SEESAW app in FL classroom review – Communicating student work

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In a nutshell, after a semester using SEESAW (for FREE!!) with my K-4th grade…

I LOVE IT!!

Now let me tell you why…

What I use SEESAW for…

My students can draw pictures, take pictures of their work and capture video with Seesaw. Then they can write a caption or record over a drawing/photo explaining what they have done. Here are some SCREENSHOTS of my students’ work on SEESAW.

 

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What I like about SEESAW…

SUPER EASY TO USE

  • Can be used on computers, tablets, or phones. Can be used in a 1:1 classroom OR 1 tablet in the classroom.
  • Students log in using a QR code OR the more traditional username and password.
Screenshot 2018-06-16 10.48.28
On my account, I have QR codes for each class. NO MORE usernames and passwords for younger students!! (There is an option to use usernames and passwords for older students.)
  • The majority of my Kindergarten students can navigate Seesaw unassisted after 2-3 class times using the app. My 1st-4th grade students were using it unassisted by the end of the first class. Check out the screenshots below.
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This is what the student sees after logging in. On the right, you have every child’s name. At the top is the GREEN ADD button which they can use to add to their “portfolio” OR they can go to activities where you have set up a specific activity for them.

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Menu screen that students use to add to an assignment I have made or to add something to their portfolio.

Parents and Students see what I want them to see.

  • EVERYTHING that is posted by a student must be APPROVED by me. NOTHING goes to a student’s portfolio OR the parents without my APPROVAL.
  • Parents have a SEPARATE APP that allows them to see ONLY their child’s work and receive messages from me.

 

WHY I NEEDED SEESAW…

Communication can solve a lot of problems.

I have found when dealing with an unhappy parent the problem is usually communication. I have seen the teachers and administrator that avoided communicating with parents because there is the idea that if you are too transparent then you open yourself up for “nothing better to do” criticism. (Meaning those people that MUST have an opinion, usually a negative one, about EVERYTHING.) Also, communication is TIME-CONSUMING. Emails, phone calls, sharing work, blogging etc… Our lives are full and the to-do list never ends so sometimes (many times for me) communicating with parents is a low priority.

BUT…

I am so proud of what my students can do in class. So I started researching for a digital portfolio. And I found Seesaw

Sometimes a TEACHER has to be a MARKETER.

I have found that is if I want to get support form my administrators and parents then I can’t be shy about the things going on in my classroom. It can have LOTS of benefits, like when you are asking for PD money to go to a conference or another classroom set of novels. When you need parent participation or a better schedule. I am not saying Seesaw will get you all these things, but using Seesaw to show off your students can be very beneficial in the end.

WHAT IS NEXT?

Next year I am excited to use SEESAW for Kindergarten – 4th grade. I also want to introduce it to the Music and Art teachers because I want them to be able to show off what they are doing in class.

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