Refining the Action Plan

As with past Face-2-Faces, I left the third Cohort 21 session at MaRS Discovery District so incredibly inspired! Not only was being surrounded by a building focused on innovation inspiring in of itself, I am consistently amazed by the fabulous ideas of the Cohort 21 clan! Thanks to their input, I have made some revisions to my Action Plan.

Narrowing the Focus

Taking the suggestion of a great Cohort 21 Coach, instead of taking a broad approach, I am going to be focusing on two facets of the Technology Integration MatrixConstructive and Active. I believe these resonate the most with my iPad documentation project , as I am eager to have “students consistently have opportunities to select technology tools and use them in the way that best facilitates their construction of understanding” (constructive) and have “students understand how to use many types of technology tools, are able to select tools for specific purposes, and use them regularly.” Although I am limited in my ability to grow to the Transformative stage for the environment, as the classroom teacher, it will be my goal to expose my young learners to the technology tools available to them, and guide them through the process of applying it to demonstrate their understanding.

Sesame HQ

Sesame HQ is a game changer. My initial plan of using iMovie to allow the students to produce a film of their learning would have been well received by my students, but as soon as I saw the capabilities of Sesame HQ, I knew that this would be a much more dynamic and interactive tool to use.


Each student only has one item in their feed so far, but I anticipate that they will all enjoy going back in time to see where they started! I also anticipate that they will find the app easy to use without my assistance once we get over some initial bumps.

Early Discoveries

I have begun this project with my students and here are some brief observations that I have made thus far:

  • My students think big! The scope of the project makes me nervous (for example, one student would like to construct a ‘bike ski’), but also incredibly excited.
  • My students are not intimidated. They grabbed the iPad with eagerness and familiarity.
  • My students know what they want. When given the choice to record a video or take a picture, each SK happily selected a medium. I look forward to seeing if there are similarities in selections over time.
  • My students are inexperienced. Starting this project has opened my eyes to the importance of breaking technology-related skills down into smaller chunks. I immediately thought the SKs could use Siri to scribe their thoughts, but they do not yet understand the importance of volume and clarity in getting accurate representation. New lessons will have to be developed along the way – for example, tomorrow we will be playing a game that involves the SKs saying a sight word into the mic and having their peers tell them if they said it clearly enough to be written correctly on the Smart-Board screen.
  • My students really are 21st century learners! When I handed them their QR code to scan, no child thought it was unusual that this black and white scribble would lead them to something they could use.

I can’t wait to see what these wonderful students are capable of!

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8 Responses to Refining the Action Plan

  1. Derek Doucet says:

    Hi Jessica,
    This is a really exciting action plan! I think it’s great that you’ve focused in on two aspect of the TIM so that you can really get at the heart of the matter. This is a great follow up to your previous post and that you’re running with what you had in mind in the first place… but with new tools!!

    In terms of scribing your thoughts and Ipads, could they use the dictation feature in Google Docs? I have a Macbook Air and the dictation feature in GDocs is pretty easy to use. It could work with any word processor. Just a thought.

    The inquiry based learning that is taking place in your classroom is fantastic, and I look forward to checking in on your progress. Keep up the great work of inspiring those young minds to think big!

    • Jessica says:

      Thanks, Derek! I am thankful for your suggestions on the last blog post to help me refine the idea.

      I have not tried the dictation feature in google docs – I will definitely give that a whirl! I worked with the kids and siri again yesterday, and most of them did really well, but the ones whose articulation isn’t quite there yet ran into some difficulties. I am eager to see if that would work better!

      And thank you! Thinking big is one of our main goals in SK 😀

  2. Ed Hitchcock says:

    I love that you are diving in with the tools. I’ve played a bit with Sesame HQ, it seems like a very useful addition!

  3. Jessica,

    Let me know if you want to come by York for a visit to see how we use Sesame HQ in JS/SK. Happy to also set up a call to chat about photo management tips. We have certainly learned much since implementing in September.


    • Jessica says:

      Justin, that would be amazing! I would love to make that happen. We are only working off of one iPad right now, so photo management hasn’t been too much of an issue, but I am working on getting us a class set and tips on that would be most helpful.

  4. Hey Jessica,

    WOW! You are rolling and have some great initial ideas about your action plan. It is inspiring to see how you are taking in some of the ideas of the F2F sessions and using these to refine and improve your vision for your learning this year.

    I feel like your work so far would be an AWESOME example for the project tuning protocol, since you already have done some things in the classroom and possibly have some worthwhile questions you could pose to get feedback. Would you be up for this? Email me!

    [email protected]

    • Jessica says:

      Thanks, Celeste! Sorry I missed the first project tuning protocol. (February was nuts!) I am looking forward to being part of the session this coming week!

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