Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Who Owns the Learning by Alan November

This is my second post in this summers #cyberpd, Who Owns the Learning by Alan November. hosted by @cathymere, @laurakomos and @jillfisch. To read more of the conversations visit @jillfisch's blog, My Primary Passion, she is hosting this week's post. If you missed last weeks conversation check out Jog the Web compiled by Cathy.
While reading everyone's post  last week I found myself shaking my head asking "Did we all read the same book?" Of course there was a common thread in all the post but,  I noticed so many different perspectives which made my day! Reading all the different perspectives is what makes this such a great event! A HUGE thank you to all who are participating and an EVEN HUGER THANKS (Yes, I said even huger, you know it's "fist gradese", A Primary Perspective speaking here).

This Weeks Thoughts ~ 
Ok, right now, before I read your post, here are my thoughts. As I started reading November's description of the class scribe I was relieved to see the job of the scribe is a collaborative effort. All kids take notes and the scribes collects, organizes and edits a draft of the notes. I was again relieved to hear the teacher works WITH the scribe to ensure the notes are ready for the class blog. 
When I first read the class scribe I was concerned about the student who felt less than secure in taking notes let alone posting them of the class and the world on the blog…that's pressure! I was also worried about the quality of notes coming from one person. As I read my thinking began to change and I began to see the many benefits of the student as scribe. 

New Perspective ~
The benefits of the student as scribe are many and offer the class a richer opportunity. 
  • All voices are equal in blog post. 
  • Scribe deepens understanding in organizing and compiling notes into a  blog post.
  • Students hear the perspectives of others in the class.
  • Parents, Administrators, and community are more aware of happenings in the class.
  • Students have an authentic audience outside of the classroom.
  • Collections of post allow students an opportunity for reflection on previous learning. 
  • Builds a common language in classroom. 
  • Shows the teacher the level of understanding or misconceptions in lessons. 
  • Students are motivated to show what they know. 
Envisioning ~
Picturing a class scribe in a first grade class room takes some thinking but, reading all the benefits I think it's worth the effort. To make the job of scribe a part of our classroom I see lots of modeling. First jotting notes as a class on chart paper and then reviewing these notes to create a common message to be added to our blog. This message might be in the form of a typed message with picture support, VoiceThread, EduCreations or whatever application best supports the message.  
As kids begin to understand this job  and it's importance the job can be gradually released to the kids. 

Still Wondering ~ 
I am still a bit concerned about the student who needs extra support. Will they feel comfortable enough to take on the job of a scribe? 
How can I build this into what we do, without too much challenge?

I am eager to try this out next year! I want the class blog to belong to the kids, I need to take myself out...


Jill Fisch said...


You have me thinking. I do daily posts on our class blog and in my #cyberpd post today I wrote about having students write guest posts at times. (This is something I used to do but got away from once each student has his or her own blog.) Now, though, you have me wondering if I should take this a step further and have only student voices on the class blog. I have a few questions I will need to mull over before I decide. Maybe it would be a gradual release type of thing with me starting the class blog and over time releasing it to the students. Hmm...

Anonymous said...

I relate to where you ask yourself if we all read the same book. It was inspiring to read so many different perspectives!I am also thinking about class scribes with third graders- we do not often take notes on a class discussion, as so much of our work is inquiry learning, so different kids will be learning different things, but there may be value to joint scribing.

Erika Victor said...

I also had the feeling that we read different books at times, as we all focused on different things, but I love that! I am also thinking about whether/how to use the scribe role with third graders.

Laura Komos said...

Isn't it funny how we all got such different messages from November's book? I think that really speaks to how readers bring their experiences to a book!

I'm with you on the idea of the class blog really belonging to the kids. This was something I thought about in first grade, but I never got to a point where I allowed it to happen. One of my big goals for next year is to hand over responsibility for our class blog to my 4th graders.

Always love hearing your Primary Perspective! :)

Amy Rudd said...

I think the student as scribe can work-the idea suggested by Darren K. is for primary to use more of an "audio scribe" format. I was thinking of you and how you've used Voice Thread-there could be a daily summary of learning posted on the class blog...I think it could work.

Maria said...

I love reading all the different perspectives of the book. I am mixing a little of everything and starting a class blog, modeling, and then the gradual catch and release for student voice.