The importance of reflection in the classroom may be overlooked due to many reasons. However, the repetition of triggering neurons during the reflection process is exactly what helps solidify memory in your brain and in the students you’re teaching. Here are two ways to harness the power of reflection with the use of engaging tools.
The Video Reflection
The video reflection can be as extensive as you need. I’ve found that the video reflection needs preparation and planning. Process:
Modeling: You’ll have to create a few reflections to showcase for students.
Parents: Let the parents know what you’re doing in the classroom, and let the kids ask for permission to stay after school for video editing at the end of the week.
Delegate: Delegate the tasks of recording and producing the video reflection.
Expect a learning curve: Students exploring the use of video, editing software, audio, and other tools will be time consuming. Goof around and have fun with the tools. Exploring these tools will be a beneficial learning experience along with the reflection.
Showcase: At the end of each week, unit, or month, showcase the reflections students created.
I’ve found that pre-writing is important for the process of typing for students. Students are able to focus on the creative structure of their writing if they plan first. Many students get super excited about typing, but get sidetracked by tangents and other distractions. A pre-written paper is essential for the efficiency of this technique.
Scaffold and Prewrite: Set apart time for your students to write a reflection. Generally the best time is directly after the lesson. Then give students sentence starters (The most important thing to remember from this lesson is …, I can see this being important for… (what real-life experience))
Blog: Students need time to type and respond to others. I gave students the option to stay after school with parent’s permission because time was limited during the day. Students may take it upon themselves to respond at home, but this will mostly be determined by the availability of internet access to your students outside of school.
Explore these blogging sites I recommend for students because of its ease of use: Posterous, Weebly, Live Journal, Thoughts.
Please share any other ways you may use digital tools for reflection in your classroom by commenting below.