Streamlining and curating information is an easy way to organize our data in today’s technological world. There are advancements using a multitude of tools to ensure the workflow in our classrooms is functional and attainable. With this spirit in mind, I want to share a simple way to use Google Forms during reading conferences. I am a strong believer in the power of conferences. Discussing book selections with students fosters independence, as well as gives us an opportunity to discuss the written word. To be frank, conferencing should be a non-negotiable.
I’ve taken three screenshot for viewing so you can see how my form is organized. This form was created directly from the amazing and inspiring Donalyn Miller conference form. Click here for a link to her slide-share presentations. They are a wealth of information.
I also wanted to share an older form that I used that I may incorporate into my new form. I will monitor and adjust as needed.
You must have a Google account in order to create a form. Once you have a Google account, click drive and the red rectangle in the left column. This will open a new menu. Hover down to more and a new pop up will appear with a choice to choose forms. Much has been written about the how-to with nuances of google forms, so I am not going to cover that.
The next steps are quite simple. During independent reading time, which is a non-negotiable every day in my classroom, I confer with students. On days when I am not conferencing, I am meeting with small, flexible groups formed based on student’s needs from the data collected.
I walk around my classroom with my Chromebook, but this work can be done on a mobile device as well. I ask the questions that were created on my google form. Doing it digitally helps me confer with more students in a shorter amount of time. Once I finish conferencing, I hit submit at the bottom of the form and the data is automatically imported into a google sheet.
The information collected from the conference is invaluable. It can allow teachers to monitor and adjust based on what a child’s needs are. It’s a great time to set reading goals, have short, focused conversations about text in an informal, non threatening environment. The goals the students set in the conference is recorded digitally for my own purposes, but they also have a place in their reader’s notebook to write down their goals for future reference. After all, good readers always have a plan. It also gives us a chance to ensure students are making wise book choices.
Additionally, I plan on creating a google form for writing conferences as well. I will post once I create the new form.
Remember it’s important to have the student talking more during the conferences. Our feedback is important, but their voice should be paramount. That’s an important piece to remember.
I am a passionate teacher in Stamford, CT. I teach fifth grade ELA/Social Studies. I am proud to be an active member of the Twitter educational community. I am an organizer for #EdCampSWCT, a moderator for #ctedu, technology professional develop leader in my district, and a believer in a high tech/high touch blended learning approach to teaching. I was nominated for the Bammy of 2015 Elementary School Teacher of the Year. I was Stamford, CT Teacher of the Year in 2014. I am a certified administrator and presenter. I believe in taking risks and working collaboratively to augment student achievement. I love children’s literature and strive to become better everyday. I am a husband and father. Follow me on Twitter @mrsapia_teach