Today we performed our normal microscope lab, except we did something a little bit different. Today marked our first test run of using chat as a discussion tool in class. Students were given instruction in our classroom as normal, but when they entered the lab room, they had to depend on my written instruction on Ning. Today we used Ning Chat to aide in our discussion. Students were given lab directions on Ning, and I would also use the chat to start discussions between all the students.
With this being our first test run, I am pleasantly surprised. The thing I was most impressed with was classroom discipline. I was fully excepting classroom disruptions, but students were glued to the screen. Students did not have enough time to be disruptive because I was constantly posting information on the chat. I found this to be an effective tool for directions and Q & A.
Below is a round table discussion that I had with 5 of my homeroom students (recorded on Vocaroo), please take a minute and listen to some of the great input from my students.