I know I posted quite recently about Teacher Planners, but they are such an essential part of being an organised teacher. So far I have tried Teachers Attaché (iPad App) and Learnboost (Web 2.0), but I still wasn't quite happy. I tend to collect apps as I find them, especially when they are on sale, and try them out gradually. To give you an idea of what I mean, here is a snapshot of my Teacher Planner folder with apps I am waiting to try out:
I recently saw Teacher Kit in action on a fellow teachers iPad, and thought it looked promising. I thought it would be a good idea to compare the 3 different type of Teacher Planners I had used so far.
As you can see, Teachers Attaché fulfills most of the criteria, however the lack of customisable grades makes keeping an easy to read record of pupil attainment quite hard. To show you what I mean, here is a view of one of my pupil's homework grades so far this year (as viewed through Learnboost).
I liked that I could set my grade boundaries, so I can easily track the average grade for pupils. We have quite an interesting marking system in my school, which I like so much I use for every piece of work pupils do. Pupils are given an effort grade letter and an attainment grade number. So an E2 means excellent effort and excellent attainment.
However, it is really hard to link lesson plans to classes in Learnboost, and you can't assign student pictures. But the main downside is that Learnboost doesn't get along with Safari (not a serious problem, I just installed a Chrome browser), even worse the wifi in my teaching area is not very good and often disappears. Quite tricky when your planner is entirely web based!
So after half term, I am going to be trying out Teacher Kit. I have already uploaded my main classes, and entered all the homework grades from Learnboost (it was very quick). So I am ready to go.
The layout of Teacher Kit is quite interesting, you have a row of doors for each of your classes.
Behind the door is a range of options. I can take registration, easily arrange my seating plan, mark pupils work and the one thing I particularly like was the ability to record both positive and negative behaviour. Something I'm sure will come in useful in the upcoming parents evening.