The Modern Connected Learner

At the end of 2011 I had left my position as e-Learning Director at Wellington College and during 2012 worked as an e-Learning consultant and trainer to a number of schools and e-Learning PD clusters around New Zealand. It was a stimulating year where , having visiting a range of schools, I have been able to observe how different schools have faces similar challenges and adopted a range of approaches to enhance their e-Learning capabilities to advance teaching and learning. This has been informative for me having only taught at the one school during my teaching career until now. Another thing this year has illuminated for me is that I do miss the classroom and the community of the school environment. I now look forward to a new challenge in 2013 and am taking up the position of Director of e-Learning at Palmerston North Boys’ High School. This is a school with a proud tradition, committed and enthusiastic staff and fantastic boys. Their motto “Nihil Boni Sine Labore” which translates to “Nothing achieved without hard work” is something which I firmly aspire to and so look forward to making a positive impact on the school over the coming years.

From what I have learnt over the last 2-3 years experience and as I look ahead to 2013 I have come to the conclusion that for a school to move ahead with their e-Learning capability they need to recognise the needs of the modern connected learner. My thoughts are summed up in the 4 points below:

  1. The internet has transformed learning
  2. There needs to be appropriate learning tools and a support infrastructure in place
  3. The role of the teacher needs to change
  4. Pedagogy is at the heart of the use of technologies

1. The internet has transformed learning

The internet has transformed the ways by which learners’ access information and our schools and their teachers must respond or they will become irrelevant. Teachers with their specialist subject expertise are no longer the only sources of knowledge. Where teaching used to be about filling up our students as empty vessels with knowledge and then testing their retention, we must now explore new ways of thinking about teaching and learning. Individual students need to be given challenges and opportunities to pursue relevant answers to questions themselves and to develop life-long learning capabilities as well as subject knowledge. Schools will become more relevant by showing adaptability to this new world of the way that we access and share information. But before this can happen…

2. There needs to be appropriate learning tools and a support infrastructure in place

Teachers and Learners need to not only be well connected but also be provisioned with well-chosen tools that enable genuine collaboration, communication, creativity and innovation – ie to open up new and different ways of learning to occur (p36 NZ Curriculum). Learning tools should be cloud-based and low or zero cost to enable easy access for all students from anywhere and at any time. The ICT infrastructure must be an enabler, rather than a disabler which can frustrate and impede progress – teaching & learning, as opposed to administration, management or other, must be the priority when choosing tools. Student devices (BYOD) are now not an option but are an essential component for students to access their online tools to enable their ability to learn from anywhere and at anytime. Their devices should work seamlessly at school and from home. With appropriate learning tools and infrastructure in place…

3. The role of the teacher needs to change

With the changing role of the teacher, we have never been more important with the best of us being  continuous learners who operate within the strong disciplinary framework of our subject areas1. We are living in a technologically fast changing world where, as teachers, we need to be models of adaptability to our students. Good schools create the professional space for genuine teacher reflection and learning and acknowledge and support teachers who are at different stages. They also give the space and permission to teachers to take acceptable risks to explore new approaches in a supportive environment. In short, a teacher needs to become a modern connected learner himself/herself and embrace the tools and see the potential of how they can open up new and different ways of learning in their curriculum area or year level. Until they do that, little will change. With this in mind it is important to remember that…

4. Pedagogy is at the heart of the use of technologies

Learning tools should be utilised purposefully with individual teachers having clearly stated and well understood learning objectives when choosing an ICT tool2 to meet a particular learning need. In other words, teachers have a clear understanding of why they are using a tool. Students are being given authentic and challenging tasks to extend their thinking skills and ability to cope in an increasingly complex and connected world of growing information, multiple ideas and perspectives and with the increasing need to communicate and collaborate effectively. Teachers’ disciplinary thinking is enabling students to critique the information and misinformation and to develop and construct their own knowledge and ideas with opportunities to present their work to authentic audiences. We have enabled the modern connected learner who is engaged in authentic tasks. Just remember, it’s the learning, stupid!


1Though directed more toward secondary teachers (subject specialist), could apply to primary teachers

2Choosing an ICT tool could equally mean choosing an activity or other tool within an LMS such as Moodle

Moodle Forums – still the tool with the most potential to improve learning

I just had a reflective read through my e-fellow research report written in 2008 and was struck by how, four years later, the Blended Learning Model is so much more relevant today.

