Welcome to my Professional Learning blog.
My name is Matt Nicoll and I am a high school teacher in New Zealand, interested in improving the classroom experience for my students. I am open to trialing new approaches and hope to use this blog to reflect on my ideas and practices.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Collaborative Notes

One of the things I have been doing this year is putting videos and notes on a blog for my classes. I confess to putting more time and effort into my Year 9 class for this and expecting my senior classes to manage their blogs themselves (after me putting the videos up for them).

The value has been hard for me to gauge. I do not know how often my students actually use these collaborative notes and videos for regular revision etc. unless I see them using them in class. I have been very encouraged by the use in class by my seniors, but my Year 9 class have not really been given a chance to access the blog in class until recently.

Last night, I had Parent-Teacher interviews/meetings for my Year 9 class. Now I know these blogs have value, and more value than I realised. I was already happy with the improvement some students have made this year, but had not evidence for the why and how. According to most parents last night, most of my students look at the blogs, particularly the videos, every night as part of their homework routines. These students just happen to also be my "top performers" and my "biggest improvements".

Now I feel confident in saying that videoing my teaching and having collaborative notes available online have had a positive impact on the learning of my students. A nice win from a busy year-to-date...