Sunday, February 7, 2016

Dreaming Big! Students Can Remember logins

In a perfect world, Chromebooks could be prepared and rolled out to students on a yearly basis ready on the first day of school. This idea is my dream. Though, perhaps not a realistic dream. As more and more schools begin to purchase devices for their students and intervention platforms to remediate or advance, schools have the need for students to access easily all of their platforms with one sign on. It has been estimated that 25% of class time is wasted simply trying to help students sign on to a platform.

Many companies are promising this service for a fee. Districts have limited funds and often the administration is truly unaware of exactly how difficult this process can be for teachers. As an example, in our ELA classrooms, our students regularly access the following digital platforms

Google-(including Gmail, Blogger, Classroom, and Drive)
@PearsonRealize and Pearson EssayScorer
i-Ready @curriculumassoc

We have also tried @ThinkCerca, @SpiralEducation, and many other platforms this year.

So what is a teacher to do? Some keep a notecard file on their desk with every login for every student. I suggest that we teach the students to be responsible.  Each student should keep a Google folder with all of their logins and passwords. Students can then add to the list as needed.  The Google Doc can contain the link with the name of the platform, along with the username and password. Students can easily share this Google Doc with their parents and teachers. Ideally, the students choose login with Google whenever possible.

I don't long for the days when I only had to worry about pencil and paper. Just as in those days, we need to empower our students to be responsible for their materials. Their current materials just happen to include usernames and passwords.

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