In 2008, using Moodle’s forum tool, I encouraged a Year 11 History class to interact with the course content through a blend of online and class discussion and debate. A rigorous analysis of the value of this was completed followed by conclusions about the value of the model for improving student learning.

Also consider that the class had yet to encounter the Moodle LMS (VLE) prior to the study and that this was pre-Facebook which did not enter the New Zealand teenage scene until sometime during 2009.

The reason I believe that we, as teachers, should be using discussion forums with our students is that this is the environment that students now live and are at their most comfortable – ie regular online discussion and chat. Students are happy to discuss, comment and debate in this medium so why not bring it into learning?

I have observed a lot of Moodle courses in a number of school environments with a range of resource and activity tools being used. My belief however, is that the most under-utilised tool, and the one that has the most potential to help improve student learning is the Moodle Forum.

Here is a link to my Blended E-Learning Research Report called “How can Student Interactivity be Enhanced through the use of a Blended Learning Approach?”

Google Sites – Enabling students to aspire to a higher quality of research and presentation work

Last year my Year 9 History class was about to embark on their task of researching Old Boys from their school who fought in the First World War. The dual purpose of the topic was for these new entrants to learn about the history of their school, their country at the time and the battle fields of the War.

Having successfully challenged the class to use Google Docs to research and present the Ancient Rome topic, I decided to take it one step further and ask them if they would like to build a class website. This was a risky undertaking as it would require an already high level and difficult individual research task to be presented in a shared and co-ordinated approach. With some Web Design (Digital Technologies) teaching background I had confidence that I could assist a small team of enthusiastic students from within the class to help prepare and manage the technical aspects of the project.

wcwwi

The topic background was introduced over the last two weeks of Term Two with the full research and presentation project introduced and completed during Term Three of 2011. Here is the completed class website with each student completing and signing off at the bottom of their respective page. Their research was completed on a separate Google document template. On the website I have written here fully about how the research project was implemented along with some reflections. I also presented on it in a workshop at the U-learn teachers conference in October 2011.

Google Sites in Education are being increasingly used for School Extra-Curricular Sports and Arts – Club, Team and Group websites – a good example here used by the increasingly successful Wellington College Rowing Club. I have even seen Sites being implemented this year in interesting ways for student centred houses at Nayland College (Nelson). And of course many teachers and students have Google Sites for classes or student portfolios.

The way that I have utilised Google Sites here is to get students to take their research work to another level. To set their expectations higher and to teach them about:

  • Research Quality and Standards
  • Writing Content for the Web
  • Web Presentation – Navigation and Consistency
  • Teamwork – Collaboration and Communication

What I have come to appreciate is that the higher the level of expectation that I set for my students then the more they aspired to meet it. For example, the more prepared, well designed and professional the student web development team made the website template look when presented to the rest of the class, then the more the sense of expectation of a higher quality of work that the class aspired to.

Of course this was my first attempt and there are things that I would certainly do differently given another opportunity at this sort of task, but I definite enjoyed teaching in this student centred, inquiry focused and collaborative style and I know that my students enjoyed it and undoubtedly gained from the experience.

Going Google Apps?

Going Google Apps

Many schools looking to switch to Google Apps often ask about how they should manage the transition for their organisation, particularly offering support and training to staff and students.

The experience I had back in December 2009 when we transitioned Wellington College to Google Apps was made a lot easier by Google’s provision of a Google Apps Support Site Template. All I had to do was add the site template to our organisation and make a few modifications and provide a link. Google continually update the template as they regularly improve their Apps suite.

I have installed the site template here where you can follow instructions on how to install it into your education institution.

I find the training videos link particularly useful along with the “Learn by app” links. There are always new things to learn.

Enjoy.

Google Docs – Learning and Collaboration in Action

In my last year at Wellington College (2011) I had the pleasure of teaching a Year 9 History class and, as the school’s eLearning Director, was given plenty of freedom to explore diffent ways that eLearning tools could enhance and make learning history more relevant for the students. After only 4 weeks of regular teaching the new entrants were surprised when I told them that it was now there turn to take over.
(Note: class was mixed ability and Year 9 in New Zealand is age approx 12-13 at beginning February)

Collaboration Task Description

They were given the task, in pairs, to research and present to the class an aspect of the current topic: “Ancient Rome”. Google Docs was the chosen tool as our College had the previous year become a Google Apps for Education School and the tool enabled students to collaborate and work on their projects from home. They needed to work on a shared Doc to plan their research and presentation notes and to also work on a shared Google Presentation (PowerPoint) to present their topic to the class. Presentations were to be 10 minutes long and based around 3 focus questions which I the students were to develop for their chosen topics. You can see the full outline of the research and presentation project assessment task here.

