Using the Voki is probably "old hat" with most of you, but I wanted to share that when I create a Voki to introduce the topics in my economics classes, the students think it's really neat. I find this interesting since the students sitting in my classroom know most all the technology tricks available.
I am also going to try to use backchanneling this semester with those who bring laptops to class. Many of my colleagues are forbidding laptops in class as Harvard has done. My thought is that if I can engage them throughout my class session to actually use their laptops as part of our instruction, we will all benefit. Of course, I have found an occasional student sitting in the back watching a movie, but I don't throw the baby out with the bath water . My findings usually reveal that the "movie watcher" generally doesn't pass the course anyway. That's what we call Unintended Consequences on his part.
I haven't used backchanneling, but can't it be done on smart phones as well as laptops? I know I saw a technology presenter hold up his phone and tell us he was backchanneling on it during the presentation. That would probably offer the opportunity to a wider audience, and eliminate any 'laptop in class' stigma!
And I totally agree that if you are watching a movie in class you get what you deserved....lol
I've used back channeling with adults, but received some back lash when introducing it to teachers in a rural school district. If you are in K-12, be careful!
I recommend & have used Wiffiti. Here's a good web site with explanations for classroom use: http://web20edu.com/2010/03/20/five-ways-to-teach-with-wiffiti-in-the-classroom/
Kids love doing presentations with Voki, especially the shy ones.
I teach Computer Literacy to K - 6 grades. I taught the students how to create a Voki. They loved creating their own avatar. I used the voki in my class website to add some pizzazz to it. In my website I have the voki tell each grade level what they will be learning this comming school year. I will use this to demonstrate to the students how they can use their own voki to present a project to their class. I think this will be alot of fun for the students and I am hoping that this will make that reluctant student to finally step up to the bat.
Here is a link from Twitter this morning about backchanneling and Hotseat on college campuses. Thought you might find it interesting--Sharron B.
Thanks for that link. I checked it out and think I think I will forge ahead with the backchanneling especially in my larger classes like the UTD professor did. UTD is notorious for putting 80 + in their upper level classes so I'm sure finding a way to get discussions going are always being tried. You noted that she does have a TA to help monitor, but because my class-size for my econ classes are held to no more than 35 it is manageable for me.
Keep the cards and letters coming. Appreciate it.
Worked great! Provided some very interesting interactions and discussions. I'm using it again this Thursday in review for the final exam. Yes, they use smart phones, androids, laptops, Ipads and whatever mobile device they have in their hands.
Plan on wrapping it up with a Polleverywhere multiple-choice question about the course.