Facebook Groups and Other Updates!

I have been trying out a lot of new things this year, and as you try things out you learn what works and what doesn’t. I thought it would be useful to revisit one of things I trialled last term, especially as it didn’t work very well!

You may remember me posting about setting up a Facebook page for my Yr11s to give information regarding revision etc. I quickly discovered that a ‘page’ didn’t really work, because the pupils hadn’t ‘liked’ the page they didn’t get the notifications. So I decided to look at Facebook’s options again.

I decided to consult an expert (namely a year 10 pupil) who has set up several pages and groups on Facebook. After a chat about various options, it seemed that creating a group would work better.

So at the start of the controlled assessment with my Year 10s, I decided to set up a group on Facebook as a triall to compare it to the ‘page’ I had tried before.

I looked carefully at the setting and privacy options in the group settings:

I set it so that any group member could invite people to the group, but I had to approve all of them. Also only I could post messages to the group, but pupils could comments on postings (I can delete what they post if necessary).

On my teacher Facebook account I have no friends. This proved problematic, as you can only invite friends to groups. So I turned again to my ‘expert’ and he agreed to friend me so that I could add him to the group.

Once he was in the group I could ‘unfriend’ him, but he could now invite other members of the class who were his friends to the group. Within 12 hours all of the class had been invited to the group (I was impressed by how quickly it spread through the pupils).

It has been very interesting seeing how the pupils interact with the group, in the picture above one of the boys is reminding another of the required work for the upcoming deadline. It later transpired that he was replying to a message this boy had sent him earlier, specifically asking what work needed to be done!

Another interesting feature is that I could set up deadlines as events and see which of them had read the post.

We’ve been trialling this for a few weeks. So far it is much better than a ‘page’, but I am still waiting to see how this fares long term.

Another update, I posted a while ago about the end of controlled assessment and I promised to show you some of the finished products. Well the products are now on display, and my amazing technician has been making custom built plinths to show the work off.

So here are some of the products, rotating spice rack, Mondrian themed bedside unit, Rackets press, MP3 Speaker, Saxaphone stand, CD rack and another storage unit (this time Art Deco themed).

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