As an educator, there is nothing I love more than awesome professional development. My school recently held “Mini-Conferences”, given by our teachers, for our teachers. We were able to go to two mini-conferences. I attended Standards Based Grading and SeeSaw. Both conferences were great, and actually reminded me of Twitter Math Camp, professional development by teachers, for teachers.
I had not heard of SeeSaw before, but it sounded amazing. SeeSaw is a digital portfolio that students can access from their phones, iPads, or a computer. Students can take pictures or videos on their phone (iPad or computer) and then instantly upload it to the app. They can also add links, files, notes, or annotate anything on the app. Once something is uploaded, the whole class can see it in a “Facebook” like live feed. Students can like and comment on uploads. Students don’t even need to sign in, which is great for younger students. Once they download the app, they can just scan the provided QR code and they are instantly in.
I was doing a Station review of Functions the day after the professional development and decided that I had t incorporate SeeSaw. After a great suggestion by Julia Finnyfrock, I decided to have each student video themselves explaining just one problem on the review we were working on. I told students that I wanted them to look over all of the problems in the review (or the previous review homework) and pick one they wanted to work on. While working, they could ask me for help.
After completing their problem, they checked their answer with me. Then, they created and uploaded video explaining how to do their problem. I created a folder for each station, so that it would be easier for students to find problem they needed to see.
I loved using SeeSaw because if a student needs help during station work, they can watch a video until I have time to come over and help them. Also, they can watch the videos when they are working or reviewing at home. A great benefit is also for absent students. I uploaded the worksheet with solutions from the review and even a one-sheet that we created in class. All of the work for the review, including work we did in class, was all in one place. They can watch their peers explaining problems they missed in class.
I encouraged, but did not require all students to make a video. I wanted my students to do what they needed to do for their review. Some students did not want to create a video, and some students created more than one!
Here is a glimpse of what students see in the SeeSaw feed. When they click on the folder, they can see all of the videos that relate to that folder.