First off, sorry for the Reeses’ rip-off…now on to my post. I rolled out CoverIt Live with all seven of my classes today. It went rather well…a few minor technical glitches, several stressed students, and a bit-o-scrambling on my part. I wanted to show a Discovery Education video to my classes, the topic was about 9/11.
This would be a perfect opportunity to also show the students CoverIt Live. I wanted to make sure the students were focused on the video, not other things, so I thought of my options. A worksheet full of questions to complete would probably only be done by a few and copied by many, so it was out of the mix. Discussion is good, but pausing and discussing interesting sections fragments the video and waiting to pause may lessen discussion. I went with an option many of the students have already experienced; texting while watching videos. This would give us live discourse without totally disrupting the video.
The iPods were handed out as usual in class and one student in each class got to use the lone iPad my classes have at this time. The students logged into the Edmodo online classroom, then jumped to the sub-groups. I embedded a separate CIL for each class on a different wiki page…past experiences have shown that the sharing of pages causes issues with my students. This is also why I posted the links in the sub-groups, there would be no chance of clicking on the wrong link.
The set up of CoverIt Live can be found here on a previous post.
We watched about the first ten minutes or so of the videos and had the students post a few basic comments. They introduced themselves and made one or two general comments. They were urged to use first name and last initial as their post ID. There was one student who tried to use a pseudonym. The comments were not published, though appropriate, and the students were once again asked to use their real names. I did not try to figure out who the student was…no harm, no foul in my book.
My first period was a bit hesitant with the process, I had about five or six students adding most of the posts. Once the others found out they would get participation points for the assignment, I had most of the class jump into CIL. We actually had students turning in iPods after the dismissal bell in an attempt to get participation points. The timestamp shows when comments were submitted, so I can monitor the process. Other classes were very interested in the processes, both video and CIL, and we almost ran late in several classes.
Later, several students had to log out earlier classes from Edmodo before they could log in, which happens on occasion with the iPods. Running 24-25 iPods through one airport, along with several other machines can bog things down, especially when dealing with Cold War Era cement walls. A few others had previous students names in the ID window…I am not sure how that happened since each class had its own CIL and its own wiki page, but it seems that CIL remembers ID names on each device. The students were focused, for the most part, on the assignment and since we did not have time to finish the video in class, I placed the session on “Standby” and we will continue the process tomorrow.
We did spend a few minutes to discuss etiquette on how to respond to others questions and comments. I used the free CIL app on my Droid X to walk around the room and review any comments that might need “refined” before they hit the “public” Internet site.
There was an overwhelming preference by the students to use CIL when working with videos in class instead of using worksheets. They seemed genuinely interested in continuing the effort and even expanding it to working with other classes via Skype later in the year. I hope to utilize Skype in the Classroom to achieve that goal soon.
The lesson can be completed with any type of mobile technology, or computer. All you need is to be 1:1 students to computers, therein lies the problem for many…