As I only taught the class 2-3 times a week, the majority of the research needed to be completed as homework. The students did not have their own laptops or devices in class but we were able to book some time to access computers to learn how to use the Google Tools and to access the necessary online research materials. As this was the students first research task the assessment focus was mostly on the presentation rather than on the sourcing. While the research was completed over 5 weeks, we did still manage to watch the movie “Gladiator” and the fascinating Ancient Megastructures documentary on the Colosseum. The final 2 weeks were devoted to the presentations with 3 per lesson – the students booked themselves into the presentation slots via a shared Google Spreadsheet.

The Finished Product

Below are two of the presentations to give you an idea of the quality of what was produced. Presentation notes were printed by the students and each student was required to take an equal part in their presentation:

Roman Emperors – Presentation Notes

Roman Architecture – Presentation Notes

The full list of topics that were presented on is: Emperors, Architecture, Rome’s Greatest Enemy, Christianity, Gods, Expansion of the Empire, Gladiators, Army, Punishments, Technology, The Fall of Rome, Civilisation, Pompeii, Slaves, The Aqueducts – a reasonably extensive list. Most other presentations were just as outstanding in content with students wanting to maintain the quality of what they saw in the first round of presentations (Note: an exception was made for the Roman Emperors Project where the two students were given permission to not use research focus questions so they could maintain their creative theme).

This is the second time that I have done this collaborative research and presentation assessment task using Google Docs. What continues to amaze me is that the students absolutely love completing it despite the amount of work involved. When taught how to structure a presentation properly they learn a lot and also gain a great deal of confidence with many getting over their initial fear of presenting in front of others. Of course I enjoy it also as I see students engaged and enjoying learning and liking the subject that I have a passion for. It is also great to see their creativity and personalities coming to the fore in this type of task.

Student Feedback

At the end of the year I conducted an extensive anonymous class survey (using Google Forms) on a number of questions related to the entire year. Three of the questions were specific to the task described above. 25 of the 30 students were present to take part in the survey – here are their responses:

1.

rome question one

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.

rome question two

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The student feedback on the above question is a real endorsement of Google Docs as a collaborative tool. As the project could not be completed in the limited time that we had in class it made the project sharing side invaluable. All Research Student Presentation Notes and Presentations were also shared to me from the beginning so that I could track student progress on their assignments.

3.  The final question that the students were asked was:

 “What things did you learn most from doing the Rome Research and Presentation Task and seeing other students presenting theirs?”

Answers were in written form and can be viewed here.

Moodle and Google Apps after 9 Months – Our Students Respond

Well its been a long year and a good 8 months since my last post. I sound a bit like a lapsed Catholic in a confession with the irregularity of my posts – but its been such a busy year and I now have a bit of energy and something to say about how things have been going. My last post was about how we had implemented our new Moodle site, which some of our students had requested be named MyColl, and the successes that we had experienced. The site has gone from strength to strength and feedback from a number of reputable sources show that MyColl has been one of busiest school Moodle sites in the country.

We completed an online survey in November, 9 months after we had introduced the integrated Moodle & Google Apps site to the school, which ran for about 10 days to gauge our student feedback. It ran for the period just as our senior students were preparing to and left for exams. The response rate was over 20% of the student body. The survey was anonymous though students were required to sign in via their school Google Accounts – here is a link to a parallel survey.

One of the responses from the survey was that a good proportion of our students were accessing resources from home. Our school is a regular Day School with no boarders and is only just starting on a path of teachers putting work online. To have so many students accessing the Learning Management System from home in its first year is very encouraging.

The uptake of Google Docs across the College by students in just 9 months is both surprising and also hugely encouraging. Although 25% of the students have never used Docs, 75% have had some exposure with 34% being regular users (either “Often” or “All the time”). It is anticipated that usage of Google Docs will grow more sharply in 2011 with Google’s huge on-going investment to improve the product and more staff planning to use the tool within their teaching programmes.

What feature(s) do you MOST LIKE about MyColl?

About half the students who completed the survey took the opportunity to write comments on features which they liked about the site. Here is a wordcloud that gives a visual impression of what they liked the most.

Finally, the students were asked if they would like a student area to discuss, debate, vote and engage one another on school based issues. With the advent of social forums such as facebook (currently blocked within school due to its highly distractive nature) I expected that students would rather stay away from a school based social network. However, I was pleasantly surprised at the response as you can see below. We will be launching “Student Voice” for students in early 2011.

