I have looked a lot of web tools, but this one really caught my eye. Simple to use and not too much fluff to get distracted by.
The website is: http://typewith.me/
For the last two days my students have been working together to create summaries of our current read aloud, James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl.
Day 1, was an organized disaster. The students were working on a summary, but were frustrated by the real-time editing that was going on by classmates. They didn't like people editing their mistakes and typing when they were. From a teachers point of view, it was fun to watch. It brought out the underlying weakness of each child's ability to work together. A bunch of the kids walked away from the experience saying, please don't have use do that again or I will be sick tomorrow if we have to do that again.
Like a good trouble maker, I had them do it again. First off, I addressed those with a negative attitude and reminded them that their feelings are contagious and don't help the cause. I also assured the whole class that they would get better with practice. They all agreed to work at it again. Today they created this summary.
I was extremely impressed and all the kids were cheering for each other on the great work they had done. Day 1 disaster. Day 2 success.
*This tool requires a web address that is case sensitive. Make sure you capitalize the right letters when sharing the link with your students. Stress the importance of typing your document address in just as it is written.
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