Today was spent conducting 1:1 interviews with each of my tutees, Years 11 to 13. It’s a biannual conference in which students, parents and tutor collaborate on each student’s goals for the semester. Unlike other teachers, I don’t use a forest of paper during these achievement conferences; haven’t done so in years!
Simple – I’m more effective using digital technologies to help my organisation of resources and the same tech allows me to be more efficient as well.
Today it involved a two-pronged approach.
- Student goals were recorded in OneNote on my Tablet PC (I’m sticking with this for at least this year, rather than switching everything to the iPad, because my main tutor file is currently in OneNote anyway – and my typing’s quicker on my laptop too, to be fair…)
- PDF copies of goals were generated and sent to students and parents via email at the end of the day – this is where the iPad came into play.
To follow this process:
- Step 1: save each student’s OneNote page of this semester’s goals to PDF in the DropBox folder on my laptop
- Step 2: import all PDFs from today into my tutor folder within the Notability app on my iPad
- Step 3 (optional): delete the PDFs from my DropBox folder to save storage space (I’ve already got each student’s goals in both OneNote and Notability anyway…)
- Step 4: send each student a copy of their Semester 2 goals (PDF) via email directly from Notability (and cc parents at the same time)
It may sound convoluted, but it’s not really. The whole process, at the end of the day, took me about 10 minutes for 23 students.
- Each student has a copy of his / her goals for this semester
- Parents all have a copy of their child’s goals as well
- I, as their tutor and subject teacher in many cases as well, also have a copy of each student’s goals at my fingertips; laptop and iPad – I’ll always have one of those items on me, so the goals will always be within easy reach! :)
Compare this with colleagues who now have to manually photocopy two pages (the length of the template we used today) per student, distribute the goals (even, in some cases, to students they don’t teach) and have fingertip access to student goals for constant prompting and reflection – that’s going to take them longer than 10 minutes!
Enough said really! :)