1 Find Your WordPress Dashboard
2 Quick Assessment Strategy using Google Sheets
1 Find Your WordPress Dashboard
How do I find my dashboard?
That’s the cry I heard on Facebook and one I asked myself when the new dashboard was missing the places I needed to go, such as categories or just a list of my blogposts.
And watch the video for another funny story for why I needed the Dashboard!
The lesson here we’ve learned by helping each other, and since it is a big one, that’s what I decided to share while learning ScreenCast O’Matic.
I watched the suggested help video, which is a little old, and some of the things are different. Notes are added after publishing; captions can be added during your review. It’s a fairly easy process, but does involving downloading the program that helps you run the online version. That’s a java program, I believe, which many are steering away from due to security issues. I don’t think I could use Safari with it.
Anyway, I think anyone following the onscreen directions could use the online free app without watching the help video. Just follow the directions. If you want to add a caption, a little help document pops up to show you how to create and upload a txt document with the time and caption. This was important to me because I goofed on the video and didn’t want to redo for one goof. So I added the caption to show what I meant to say; you’ll see it at the bottom of the video. So the app is easy to use and is easy to upload in a streaming format that is a small size and still of quality in audio and visual.
I did not follow directions; I uploaded to Screencast O’matic thinking I could upload to YouTube from there. Wrong. I wanted to see how that part worked — it was easy and fairly fast. However, it does have ads and chose its own cover pic, which I could not see how to change. So to get my YouTube video, I downloaded the video and uploaded it to YouTube, where I at least have some choice for the cover pic. Download and upload on my slow internet was fast too because of the way Screencast O’matic compresses the video into mp4 format. That’s a big deal for me.
I had heard of Screencast O’matic for years, but never used it. The Quick Time on my Mac records my screen, a webcam video, or screen on my iPhone. The video files are huge though and take thirty minutes to upload an eight-minute video to YouTube with my slow internet access. I can use the mp4 downloaded from Screencast O’matic in iMovie, so that is a benefit, and may help reduce the size of those files, so that’s a consideration, and something I’ll try.
If there’s a process or expectation for students, make a screencast. For example, in Google Classroom, there are things I expect students to be able to know how to do and check, so I could make a screencast. I made a screencast for the Google Research Tool and How to Bookmark. Or formatting: spreadsheet text wrap or spreadsheet text align top. Once one kid knows, they will show others. If you get a new student, the videos are ready. But the best idea: have the kids make the HowTo videos! Store them in Google Drive or YouTube and link to them from the class website. I had my kids create a few for student-parent-teacher conferences to share with families. Very sweet.
Help! How do I get to my dashboard?
YouTube Video Link
Screencastomatic Video Link and iframe embed:
Part 2 Quick Assessment Strategy using Google Sheets
I learned this at a GAFE Summit, and it has truly changed my ability to quickly assess student learning on the spot, or to gather student ideas during discussions.
I prepare a Google Spreadsheet set to “anyone can edit.” I place a link in my classroom website/slides to which students have immediate access. Of course, I show them how to enter and format cell data first before expecting them to respond to a question. That’s the Sandbox in the video.
First, if we are discussing an issue in a project, and all of a sudden the class bursts with ideas, we “Share Out” in this Google Spreadsheet activity. When everyone has added their ideas, we look at them and continue our conversation, OR break into smaller groups based on students’ agreement/disagreement with ideas to research, discuss, and meet up later with better info on our issues.
Second, as we’re learning, I may want to ask the class or a small group a question to assess their learning or perceptions. So again we choose the “Share Out” spreadsheet for students to add their name in a cell and their response. I can then easily delete those cell responses to be ready for the next class. Delete? Yes! Because at the end of the day, I use “Revision History” to return each class’s responses. I can restore to that class history, read to see next steps for us, decide to copy the info into another spreadsheet to either share with the class, or add feedback and print out then cut up the rows for each student.
The history for each class is always stored.
I can then return to the current version of the spreadsheet that started that day.
It’s so awesome. Sounds confusing — but it isn’t! Here’ how:
What if I decided later I want to save those previous versions of student responses — or the current one [instead of delete]? Here’s how:
Using Google Sheets, quickly Assess Student learning, or gather discussion information. Delete cell responses to prep easily for next class. Use revision history to review, print, copy, feedback for each set of class responses. Here’s the spreadsheet I used, set to “anyone can view.” Just be logged in to your google account and choose File–> Make a Copy for your very own copy!