Student content creation is an emphasis this school year. In an effort to make this happen, I’m purposefully incorporating digital student content creation opportunities in my classes. Specifically, students are given a choice in being able to show mastery of a particular math concept through a presentation. These projects are student created with different types of presentation apps.
For example … to begin our latest math unit on pre-algebra, students were gathered together and I previewed the different math concepts that were going to be part of the unit. I used the mastery objectives for this. Students chose to be an “expert” for a particular concept within the unit. The concept that the student chose will be presented to the class in the future. The term “expert” was something I didn’t consider while preparing the project. It’s interesting because I’m finding that students often speak up when we arrive at a particular lesson that they’re “experts” in.
The class and I then developed a rubric for the project.
You can find an editable sample rubric here. Students then started to research their particular concept and began compiling resources. Students used their journal, different online sites, manipulatives, whiteboards, and other resources to research information about their topic. Students were then given time to explore the app and become more familiar with some of the features. Since they were already familiar with Educreations, students were able to adjust to the learning curve of using Explain Everything. There are many of features in Explain Everything and it took a good amount of time to explore them all. Students worked on their presentations about twice per week for about three weeks. Students then presented their projects to the class near the end of the unit.
Right now the class is building a repertoire of technology tools that have the potential to be used later in the school year. At some point I’m going to ask the students to pick their own tool to show mastery. I continue to find that student content creation brings out a student ownership piece. That ownership piece can be powerful.