fielder (View all users posts) 18 Jan 2016 10:59am ()

    Thanks for your post Katarina... I have found it really useful as I look forward to how I will use both this year. You mentioned being able to view work on blogs. How do you use blogs within your programme with students ... Just looking at the purposes and where blogs and google docs fit.


  • Katarina Moore (View all users posts) 17 Jan 2016 8:54pm ()


    I used Hapara last year including workspace. Using Hapara makes it easy to have an overview of the students work including gmail and blogs. You don't have this feature with Google classroom. With Hapara Workspace you can easily share tasks/activities with the class or groups of students. In the end of last year I went to a Google classroom workshop. There were some features I liked that I haven't found in Workspace e.g marking of submitted work. I'm planning to use both for different purposes this year. I wouldn't like to be without Hapara though. 

    I had 1:2 last year and it worked well with children collaborating and discussing with each other. However at times, especially during writing I'd prefer it my class had 1:1. I've tried to used it so one student is writing and the other proofread at the same time (they of course continuously discuss what to write) but I find the student who is a proofreader often gets bored and off task. During writing I've had more success with collaboration if they have a shared doc (with their own section) so they can see what their buddies are writing and get ideas from each other.


  • Charlotte Hills (View all users posts) 15 Jan 2016 5:44pm ()

    Hi Johnny

    We are setting up and going with invididual blogs this year from Y4-8.  Currently only some classes have been using blogs.  This year all classes will have a blog as well to record and share student learning with parents and the wider community.

    It sounds like Hapara is very similar to Google Classroom.   

    In regard to collaboration I see many opportunities to develop this with my students, but it comes down to how I set it up.  I have heard a few teachers comment on how a kid can zone out into their own work when working with a 1:1 device.  This is true if the activity is not set up initially as a collaborative one.  Last year I found  that students were more than capable of deciding on what part of the task they would complete as part of a pair or small team (Y5/6 class).  Although, getting them to get it done was another thing!  Having to share a device between two students was a draw back, as inevitability the stronger of the pair would take over.

    This is how I see it rolling out this year with 1:1 devices.  Over half the learning activities I set up need to have a collaborative component to it.  I might have four students (could be bigger or smaller groups) working around the same topic, who each decide on which part they will complete as part of the team.  All parts need to be understood by members in the team as they move forward to ensure they are locating and synthesizing the right material.  So time needs to be set aside where sharing and discussion of learning takes place.  At the end, individually and sometimes as a group, a presentation of their findings would be required to see what connections and new learning took place.  All the collaborative work takes place in one document, which means of course that all students work from this, adding their thoughts, comments and learning.  

    If I want my students to develop and continue to communicate verbally with their peers, I must make time for it and insist on it.  We all know what it is like when we are reading a good book.... hard to put it down. So we must ask the students to stop, assess, reassess and move on.  

    Johnny & Jace how to you encourage your students to communicate with each other?






  • Johnny Zondagh (View all users posts) 15 Jan 2016 11:08am ()

    Hi Charlotte,

    The hope is that by using blogs the students will be more engaged and conscientious in their writing. They could express their own opinion and in their own words about the topic. At the same time they could write about topics they are interested in to fully engage them. I started my own blog too and asked students to comment on my articles. We did this during the last term and need to take it further, grow their confidence and have more fun and involve parents too.

    We are a Google school and just makes sense to me to continue along this path. I find Google Classroom rather useful as I can comment on what they are doing while they are doing it, so long they have shared their Google doc or slides with me. I have also used Google slides where I created the slides, one for each student. They had to choose one slide to work collaboratively and comment on each other's slide in the comments box.

    How has collaboration worked for both you and your students? Did you find them to be more engaged and participating?




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