When Students Take Charge

All students now have FirstClass accounts. Here is a cool student and a cool demonstration of how digital tools can change the learning platform.

Over the weekend some discussions were seemingly lost inside of a Workspace that a student had created for 7th grade History class. Because I was asked to assist, I logged in as Dana and helped her to undelete the discussion posts. These are the quoted messages between myself and her teacher.

This is not Dana, but Mr. Schaefer logged in as Dana so I could fix the discussions. I got them back or as many as I could. I went to View and said Show Deleted Items. Once the posts showed up (they had a trash can next to them) I selected all and then went to File – Undelete which removes the trash can and the fact that all of them were deleted. How did they get deleted, I do not know although anyone in the workspace you made could delete them either on purpose or by accident I assume. This is a case where a discussion forum in Moodle would work a bit better since the discussions would be available to all students and there is no way to delete them as a student. I do love how you have used more of the features in FirstClass and think it was OK to try this out. There is a balance between FirstClass and Moodle here that we are all learning. Obviously FirstClass allows students to manage their learning more then Moodle which is a good thing:)

Are these all of the discussions? Mr. Schaefer

This is the response from her teacher:

Thanks a lot. For extra credit, Dana, put ALL of my students into the discssion in First Class, so ALL of my students should have access to it – not just a few selected people. For the next unit test, I will work on setting up something in Moodle.

Thanks again for retrieving the lost items!


I wrote back:

I noticed that after I wrote that she had indeed put all students in the workspace. I had assumed that she had only a few subscribers. Awesome work on her part and something she took away from Science.

This is the response from her teacher:

Yep. Dana mentioned the science thing and asked if they could do a similar thing with history. I assumed (perhaps incorrectly) that the science stuff was for lab groups. So, I told Dana that I would only want her to do it if ALL of the students could participate. (I thought about Moodle at that moment, but since it was a student’s idea, I went with that…) I thought it was cool that she was learning something in science and applying it to history. So, I threw in some extra credit if she was willing to spearhead the movement and enter all of the students. I have NO IDEA how she did it! The really cool thing is that the students are taking ownership of their learning! Dana is also spearheading the collaboration on quizlet – she is one cool kid!

To which I responded:

I agree totally and can see exactly how it happened as Dana is an awesome student. I would have done just what you did as that is why we have FirstClass for kids. I am very happy and proud of your group and you for letting it flow.

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