“Technology Gives The Quietest Student A Voice.” – Jerry Blumengarten.
I absolutely love this quote. It is such a powerful reason to use technology in the classroom.
But what does Jerry Blumengarten mean?
A few years ago, I had a painfully shy and quiet class. I would try and get the lesson ‘going’ with an exciting question, to which some rolling tumbleweed was the class response.
I had to find a way to get these children answering questions and engaged in discussions.
The ‘non-tech’ way I used was mini-whiteboards. Children could write their answers on the boards and then hold them up to show me their responses.
This was good for instant recall and feedback, however it was not so good for class discussions and more in-depth learning.
Technology was the answer.
First, I set up a classroom chatroom using Todaysmeet.com. This allowed the students to have discussions during lessons by typing questions and answers into the chatroom. I could respond verbally or type – so could the other pupils. It really worked wonders. In fact, I am sure it gave the students confidence because as the school year progressed they did become more and more verbal. Click here to see my tutorial on how to use Todays Meet.
I also used Google Classroom. Students who weren’t confident enough to ask me or the class questions when they were finding learning difficult, could put it on the feed or use a direct message. This was particularly useful for home learning (before I asked pupils why they hadn’t handed in homework and hadn’t realised that they were too shy to ask for support).
In conclusion, tech really does give quiet students a voice and for this reason alone it must be both celebrated and embedded into every classroom.
Have you had an experience like this? What strategies did you use? Let me know by commenting below.