Week 4 – Video Classes Resume via iLearn

Good afternoon everyone!

I hope you’re all doing well.

Starting tomorrow, we will resume video classes using BigBlueButton on iLearn. I’ve never really tried this before, so it might be a struggle, but we’ll see how it goes! The idea here is that I’ll go over the assignment and take any questions that you have. If you miss the BigBlueButton meeting, there will be another way for you to check-in, but it will require you to fill out a Google Form. More on that later on in the week.

I would like for you all to enroll in iLearn before midnight tonight if possible. I posted the schedule for the meetings as well as the code on each individual Google Classroom, but here it is again:

  • Tomorrow, Monday 5/11:
    • 1st Hour – 1:00-1:40 PM – iLearn enrollment code: kr2py3
    • PREP
    • 3rd Hour – 2:20-3:00 PM – iLearn enrollment code: icp6gy
  • Tuesday 5/12:
    • 4th Hour – 1:00-1:40 PM – iLearn enrollment code: qimrd2
    • 5th Hour – 1:40-2:20 PM – iLearn enrollment code: mbdugc
    • 6th Hour – 2:20-3:00 PM – iLearn enrollment code: e3at9m

I will post reminders tomorrow, but be sure to be ready to join if you can!

This week’s assignment is focusing on a story called “The Open Window.” It’s an older story that takes place in a different time period, so keep that in mind. That affects the language as well as how the characters interact with one another (we certainly don’t typically do letters of introduction when meeting the neighbors!).

Look it over and have any questions in mind for when we get together for our video classes! See you then!

Week 3 Check In Questions Answered

Q: For pages 7 and 8 on the story’s PDF, do we have to answer the questions?

A: No, only answer the questions on the notetaker posted on Google Classroom.

Q: For the summary, do you have to restate the story and its meaning?

A: When you’re summarizing, you’re trying to explain what happens in the story as if you’re trying to communicate that to someone that has not read it. You should not say anything about the meaning — this is where you’re getting into theme, or the message of the story, which is a completely different skill. Summary should ONLY tell us what literally happens in the story.

Q: Am I missing any assignments?

A: Check Student Connect. If you have any missing scores for either Week 1 or Week 2 assignments, then yes, you have missing work. If that is confusing, feel free to reach out to me and ask specific questions, but I am not going to individually check to see if you personally are missing any work since that information is easily accessible to you.

Week 3 — New Assignment Layout, Moving Check-Ins to iLearn

It’s May!

Do you all even understand the Justin Timberlake memes? Have you even listened to “It’s Gonna Be Me” by ‘NSync? These are serious questions. I honestly want to know.

Along with this time of year comes longer days and warmer temperatures — as I’m writing this, it’s only 10:15 AM and it’s already 66 degrees outside. It’s hard not to feel a little happier when that’s the case, although of course it’s unfortunate that we can’t do as much to enjoy the weather with those that we love. But still!

This week, we’re going to be reading “Button, Button,” which is a fascinating little character piece that explores some moral questions that really make you think. I will post the story and the assignment shortly.

The assignment isn’t going to be in chronological order this time. Instead, it’s organized by skill, and I’ll explain more about that in my video that I’ll post tomorrow.

I’m still messing with iLearn, so the check-in for this week will be very similar to last week — I’ll post a video and a Google Form for you to fill out, then I’ll follow up with another post, whether that be another video or a blog post, answering any questions that you have.

Starting next week, my plan is to conduct video call check-ins and office hours on iLearn using the BigBlueButton client, but then we’ll still be turning in work on Google Classroom. I like Google Classroom for giving feedback a lot more than I like iLearn.

I’ve returned some of the work from Week 1 with my feedback and will be continuing to work on those today and possibly tomorrow.

I love and miss you guys. I hope you’re doing okay. Please feel free to reach out if you need anything or if you just want to check in. I love it when I get to talk to you all!

Stay safe!

Week 2 Check-In Questions Answered

Hey guys,

Since I didn’t receive that many questions, I’m just going to go ahead and answer them in this blog post. Feel free to email me with any follow up questions that you have.

Q: Do we have Google Meets still or do we have to do it on iLearn?

A: As of right now, we are no longer able to use Google Meet because of its limited security. So, in place of that, we’ve been advised to either move over to use BigBlueButton through iLearn (because of the video conferences being limited to students enrolled in the class) or to just record video lessons in the future. I’m messing around with iLearn right now and will hopefully have directions for you on how to enroll in the coming days.

Q: Will we stop using Google Classroom completely? Also, will we still receive emails on when assignments are put up?

A: I assume that we will move entirely over to iLearn, but an alternative might be that we simply use iLearn for video check-ins and keep all assignments as well as everything else to Google Classroom. I will let you know for sure on this by Friday.

Q: What are we going to be doing on iLearn with the assignments? Will it be different?

A: The work will still be in the same sort of format that you’ve seen so far. The only thing that MIGHT change is WHERE you turn it in. However, seeing as how I’m not all that familiar with iLearn yet, it might just be that we use that as just a platform for having our video check-ins.

Q: Is it okay to make mistakes on work?

A: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it once more here — it’s okay to make mistakes. We’re not grading you on mastery. We’re grading you on whether you are actively engaging with the class and putting forth your best effort with this distance learning. We will still give you feedback on what you are getting wrong, but that’s just so you know how to do better in the future and doesn’t impact your grade this semester.

If there is anything else specifically that you are confused about, make sure to reach out and ask. However, make sure that your questions are specific — if I don’t know what you need help on, it’s hard to help.

Look out for more info on iLearn/BigBlueButton between now and Friday, and we will hopefully return to the video conferencing check-ins next week!

Week 2 – New Assignment, New Requirements

If you thought that we were going to start having things get into a regular routine this week (like me), then you (and I) were wrong.

Some students in the district decided to make some poor choices that could have some very serious consequences, so now we have to change things yet again.

Google Meet has been suspended because of all of this, so we have to figure out some other means of checking in with you guys this week while we come up with a more concrete long-term plan.  I’ll let you know more on how this will work tomorrow.

In the mean time, please look over your materials for this week’s assignment, which have been posted on Google Classroom.  If you have any questions on anything, you WILL have an opportunity to ask them during whatever check-in process we do this week.

Talk to you soon!

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