Sunday, February 20, 2011

Excited Over Gaggle

Our school just recently implemented Gaggle. We used it on a trial basis last year and it truly had a very positive response. There were about five classes involved with the trial. Expanding this to the entire student body has been a task. One of our CTE teachers spearheaded this whole process, and I am so pleased with where her efforts have led and will continue to lead us. In case you don't know, Gaggle provides student email accounts.

Last week I had a student come in before school and ask for help using his Gaggle account. As I began working with him, many other students decided to login and get help. There was such a need for assistance that I decided to offer an impromptu training the following morning before school. The students who participated in this training were so excited that when the bell rang for homeroom there was some definite dissappointment. I offered to continue the training on Monday morning. I anticipate that I will see many of the same students back for Part 2.

Gaggle has also provided us with access to GaggleTube for teachers. We were worried we were not going to keep this feature which allows access to YouTube videos, but it is currently enabled. Now every time a teacher comes to me with a need for specific content that we don't have in our library or on Discover Streaming, I will direct him or her to GaggleTube. Any videos with questionable content can be flagged by a teacher and those videos will be restricted from GaggleTube. I cannot express how excited teachers are to now have access to these resources.

There are so many Gaggle features yet unexplored and I cannot wait to see how we will continue to use it to benefit student learning.

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