Blending the Blended – 9x9x25 Challenge #6

This past week I had a student come to me within issue.  Let’s call her “Jane”.  Jane was not going to be able to make class today and wanted to find out what she was going to miss.  Jane’s a good student and I know it was bothering her she wasn’t going to be able to be in class.  I told her that if she had any problems, she could email me an we could either meet or do an online help session.

I do online help sessions using a variety of different programs.  I have recently started using Zoom. It’s easy to use and since I have a Surface Pro which has a touch screen, I can share my screen and write out the problems in OneNote for students to see while I am explaining them. Jane has attended my online help sessions before, so that gave me an idea.

I asked Jane if she wanted tryout an experiment with me.  Just before class started, I opened a Zoom session (https://zoom.us/) and invited her to login.  I shared my screen with her and taught the class as I would normally.  Jane could hear everything I was saying and was able to follow along with the lesson as I wrote on my laptop.

Normally during an online help session, I would have students post questions to the chat area. In this case, my screen was being shown on the projector.  Since I didn’t want to have Jane’s comments broadcast to the entire class, I needed a different tool for questions.

I use Remind (https://www.remind.com/) to send quick text messages to students.  This has come in very handy when I can’t get access to the LMS and need to get a message out quick. I can easily send a quick note through the Remind App.  It’s a great tool that I have been using for over 5 years.  One of the new things it has added over the years is a chat function that allows students to text their teacher without giving away either’s phone number.

For this lesson, we used the Remind App for questions.  She could ask questions (or answer questions I put to the class), but I could also ask her if things were working well from her side or if she had any questions.

Everything worked well and she was so happy that she was able to follow along in the class while she was at home.

Source: https://www.onlineuniversities.com/blog/2013/01/the-hyflex-learning-model-online-eds-most-customizable-idea-yet/

I got the idea to try this from an article I had read about HyFlex Course Models.  According to an Educause report, “HyFlex is a course design model that presents the components of hybrid learning (which combines face-to-face with online learning) in a flexible course structure that gives students the option of attending sessions in the classroom, participating online, or doing both.” (https://library.educause.edu/~/media/files/library/2010/11/eli7066-pdf.pdf )

In a very rough way, this experiment what is a HyFlex delivery model.

In the past, HyFlex required expensive technology and a special set up in the classroom.

With advances in wireless accessibility, software such as Zoom and Tablet PCs which allow writing on the screen, HyFlex isn’t as expensive a venture as it used to be.

The beauty of HyFlex is that it gives students the ability to choose which model works for them.

For some students, being in the physical classroom is the best way for them to learn.  For others, online, whether it’s in person or watching a video, works just as well.

Given that the lesson can be recorded, students have the opportunity to review the material if they are still confused or just want a refresher.

I’ve spoken to a professor who used this model and their experience was that  1/3 of students come to class, 1/3 students are online and 1/3 watch the video later.  The professor was quite pleased with the HyFlex model.

I believe those that disagree with HyFlex cite that students will just not come to class and some of those students do not have the study skills to do the work at home.

I don’t disagree. Unfortunately, many of those students don’t come to class anyway. At least having a recording gives them an option should they choose to use it.

The following are different types of HyFlex implementations:

I definitely plan to explore this model further.

 

Perseverance – 9x9x25 Post #5

It’s hard to believe that this is post #5 for the 9x9x25 challenge.  We are past the halfway point!

Since writing (and hence blogging) isn’t my strength, I sometimes find it hard to figure out what to write about. This week I had to look around the other 9x9x25 posts for some inspiration.

If you have been reading my other posts, you will know I have been having trouble with one particular class.  In particular, they are very unfocussed.  They would rather sit and wait for me to take up a question, then attempt it on their own (even though I encourage them to work together). Most never do any homework outside of class.  They come unprepared for class (some have come to a test with no calculator!!) and then beg for more time or a second chance.  Some arrive late for class or leave early.

I am constantly searching for a new ideas I can try.  I find myself reading the other 9x9x25 posts (and other blogs) as often as I can for help.

When reading the posts from over the last week I found one that resonated with me.  Specifically, the post by Prof Melanie – “Are you teaching with your signature strengths?“.

Prof Mel talked about how she took the VIA Character Strengths Survey and how she is living out her #1 character strength (creativity).

It made me wonder what my #1 character strength was and if I was living mine out.  I decided to take the survey. (Try it yourself: VIA Character Survey)

After answering all the questions, I found out my top character strength: was Perseverance.

action adventure challenge climb
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According to the VIA, this is defined as “Finishing what one starts; persevering in a course of action in spite of obstacles; ‘getting it out the door’; taking pleasure in completing tasks.” (https://www.viacharacter.org/www/Character-Strengths/Perseverance)

I would definitely say they hit the nail on the head on that one.  This is true for both my personal and professional life.

I could very easily just write my “problem” group off as being not willing to do what it takes to learn the material.

I choose to keep trying to reach them and help them to learn so they can be successful in my class.

I have 7 more weeks to keep trying to reach them.

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For some, it will be too late.

For others, I may get to them in time.

I hope that I get to as many of them as possible and am able to help them succeed.

I will keep persevering!