Well those are a few of the responses from our students. As you can see another busy year ahead with a few more projects to get under way. I intend to get a post out once per month this coming year, but don’t hold me to it.

Happy New Year to all.

MyColl (Our New Moodle Site) – 2 months in

Well our new Moodle Site (MyColl) has now been going just over 2 months. The idea to replace our school Microsoft File Sharepoint(less) site with Moodle grew last year as some staff started using a “Rebel” Moodle site that I provisioned. By early October I also had a handful of students requesting that we replace it. Two of the students helped me develop a site plan and they came up with the idea of naming it “MyColl” (as Wellington College students often refer to themselves as Coll Boys). I whipped up a Photoshop mock-up of what the site would look like. I was careful to include the integration of Google Apps Education Edition as an essential element. I presented the idea to the school’s Senior Management team Mid October. The idea was that the site would be the “hub” of online activity for the school on top of being a teaching & learning site.

By the end of October the site was hosted and themed for us by Totali. They also provided a tool called TSync which syncs password changes on the school’s Active Directory through to online services. We also made MyColl the browser home page on all computers, plus we enabled SSO (single-sign-on) so that students and staff were automatically signed into Google Apps when signed into Moodle.

Key Features of MyColl

  1. Students Input and Ownership – they named it and also designed the logo (over 1/3 of the school voted online for the student finalists who submitted their Logo design online)
  2. The MyTools dropdown provides access to all student Google Apps
  3. We do not allow students to change photos (their school ID is uploaded for them), First or Last Name, and Email Addresses – this forces them to access school Gmail accounts. If they want to fool around then they use FaceBook.
  4. A Gmail Block appears (once logged in) on the front page with unread mail headings displayed
  5. We turned off Moodle Calendar completely – opting instead for the more generic Google Calendar (all departments are required to place assessment dates on the school assessment calendar embedded in the site. We also have our standard Public Calendar embedded and a Sports Calendar was also added.
  6. School Events and information are updated regularly on the home page (though we are currently in the April School Holidays)
  7. There are a range of public pages for parental and public access and information. A number of pages and most courses require logins.

The site is deemed to be “under construction” as a number of pages are still to be added over the next few months (we are aiming for one new page/course  every week or two).

How successful has it been?

I am presenting the site to the New Zealand Moodle Moot (Conference) this week. My presentation is on the integration of Moodle and Google Apps with a discussion around Google Docs as a teaching & learning tool. As I was putting together the presentation I gathered some statistics on our MyColl site.

Key Statistics Are:

  • We are averaging 1200 “Unique” logins per week (out of a school of 1530 students and 120 staff) – From Moodle Stats
  • We are averaging about 1500 “Absolute Unique Visitors” Daily – Google Analytics (interpreted this means from a different browser/computer)
  • Interesting is that although there is a drop-off of “Absolute Unique Visitors” on Friday and Saturday, Sunday when school is closed sees us maintain the 1500 visitors.
  • In the last 15 DAYs of school (since we enabled Google Analytics) we have had 28,400 Visits, 8700 Absolute Unique Visitors with 116,840 Pageviews.

Considering we have been effectively going for only 9 school weeks this is very encouraging. Only about 25-30% of teachers are using it regularly with their students. As training is provided and courses are developed over coming months, we should see the usage really take off!

Why has it been successful?

I believe that the integration of Google Apps with the Moodle Site has been one of the keys. The site is steadily growing to become the communication hub of the school as well as an effective growing eLearning site.

Feel free to explore the site at http://mycoll.school.nz and ask any questions here.

Fast Changing Web Trends – Student Snapshots

Besides being a teacher of High School Mathematics and History (I only know of one other teacher in the country who also has this combination) I have also just started my second year of teaching Web Design & Development to Year 12 (16-17 year olds), a course that I developed last year.

On the first day of the course the students are asked to complete an online survey – a Google Form of course. The final question in the survey asks the students to “List 10 words which come to mind when the word Internet is mentioned”. This is an individual task where students cannot consult other students. I then display their results by copying/pasting their answers to Wordle to form a Word Cloud, in which the words that are entered multiple times display larger than others.

This exercise in itself creates good discussion among students, however this is the first year that I have been able to compare the results to the previous year. The results (below) created great discussion and highlighted to students how quickly new tools are adopted and sometimes at the expense of others.

