social media project

Presentation Reflection: Social Media and Student Voices

 

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Today the last of the students gave their presentations on their solutions to involving student voices in social media. They’ve been working on this project for awhile, and they ended up with many different solutions, though some ideas tended to overlap with each other. We were able to get a few audience members to join us as well- an administrator from the high school, a school board member, and the superintendent as well. We made sure the students had a genuine audience available during presentations. Presentations occurred over two days, and students chose their date and time.

Each presentation took between 5 and 10 minutes, with students and other audience members asking questions at the end of each one. Presenters were asked to dress professionally during their presentation, and this was definitely noticed by the audience members, who complimented them on this effort. Mr. McCauley and I had made sure that the students had a realistic presentation, as though they were presenting to a marketing firm. With the exception of one student, every presenter wore professional dress. We did assist any student with this requirement as long as they let us know in advance that they did not have an outfit that met the requirements.

The first day of presentations, we had Mr. Lee, our administrator, and Mrs. Johnson, our school board member, watching the students who presented. Both were familiar faces to the students, and some of them were former students of Johnson’s. On the second and final day, Mrs. Keller, our superintendent, joined us for presentations, tweeting out about each one as the students finished. All audience members complimented the students on their hard work, and seemed to be pleased with the information given.

Having viewed and graded each presentation, I can say that I saw many doable ideas. I think the best option that was presented (that met the needs of the entire student body) was one that formed a “Student Voices” club. The club members would take on the task of using Twitter to share information relevant to and by students. She chose to use Twitter as her medium, and, in order to combat moderation, looked into using a program called GroupTweet to keep negative posts from appearing online in the school feed. Because it would be a club, new members would be gathered each year, and trained by the older members on how to run the club. One teacher or other staff member would be needed as an advisor/moderator.

Another useful idea was geared to athletics. Though our school already has many clubs/groups on Facebook and Twitter, one just for athletics is severely lacking. This particular student plays football, and came up with ways to make sure scores for a variety of sports are posted via Twitter and Facebook feeds. What I enjoyed so much about this particular presentation was that the student took the problem and discovered how it was relevant to his own life and interests.

Some other good points made by students:

  • Showcase a Twitter feed in the cafeteria area
  • Send direct messages to the social media accounts to have something added and shared.
  • Vet the students running the sites based on teachers, applications, etc.
  • Add in social media projects as part of an elective course, like marketing

I really enjoyed seeing what the students came up with in the end. I think we definitely could work with them some more on mock presentations and presentation skills. We did give them tips, but just because they were written out doesn’t mean that students read/followed them. It might be good to practice the tips a few times before the actual presentation. Giving students the chance to do a mock presentation to get feedback and suggestions from classmates was a great idea. Those that mock presented took the feedback to heart and made changes before their final presentation. Part of me wishes that the mock presentations had been mandatory, but only because could have helped more students be successful.

Overall, I was very impressed. I will soon do a recap of the project as a whole. And yes, I’m still aware that I haven’t finished my VSTE updates!

Student Voices and Discussions

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The discussions I have had with some students have been very interesting when it comes to their social media projects on student voices. There are some students who are doing it just to get it done, but then there are others who are very concerned with the project and how they can create a solution that would have an impact on the school. This project is my first time really working with high school students, and I’m enjoying some of the discussions that we have had. Two such students immediately come to mind.

The first student I think of is an athlete. When he was first given the final part of the project, he sat and talked to both his teacher and I about his concerns. In his research, he had noted that though there were some social media feeds for our school athletics, they often weren’t updated. He was also concerned with the negativity from students when some teams had a poor season, despite trying their best. He decided that he wanted to create a solution that would allow athletes to share out scores, information on the teams, and positive stories from student athletes.

The second student I think of is one that I spoke with yesterday. She had an idea for a solution, but wasn’t sure how to work out all of the kinks. Her idea involved Twitter, but she wasn’t sure about moderating or how to go about getting someone to do it. Through our talks I shared GroupTweet with her and how that might work. Conversation then delved into starting a club that would be in charge of gathering positive student stories and voices from all over the school, and then using GroupTweet to post. The site offers a moderation feature, so things wouldn’t be posted until the club advisor approved them. It provides chances for teachable moments, too. Her biggest concerns involved finding someone willing, and if she would have to be in the club. She was concerned about the project, but it wasn’t something that she was into joining, which was fine, and she was reassured of this.

I meet with the class again Friday, and I’m hoping to have more detailed discussions with some of the other students as well. This project is really taking shape, and I’m eager to see how presentations will go next month.

