Friday, January 27, 2006

Editing up a storm

I took my ninth grade honors class to the computer lab to do editing on their social issue persuasive essay. We set up each computer with their paper in Word but they had to erase their name. then we used the editing features ( insert comment) to each paper they read. To jazz things up a little bit, I had them editing while implementing a little bit of musical chairs. I would have them start at one computer and then after the music stopped they had to move to another computer to begin editing another piece. It was fun and the comments they made to one another's paper were very good and often quite insightful. We did have to set up some expectations of comments and what was acceptable and what was not. I would definitely do this again. In fact we are doing it again today. The only other problem is some had issues with getting their papers to upload(some used Works even though they were told to use word, or others couldn't email their paper here) This would all be solved if they had access to their folders from home, and as a district, students could purchase for a small price Microsoft Office for students. This way all of our students would be guaranteed to have the same technology. I know I am dreaming big here!


Blogger Karl Fisch said...

I agree that having access to their folders from home would be ideal. But they really don't have a lot of excuses for not being able to get their paper here. Both e-mail and USB Flash drives are easy and inexpensive options. As far as having Microsoft Office, there is a Student/Teacher edition for between $120 and $150 that they can buy (in addition to being able to save in Word format from within Works).

I think this is really an education - and expectation - issue. Once we educate them as to what they need to do, they probably can do it.

But I don't think you're dreaming big enough - if they all had laptops, the problem would be solved as well.

8:29 AM  
Blogger Ms. Kakos said...

What a fun idea--I'll have to try this out when my sophomores write their next essay. How did they comment? Were they allowed to delete or insert? This sounds so interesting. But then again, would I expect any less of my Smithy Smith?
P.S. Have you noticed that trying to get into the computer lab this semester is a pain in the buttocks? I think the first available date is in March.

3:54 PM  
Blogger Karl Fisch said...

I forgot earlier, there's also Open Office - free office software they can download that will open, edit, and save Word formatted documents (as well as Excel and PowerPoint).

2:26 PM  

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