Snapshot taken beginning February 2009 (26 students):

[click on image to enlarge]

Snapshot taken beginning February 2010 (54 students – 2 classes):

[click on image to enlarge]

Most telling Trends (for teenagers)

  1. Facebook was a small player a year ago (smaller than bebo) but now is the most dominant (with bebo dropping)
  2. Using the web to access Information is not as strong
  3. YouTube whose 5th birthday is this week has grown further
  4. Email has emerged more strongly – possibly because of the trend towards webmail and away from PC based software such as Outlook
  5. Music has dropped significantly – can anyone suggest why this might be??
  6. Porn (top right in 2009) fails to get a mention in 2010 – I don’t know what to make of that
  7. Explorer (Internet Explorer) doesn’t rate a mention this year – probably because we rolled out Firefox 3 days earlier
  8. Google is still the dominant player for internet searching, well at least in New Zealand anyway

I know that this was hardly a scientific survey, but it did stimulate some interesting discussion.

Google Forms (survey tool in Google Docs) and Wordle (word clouds) are a powerful combination of tools that could be used effectively across a range of subjects in a variety of ways. If anyone would like to contribute their experiences or ideas then do feel free to reply to this post.

Implementing Google Apps Education Edition – the experience so far

Well I am in the middle of my busiest time as a teacher and eLearning Director – believe it or not but I am supposed to be in the middle of the summer holidays. I haven’t posted since September last year with good reason. In Mid October 2009 our school made the decision to go ahead with my recommendation for a Google Apps Education Edition deployment. As you can see from previous posts a small number of staff used Google Docs effectively and were able to share those benefits with key decision-makers.

Preparations

With staff off on the 7 week summer holiday break around mid-December I felt the need to do the changeover before then so that they receive some training and use the Apps over the holidays.  I set a target date of Monday 30th November with the migration of old email from Microsoft Exchange on the preceding weekend. Our IT Department did the initial set-up but we decided to contact a Google representative in New Zealand, Jan Zawadski of Cloudbreak, to assist with the migration to ensure its success. Although this was at a cost it was well worthwhile as we could use his experience from assisting business adoption of Enterprise Apps. It was also important that the change-over be relatively smooth for the 140 staff involved otherwise we could lose their goodwill.

Roll-out to Staff

First off an email was sent to staff 3 weeks ahead (9th November) informing them of the upcoming change and what it would mean. As you can see from the information sheet (Wellington College Gmail change) we introduced it as an EMAIL change as this is where staff would feel the most impact. Also, all teaching staff were told that they would be given the option of having Gmail running through Microsoft Outlook but not until mid February 2010 – it was important for them to try the Gmail interface fully before they opted back to what they were familiar with.

One of the recommendations from the our Google Rep was to set up a Google Help Site and to modify one of the templates available. As I had already used a Google Site with my rugby team I found this to be a relatively simple exercise - Wellington College Google Apps Support.

Gmail Training

With a successful migration over the weekend, I then ran several 45 minute Gmail training sessions throughout Monday 30th November and Tuesday 1st December for the staff. Here is what was covered [There is a Word Doc copy at bottom of page - feel free to download and modify the training session for yourself].

Feedback from the sessions was very positive with staff pleased with the extra functionality of Gmail. Some who already had personal Gmail accounts commented that they were not aware of all of the extras that they learnt about. One of the things that I promoted heavily was the ability for users to search for old emails using the power of Google search and the advanced search features – this was definitely a winner.

We had made the decision to allow all of the support staff (approximately 30) to run Gmail through the Microsoft Outlook interface. The biggest measure of success is that within 2 weeks all but one staff member (a power user of Outlook) had opted to stay with the Gmail web interface. Outstanding! Of course I was called on to help individuals one-on-one leading into Christmas. The biggest misunderstanding by staff about Gmail that I came across was the difference between folders and labels.

Calendar Training

A week later I followed up the Gmail training with Google Calendar Training. I had already discussed with school management the idea of separate Google Calendars for the school events. The first is for staff events which remains private, however it was decided to have 2 public calendars for school events:

  • Wellington College Public – is a calendar for parents, students, staff and the wider College community events
  • Wellington College Assessments – is a calendar which Heads of Departments agreed to put all internal and external assessment information for Senior classes. This means that parents and students can track when assessments are due and departments can see when there is a heavy workload on students.

Link to Calendar Training Session

Google Calendar was the tool that originally converted me to Google Applications back in August 2008. I can already see from staff reaction that Google Calendar is going to prove to be a powerful tool in the school.

