Small Collaborative Notes Idea

Often times in class there will be a point where the class is having a discussion and there needs to be a record of the ideas and thoughts/conclusions being created.  Typically the teacher will write these on the board and then students will copy them down.  There is a big disruption in the thinking process as the writing occurs.  If we look at technology as a way to make classroom activities more efficient and effective, then there is a simple way that we can fix this.

One way is to pick a small group of students, or have them volunteer, to take notes for the whole class. I would think that in a class of around 25, a good number of note takers would be 3.  Have these three students write down the notes and ideas into a Google Doc that is shared with everyone in the class.  Project the Google Doc onto the board if you want to only have 3 computers open at a time.  This will allow the teacher to keep the flow of the discussion going while also minimizing the chance of students being off-task on the computers.  Having multiple students taking notes means that there are different viewpoints being recorded which can allow for a more complete representation of the discussion.

Eventually you may add more students but I would definitely change up the students who are the recorders.  By having the notes typed into a Google Doc, every student can get a copy of it and can even provide feedback and a conversation could be carried out at a later time in the comments section or even in the document.  There are a lot of options where you could go with this but it starts by using technology to make a common event in a classroom more effective and efficient.  

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