Observation of students’ reactions and behaviors is one of the main tools I use to understand if I need to adjust my instructional strategies to promote better student learning and to gain data that helps me decide how to modify a lesson. When first tasked with delivering asynchronous instruction during the COVID-19 outbreak, I relied on mostly assessment data and student questions to evaluate my lesson plans and communication tactics. I was not receiving real-time feedback from the students who were not likely to reach out to me with questions. By the time I realized I should have adjusted a lesson or restated directions to promote better student learning, most students had already completed the assignment or activity. A few weeks into distance learning, I began posting Google Forms on Schoology to seek feedback about how students were grappling with the tasks and to encourage students during a difficult situation. The Google Forms below demonstrate how I interact with students and seek their feedback as a form of professional development.
One of my favorite things about Google Forms is that I can set them to send students’ responses to a Google Sheets document so I can monitor students’ feedback in real-time. From the “Checking In” Form below, I learned that students were struggling with procrastination and wanted their projects broken into smaller, daily tasks. Alongside the weekly learning plans I sent out to students, I began to post daily tasks on the Schoology calendar and set tasks so that one would not “unlock” until students had completed the previous tasks. I used the “Debate Update” Form to address students’ questions in real-time. I posted the Google Sheets document collecting student questions on Schoology and then answered questions in the column next to the Form responses as they flowed onto the Sheet.