14 Days until  Student Roll-out

Well 1550 students return in 2 weeks time and will be pleasantly surprised to find that staff are confidently using Gmail and Google Calendar. They will also be given new network logins which will sync through to their new Gmail accounts. After some deliberation we decided to name student users in the format: “surname,first initial, first year,@ school domain” eg smithj07@wellington-college.school.nz – the purpose being that we can filter the students by year level or organise them by surname. One thing that we have discovered is that Google will need to improve the their Administration tools very soon to make it easier for administrators to run Apps institutions with a large number of users.

To encourage students and staff to use Google Docs I have been busy over the last few days creating a variety of useful templates. We will also be using Google Forms extensively throughout the school.

Finally, the College is launching a new Moodle Site concurrently with the Google Apps launch. I am also busy building and populating the site. This was another decision, made last October, to replace our old Microsoft SharePoint intranet (Now you can see why I haven’t posted for 4 months). The Moodle site is not ready yet but I will be writing a post about it in early February.

Well that’s all for now. I hope you get something out of this post.

Happy New Year
Mark

Fantastic Forms

I have been meaning to write this post for some time now so here it is.

At the start of this school year (February for those in the Northern Hemisphere) I started introducing Google Forms (surveys) with my own classes and also to other teachers. For those not aware, Google Forms are a function of Google Docs. They are very simple to create – simplicity of use being one of Google’s principles. Information from submitted forms feeds into a Google Spreadsheet and results can also be viewed in a nice graphical summary view.

Here is a list of some of the ways that I have used Forms with my classes and activity groups:

  • Group Preferences – My History class were placed in groups for one of the topics. They gave me confidential feedback as to who in the class they felt most comfortable working with.
  • Intro to the Course Questionnaire – used to gather student knowledge at the beginning of a course
  • Word Association tasks – used to gather a range of words students associate with a topic – This example is from my Year 9 History class for words associated with “Ancient Rome”. The words were then pasted into Wordle.net to make a word cloud.
  • End of Topic Surveys – Great for gathering information on what type of activities the students thought were the most useful or enjoyable and of course etc.
  • Gathering Contact List Details – I used this to create contact lists for parents of my care group (Form Class), for the Rugby Team that I coached and of course emailing lists for my classes
  • Online Application Forms – The Tech Crew students who I help organise applied for membership via a Google Form
  • Class Vote – My Web Design class voted anonymously for the best website produced as part of an assignment [I won't give the link to this one as my students names are listed]
  • Team Vote – My Rugby Team voted anonymously for end of season prizes for Most Valuable Player, Most Consistent Player etc. [Again my players names are listed so I won't link for privacy reasons]
  • Group Member and Topic Preferences – My Year 9 History Class informed me of who they were working with in their groups and their preferred topics for research projects.

Here are some of the ways that Forms have been used school wide:

  • Professional Development Feedback – I have run a range of Teacher Professional Development workshops on Moodle and Google Docs.
  • School Survey – Members of our school community (students, teachers, parents) were invited to complete a survey on the qualities that they thought were important in a Wellington College (our school) learner.
  • Teacher Workshop Choices – on our last Professional Development day Teachers completed an emailed form to choose between a range of workshops
  • Scholarship Practice Examination Slots – Our Deputy Principal gathered choices of slots for optional practice exams (to be held this week and next). Some of the subjects were held at the same time whereas others were the students choices when to sit. All of this information was gathered and collated from well over 100 students. The Deputy Principal said that it saved him at least 10 hours of collation and chasing up students.
  • Sports Day Entries – Our Head of Sports just today asked me to design a form for approximately 500 students to choose events to compete in along with their DOB, Age Groups etc for next February’s Sports Day
I have created Links to some of the forms above to give you an idea of how I have designed them. Please do NOT complete or any of them submit. It is worth noting that you can turn the forms on and off depending on whether you wish to accept responses or not.

Other features are:

  • A choice of themes to make the forms more visually attractive
  • The forms can be emailed as a link or added to web pages by embedding or linking
  • One great feature is that you can add additional information into new columns in the spreadsheet without affecting later entries into the form
  • All entries are time/date-stamped so that you know when the information was submitted
  • Already mentioned are the great summary tools which automatically create useful graphs for quick analysis
If you have not used Google Forms then do give them a go. They are VERY SIMPLE. Just create a Google Account if you haven’t already and start using them….You won’t look back. They have saved many hours of time for myself and a growing number of our Teaching, Administration and Management staff.
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