Monday, April 20, 2020

No One SAW this Coming, but we SEE NISD Keeping Learning Alive!

We can all agree that the current situation is not ideal. Educators are unable to expect what they normally would from students. While teachers can’t recreate their normal classroom environment, our Northwest ISD educators are amazing! They have been able to keep learning and literacy alive, connect with their students, capture their voice, provide personalized feedback, and involve families as an integral part of their child’s growth. For K-2 teachers, Seesaw has been the platform for making these goals a reality. Mrs. Fitch, Mrs. Perry, Mrs. Davis, Mrs. Embry, and Mrs. Moore from Granger Elementary have not only used Seesaw with fidelity all year, they’ve gone up and beyond to meet the needs of their students as they learn and grow from home. 

Continual Learning: 
Each Sunday, teachers send required and optional assignments home for students to complete. Perhaps one of the best features within Seesaw is the ability to capture student voice by allowing students to explain their thinking. With provided structure through Seesaw activities, teachers can encourage students to take their learning deeper with questions and question stems. One of Mrs. Davis’ favorite activities during remote learning is the Animal Adaptations science activity. Listen to the student’s understanding of adaptation, their language of the discipline used, and their ability to apply this learning to a real life situation. 

Click HERE to Enlarge and Listen

Continual Literacy: 
One of NISD’s goals for this year is literacy. Seesaw has allowed teachers to encourage students to keep reading and share their reading while they’re at home. One of Mrs. Perry’s favorite activities sent home to her Kinder class encouraged her readers to simply capture a picture of themselves reading. Mrs. Perry shares, “This activity not only encourages reading, but gives me a chance to see and listen to them read.”  
Click HERE to Enlarge and Listen

ELA coach Rebecca Maddox points out, “Seesaw is benefiting students, parents and teachers during this remote learning time with it's ease of use. Seesaw has allowed our youngest readers and writers the ability to respond and capture their thinking in a variety of ways. They use pictures and voice recordings to capture their thinking for others to view. It is great to see that students can document their reading and writing lives in this format to capture how they continue to grow and learn!”
Students from across NISD are reading and sharing their reading. The first week of extended break, Mrs. Moore sent an optional Seesaw activity to her class asking them to share about a book they read and one they are hoping to finish. These activities have since led to a deeper knowledge of books as the latest activity prompted readers to not only read, but to stop and jot information about the characters in their book. Get a glimpse into’s Reese’s reading HERE or by clicking the images below.

Click HERE to Enlarge and Listen

Stop and Jot (Week of April 12)

Engaging students in their learning is one of Mrs. Embry’s favorite aspects of Seesaw. She states, “Seesaw provides me the opportunity to create engaging lessons that allow students to respond in a way they are comfortable with. They can create a picture with drawing tools, type, or create a video.” Mrs. Embry, Mrs. Davis, and the Granger second grade team have personalized reading assignments by linking in an Adobe Spark video encouraging students to find fun places to read as they work on their reading stamina. It's fun for students to connect with their teachers by seeing them teach and encourage in the videos they send home.

Click HERE to Enlarge 
Mrs. Embry’s Spark Video
Mrs. Davis’ Spark Video 

Connecting with Students (SEL): 
It’s tough not seeing student’s faces each day. It’s important that students know how to identify their feelings, but also that they have a platform to share and be heard. NISD has prioritized social and emotional learning this year, which has helped equip our students beyond their content knowledge. Granger students are especially familiar with “Seesaw Feeling Checks.” These activities have become especially important as teachers get a pulse for how their students are doing, even when they can’t see them each day. Click on the image below to see an example of Mrs. Perry and Mrs. Moore’s feelings check. 

Click HERE to Enlarge

Mrs. Fitch points out, “My favorite part of using Seesaw is being able to connect with my students! I love being able to post videos directly to their journals and I love getting videos from them even more. It is nice to be able to post work for one student, or the entire class with one click.” Mrs. Fitch continually provides her students with personalized video feedback. Check out how Mrs. Fitch used Seesaw to wish one special student a Happy Birthday and make her feel special even from afar.
The heart of our NISD teachers is what makes students excited to learn!
Click HERE to Enlarge and Listen

Providing Personalized Feedback: 
Another benefit of Seesaw is that it protects the privacy of our students and allows teachers to differentiate and provide personalized feedback for students without displaying that feedback to the entire class. Mrs. Perry is very intentional about giving writing feedback on student work. Click on the image below to see samples from the last few weeks. 
Click HERE to Enlarge
Seesaw allows feedback to be written, voiced in an audio comment, or even a personalized video.
Inviting Families Into The Learning:
Mrs. Davis comments, "By using Seesaw daily, parents are able to see what content we are working on and what products their child is creating.  Parents have been very thankful for this program as Seesaw is sparking conversations as home, and parents are able to connect our learning at school to real world situations at home."
Click HERE to Enlarge
Click HERE to Enlarge

Student Growth: 
Lastly, another NISD goal for the year is that students showing yearly growth. Since Seesaw is the house for these student’s learning, teachers are able to see growth over time. Mrs. Davis states, “We have used Seesaw since day one as our students’ academic portfolio, so seeing growth is easy when you compare assignments from the first few weeks of school to their current work.”
Mrs. Fitch adds, “Being able to provide feedback and having the students go back and check their work has allowed me to see growth in their writing. I have assigned the Daily Oral Language activity for three weeks and have seen growth from week to week.” 
NISD is the Place to Be: 
Our NISD teachers are a walking example of this quote by George Couros, “Technology will not replace great teachers, but technology in the hands of great teachers can be transformational.” Our teachers have thrived in a season of uncertainty. While the situation is not ideal, these teachers have not thrown in the towel. They’ve connected in a way that shows their heart for students and their heart for learning. 

*The NISD IT Team is happy to announce that NISD has purchased Seesaw for Schools for the upcoming school years. This purchase is for all NISD schools ages Pre-K to 5th grade. Click HERE to learn more.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.