Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Making my GAME plan work!

Making my GAME plan work!

According to Dr. John Ross, technology provides a way to reach more students with a variety of needs, talents and backgrounds (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009). As a teacher, my primary purpose is to better meet the needs of my students. In my previous post, I listed two technology goals I wanted to work on to help me reach more students.

My first goal was to better utilize Google Forms to promote student reflection. To learn how to better use Google Forms, I need to do many things. The first thing I need to do is experiment with forms. At this point in time, I have made a survey for my technology club students, but have yet to implement this into my classroom. I also want to use my Atomic learning account to watch a tutorial on how to use Google Forms. Since I am in the middle of report cards, I have yet been able to do this. Once I have figured out how to successfully use these forms, I need to research practical and academic usages. I intend to use Google Forms to help me analyze student feedback to better meet the needs of all of my students.

My second goal was to use a wiki to promote collaboration with students, coworkers and parents.  Communication is important to me as an educator. Currently in my school district, we are focused on promoting positive student talk where students have time to process and learn from each other. I believe that a wiki could be a great way to promote student talk using technology. I also think a wiki is an excellent way to facilitate collaboration among colleagues. Currently, I am planning outdoor school with four staff members. I am constantly sending emails to communicate all of the details that go into science camp. I wish at the beginning of this process we had used a wiki. This would be a great way to have facilitated important discussions without having to take too much time.  In my school building, we are going through many changes. The biggest change is that my building may be closed by the school district. This has left a lot of miscommunication and rumors. To promote positive communication in my building, I just began a school wikispaces account . After explore wikispaces, I was able to get a wiki started. I still need to watch help videos and find ideas on how to successful implement a wiki with my students. However, I think this is a good start to my goal of using wikis to promote collaboration.

I am excited about these goals and looking forward to learning more and making these technology tools common in my instructional and professional practices.


Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009). Meeting students’ needs with technology, part 1. Integrating technology across the content areas. Baltimore, MD: Author.


  1. I think a wiki is an excellent way to promote discussion. Talking in class can be intimidating but the use of a blog helps ease that tension. Some students would rather write their response because they have that opportunity to view their response before they post. The wiki also encourages educational dialogue because their comments are not private. This makes students take their responses more serious.

    Sorry to hear about the possibility of your school closing, I am sure that makes for a stressful environment.

    Good luck with your goals,
    Sean Bosley

  2. Jill,
    It sounds like you have a good plan for learning about Google Forms. Watching a tutorial and learning about them is great. Once you learn about them, you want to give yourself enough time to research and plan how you want to implement them. Time is everything and I understand what you mean by saying you’re in the middle to report cards because we just got done doing our progress reports. I do believe that a Wiki could be a great way to promote student discussion. A Wiki would be great for communicating with more than one person. Instead of sending individual emails to your colleagues, everyone can communicate opening and at one time. I am sorry to hear such unfortunate news. Here we are trying to promote technology and better our children’s education but unfortunately it is still a business. There is isn’t enough money in the budget to keep a school open; there certainly isn’t enough money for technology. Regardless of the rumors, you have a good plan and good ideas.

  3. Thanks Sean and Jason! It is a chaotic environment in my district right now. In the end, I know it will be fine, but we are in the thick of it. Admittedly, it does have my husband and I talking more about moving to a sunnier place that does not have all of the drama. :-)

    I did find creating a wiki was harder to manage than I anticipated. I invited all of the staff at my school and many chose not to join and several could not get on. Sometimes I feel like all of my attempts at technology are for not. I still try though, even with technical difficulties. I figure that if I am not willing to keep trying, I cannot expect my students to either. Thus, I persevere and celebrate the successes I do have.


    1. Jill,
      This is a great goal and I can tell that you are definitely well on your way to making it happen! I found wikispaces a bit hard to keep up, but I'm sure with the videos and collaboration you will be doing it will be a breeze. I can't imagine what I would do if I was told my school may be closing and I'm sure the rumors are crazy! It's amazing what parents find out!! I think creating this space where parents, teachers, and students are able to communicate will definitely help set the record straight and comfort parents! I recently started a Friday Folder in my class to help increase parent communication and it has helped tremendously with homework and even test grades. I'm sure your wikispace will do the same!

    2. Thanks Jillian! I definitely have a lot to learn!


  4. It sounds like you have a grasp at what you need to do to work towards achieving your goals. It is great that you have already begun your own explorations to expand your knowledge about these new technologies. Google documents are an area I too would like to expand on. As a member of a grade level team I think it would be a grerat way to share plans and ideas for classroom instrinstructs. Using a wiki is another way we could collaborate our ideas. I like your idea of creating a staff wiki to share what is going on. This would eliminate a lot of repetitive e-mails. That is something I will think about working on for next year. It sounds like you are well on your way with your GAME plan. I wish you best of luck and look forward to hearing how your staff wiki goes.

    Judy Spears

  5. Jill-

    I am impressed that you have already done so much to implement your GAME Plan. I think you are on the right track with your self directed learning of Google Forms. I admire that you are taking the time to really understand this tool before you implement it in your class. I often find that I get excited about things and often do not take the time to carefully implement them, this leads to frustration.

    I think your immediate creation of a Wiki to promote collaboration for both your students and colleagues as you deal with the closing of for school was a fantastic idea. I think that is great that you are taking an active role in using technology to be a leader for change. I think your comment about using technology to help students practice positive talk and learn from each other is great. I have found that often when I can not seem to get through to a student all they need is a new perspective or description. Your plans sound great and it seems that yoga re well on your way.
    Good luck!
    Koreen Humphries

  6. Jill,

    What an amazing plan you have started and are ready to implement. I too would like to you Google forms as an outlet to interact with my students through modern technology. I think the use of a introductory survey will truly allow you to get a grasp of the current skills your students have and how you can use them to their advantage in your lesson building strategies. Besides forms, do you use other Google options such as docs. In hoping of implementing my GAME plan, I have recently signed up for a one day conference on this application. I am excited to learn about all of the ways I can use it in my classroom. I would love to eventually take my whole class up onto the web. This will obviously take time to build but it is a long-term goal I am interested in. You seem to be heading that way as well. I also like how you are using these media outlets not just for immediate class work, but the creation of dialogue between teacher, students, and the community. This is an important practice which will only help you in your classroom.

    Thank for sharing and good luck,

  7. Crystal to Jill

    Your two goals are also ones that I am very interested in as well. However, for this assignment, I did not choose them for my GAME plan. In February, I attended a three day Tech Conference and became very interested in Google Docs. Then we had a tech day inservice at my school and there was a class on Google Docs. We were able to learn a little bit more about it and could even create something if we wanted. I decided to create a form in which I set up as a survey and then I emailed it out to my parents. Not long after I sent out the email, responses started coming in. It was awesome to see the results instantly. This is a GREAT way to assess the students because you can see how they did instantly. I have not yet played around with the other formats that Google Docs has to offer, but from what I have seen and heard, I can't wait to try it out. So I think it is a great tool to incorporate into your classroom. Wikis are something that we were able to learn a little bit about in a past course of ours. I really enjoyed working together to create one and had the idea to use it in my classroom for group projects. For example, next year I want to have the students research Ohio Indian tribes and in small groups, create a Wiki about each one. I have not tried it this year yet because I still need some practice creating one myself. Your idea of using a Wiki to promote collaboration is great. I also think blogs could play a good role for collaboration too, because the students are able to receive feedback from their peers and many others. It sounds like you have a great GAME plan for incorporating more technology into your classroom. I wish you the best and I hope that your school is able to stay open next year!

    Good Luck!
    Crystal Moyer