Student Voices on Social Media

Over the past few weeks, I have been working with a classroom at Fluvanna County High School to solve a problem that was proposed by Superintendent Keller: How do we get student voices involved and sharing positive stories of our school district?

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I’ve been updating every so often about how I’m working to get the district together and all schools working to share the positive stories that come from each school. Superintendent Keller loves the idea and wants to take it further. She suggested I work with the economics/marketing teacher and come up with a way to do this with his students. I had never worked with this teacher before, but as soon as we connected, we were both excited with the possibilities that this problem could bring.

In time, we developed a project with a basic plan:

  • Step 1: Research 3 marketing brands/companies and explore their use of social media
  • Step 2: Research 3 ways Fluvanna County School district uses social media (students would be provided with a list)
  • Step 3: Create a project to solve the problem presented by the superintendent.

We fleshed out the plan further, including discussion questions to lead in/exit, presentations before Superintendent Keller and some of the school board members, and the use of Google Classroom for the entire project. We left the final project very open-ended because we wanted to simulate solving a problem in the marketing world. We knew some students would balk at this, as they were used to being told exactly how to get an A. All we did was make sure they knew what parts needed to be answered as part of their proposal. How they created the final presentation, and how they solved the issue itself was entirely up to them.

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The only snag we ran into with getting started was students not being able to view any kind of social media on the student wi-fi network. They were unable to view Twitter or Facebook. This was a hurdle, as these students needed to be able to find examples and explain how each company/brand utilized social media. In the end we pooled the teacher devices that we had (2 laptops, a desktop, and a Chromebook) and allowed different groups to use them under supervision for their research, and then return at the end of class.

Currently, students are working on their final project presentations. They were allowed to use anything they wanted, but most used Slides or PowerPoint. Some are exploring Prezi or Powtoons as well. We are making sure that students have tips and tricks to utilize when creating their presentations that will help them create professional ones.

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Later, I’ll share some highlights from discussion questions and projects. For now, I’ll continue to update and share images of students hard at work, as well as images of the final presentations, which will be December 9th, 13th, and 16th.

Positive Post Friday: 10/28/16

It’s Friday and that means it’s time for another Positive Post Friday!

Fridays mark the end of the work week. Fridays mark the start of the weekend. Fridays should end the week on a positive note. Therefore, I’m going to share 5 positive things that happened this week:

  1. This is not educational and happened last weekend. I got to go back to my hometown and visit with my family and my 3 favorite kiddos. I made sure it was kept secret from the kids, and it was well worth it!
  2. I have successfully split my game designer club into two groups, which will allow me to give each student more feedback and spend more time 1:1 with them.
  3. I have been working with the economics/marketing teacher again this week, and the students have had some fantastic thoughts about potential solutions to the problem that has been presented to them about student voices in social media. I can’t wait to see what they create.
  4. I made quite a few connections at the last game designers meeting. So many of my kids like Pokemon or Minecraft, so I can easily bring that up from time to time as we build relationships.
  5. I was able to complete another PD Google Classroom course, this time on using Skype in the Classroom.

Your turn: Share your Positive Post Friday.

Until next Friday! Have a great weekend!

Positive Post Friday: 10/21/16

It’s Friday and that means it’s time for another Positive Post Friday! I didn’t post one last week because things got hectic at work, as it seems to be usual for a Friday.

Fridays mark the end of the work week. Fridays mark the start of the weekend. Fridays should end the week on a positive note. Therefore, I’m going to share 5 positive things that happened this week:

  1. I got to watch a student present his Genius Hour project that he had created. I had assisted him with learning the basics of game design, and he used that to design his own game and wrote up a game pitch template.
  2. Tuesday I was excited to attend a training to learn about Promethean boards and Classflow. It was a daylong training and I feel ready to help assist others in incorporating the technology into their classrooms.
  3. This week I was able to hold second sessions for a few of my Connected Educators crew. They are really starting to get the hang of things and enjoying learning about utilizing Twitter and blogs.
  4. Today I worked with the economics and marketing teacher at the high school to begin implementing our social media project. The superintendent has asked that the class find a way to solve the issue of the lack of student voices in our social media accounts. The students got started today and they did really well. They are currently working to research brands/companies and how they use social media to market themselves.
  5. This one isn’t school related, but on Sunday, my fiance and I had our save the date photos taken. We got some wonderful shots, and can’t wait to see how they turn out in the end. She and I had a few prop signs we’d brought with us as well.

Your turn: Share your Positive Post Friday.

Until next Friday! Have a great weekend!