The introduction of class notebooks was the next logical step. Many of our Year 8 students had experience of this tool already, but our Year 7 students needed a slower introduction. We spent some time exploring OneNote. What can this do? Why would we use it? How is this different from other tools we use? We watched videos, discussed what we saw, then tried to make links to what we had in front of us. For some this was easy, for others even navigating sections was confusing. It was important to try a few basic things together to help familarise students.
We tried our hand at current events, moving a template from the content library to our own folders, then completing the task associated with this. Sounds pretty ordinary but there are so many new skills for our students to learn. By the end of the week homework had been completed and submitted via a OneNote homework tab. A little bit of tangible success for teacher and student!
From a teaching perspective I decided to try using OneNote as a digital modelling book. The flexibility of a Surface Pro 3, stylus and a wireless adapter makes this a real possibility! Digital thinking has never been quite this easy. The first thing I noticed was how much time it saved during my preparation sessions. No need to photocopy handouts, just drag them in! In fact I could pop in all the resources we might need and easily plan ahead for the week. We co-constructed success criteria together and instantly everyone had a copy, no need to laboriously record these. More time for the business of learning.
Two weeks in and nothing is pretty yet, nothing is exactly how I want it to be yet, but then learning hardly ever is, is it?