Just as with our other learning we wanted to be able to share what we knew was going to be four days of amazing experiences with our parents and our community. So we took our Surface RT and Surface 2 tablets to help blog our adventures. Our kids love being connected and for teachers and parents, staying connected with them is critically important.
Each activity group was assigned a tablet to record their activities. During the day groups would take photos and video of the adventures and achievements and each evening a different group of students would gather to write blog posts instead of traditional diary writing. Our students are confident users of technology. Although this platform was new for some of them with a bit of help from teachers and each other they were underway in minutes. During the course of the next day they were asked to teach another member of their activity group so that each day our team of bloggers grew and grew.
The surface tablets ensured easy posting, photos were stored locally and could be easily inserted into a blog post. No need to fuss with camera cables etc. Long battery life meant the tablets lasted all day (almost as long as the kids did!) The smaller form factor meant they could be carried easily to activities and even on the six hour hike!
Our blog was visited several hundred times each day. On two days we had more than 1000 page views! Our parents and other family members left numerous comments which ranged from supportive and encouraging to down-right embarrassing. The kids loved them all. We had a number of international visitors too as family members shared the link with extended families across the globe. Community feedback was overwhelmingly positive. Families loved the glimpse of life at camp and our students loved having an audience.
Engaging with our community in this way has many indirect benefits and provides us with more opportunities. Now that we have captured their interest we plan to engage them further in our learning journals and on-line leaning spaces for what we hope are ongoing productive and powerful partnerships in learning.