Chapter 8: Documenting with Text and Visual Platforms and Tools in Mind
1. Brainstorm visible thinking routine prompts that can aid your students or colleagues in creating visible evidence of their learning during a backchannel experience (e.g., Twitter chat, TodaysMeet chatroom). You can choose one of Project Zero’s visible thinking routine prompts ), or you can create your own routine prompts customized for a learning focus or goal.
After you have used one or more of the routine prompts during the backchannel chat, reflect on the question: what did I learn from this documenting experience? and then:
- First – Find a partner who has never participated in a backchannel experience before and share digitally or in-person the live backchannel feed (if the backchannel is still live), or a final transcript if you participated in a backchannel experience in a private chatroom, such as TodaysMeet.If you participated in a Twitter chat, search for the hashtag to filter your feed or use a tool, such as Storify.com. After you have explained the context and purpose for the backchannel documentation to your partner and provided time for him or her to read through the posts or tweets, articulate the benefits of having this artifact. Share how you (and your learners, if age-appropriate) can unpack and reflect on the evidence of the learning and analyze if a learner has met the learning focus or goal.
- Second – Discuss your positive reactions and concerns regarding the visual evidence of learning with your partner after you (and possibly, your learners) have unpacked the backchannel transcript or feed. How has what you as a secondary learner, or your students as primary learners, discovered from reading the posts that inform your or their concerning the next learning or re-learning step, as a whole or as individual learners?
To add a degree of amplification, share your and your students’ reflective thoughts about what the textual evidence conveyed via social media. Remember to use the #documenting4learning hashtag on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram; or by mentioning @documenting4learning on Facebook and Instagram, and @doc4learning on Twitter.
2. Have you or your learners ever participated in a #BookSnaps book study? (If you are not familiar with #BookSnaps, read Tara Martin’s post titled Snapping for Learning.) Together with a colleague in your school or office, or via your PLN, conduct a documenting opportunity involving this textual and visual documentation method. #BookSnaps was originally created by Tara Martin as a method for her students and herself to reflect on their reading using Snapchat. Martin has since expanded #BookSnaps beyond Snapchat. Access a series of videos Tara made using alternative platforms, including SeeSaw, Google Drawings, and PicCollage.
In a nutshell, #BookSnaps are screenshots from an ebook or photographs from a physical book. These snaps can be a quote, section of text, or image that resonates with the reader. After snapping the highlighted passage or image, the learner annotexts the image, which could include:
- Providing a concise commentary for personal connection (e.g., I can relate in my classroom; I’m inspired!).
- Adding a digital sticker that supports their message (e.g., personal bitmoji showing a thumbs-up; light bulb). Drawing arrows or other highlighting and framing features to aid viewer’s interaction with the #Booksnaps image.
The learner then saves the annotexted snapped image to his or her camera roll (e.g., hard drive pictures folder, iPhone or iPad’s Photos album). The act of looking for and reflecting on a worthwhile passage or quote from a selected book naturally embeds the learningflow routine steps, including sharing and making strategic decisions regarding amplification degrees. Consider the following scenarios to share and amplify your #Booksnaps reflections:
- Create a photo album on your device to collect individual #BookSnaps images in chronological sequence to convey understanding of the content or connections between different passages or sections over time.
- Publish and disseminate an isolated #BookSnaps image to your PLN, wherein the snap has no connection to any other part of the collective reading.
- E-mail a #BookSnaps image to a colleague in another state or country and recommending the book to him or her.
- Add strategic hashtags (e.g., #BookSnaps, #TitleofBook) to your posts to connect with others who might be reading the same book and can connect and participate in sharing their take-aways.
- Organize or participate in an existing #BookSnaps book club, which discusses your book of interest by contributing #BookSnaps images as evidence from the text.
Explore the documentation benefits of #BookSnaps by participating in your own opportunity. Read a book with your students or colleagues following the #BookSnap directions explained above.
After your book study is completed, amplify your overall #BookSnap experience by sharing your reflective thoughts regarding the documenting opportunity and attach or embed a link to the snap-story collection you created over time. Remember to use #documenting4learning hashtag on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram; or by mentioning @documenting4learning on Facebook and Instagram, and @doc4learning on Twitter.