Online Yearbook Meetings
Melissa Zier, a technology instructor and yearbook adviser at the K-8 St. Francis Episcopal Day School in Houston, uses a free, public social media tool called TodaysMeet to hold quick online meetings of her yearbook class. She sets up a topic for them to work on inTodaysMeet, and the students create their own usernames and logins. Then all their online comments on a topic are captured to create a record that she can store for up to a year.
"I had four boys working on an iMovie together," Zier recalls. "They chose not to sit together in class to work on it, but to hold discussions via TodaysMeet. Throughout the day and in the evening at home, they could add comments or refer to their earlier conversation." On a yearbook T-shirt project, she took student suggestions via a TodaysMeet topic meeting. One advantage of this approach? "I didn't have to open and read 20 Word documents from students."
Only one time has a student used inappropriate language in a TodaysMeet session, she says. "I stopped the class right there and put it up on the projector. It was uncomfortable for that student, but it became a learning moment."
On her wish list is having TodaysMeet integrated with her campus portal or as an RSS feed instead of having to log on to a separate website, but otherwise she is very pleased with it.