Mimic your edtech teaching by using it at Open House. At our last Open House I decorated with QR codes and had parents earn digital badges for using their QR readers, taking classroom selfies, and tweeting. A few teachers have asked for more details about this, so here is my personal experience.
1. Decorate with QR Codes
I decorated my classroom with work samples of students, and a QR code for every student in the class that linked back to at least one piece of student work. I also set up stations around the classroom of the various work we have done throughout the school year.
2. Prepare Your Parents
To prepare parents, an email was sent out a few days before explaining that this would be actively using their smart technology in our classroom. I described what digital badges were and gave them instructions to joining our parent badge group. I also prepped students telling them that their parent will have the opportunity to earn extra credit for them at Open House. Their assignment was to help their parent make a Badgelist account and to make sure their parent had a QR reader in their cell phone and the battery was charged and ready for Open House. Some parents came to Open House with a Badgelist account, most parents did not, but they could register for an account at Open House, so I had that base covered as well. Click here for further information about Badgelist.
3. Digital Badges for Parents
I began digital badging using the platform of Badgelist this school year and our school plans to use this platform next year. I felt that the best way to introduce parents to badging is to have them earn badges themselves. The first step in this was creating a parent group:
There were 3 Activities to do/badges to earn. To have an incentive I gave up to 10 points of extra credit for earning badges. The first badge they earned was worth 6 points, each additional badge was worth 2 points each. I chose this point structure to encourage them to at least earn one badge, but they were welcome & encouraged to earn all 3.
In case a a parent didn’t have a smart phone, I had a few computers in the classroom set up to create a Badgelist account and do the selfie activity by using the computer’s built in camera. Volunteer students worked 25 minute shifts to help parents as well. (The volunteers earned a badge for volunteering.)
- Open House Attendee: Parents took selfies/groupies with their student in a place that distinctly says that they are in my classroom.
- Parents Tweeted about their OpenHouse experience
- Parents reflected on the use of QR codes in the class for Open House
There are a lot more tools I could have easily used with my parents from Quiz games to reflections using Socrative and I might choose another method next year. Have you invited parents to use technology in a different way? Please share your ideas!