At my institution, we work with the Canvas course management software. I really love this CMS and it is by far the best I have ever used. The Wiki pages function is particularly helpful because it allows me to to create information pages based on the unit work we are doing, and it also allows students to edit pages. We have a collaborative class notes page where students can type or upload their notes from a given day and share them with their classmates.
I also like that I can upload PDFs and documents and the students can preview them right in the wiki page, so that they do not have to keep switching back and forth between screens while we are discussing things in class. Currently, I’m working on building a collection of links to help them with drafting and with writing introductions and thesis statements.
Here’s what I’m dealing with right now though. Zoe hates work.
This morning my students and I were discussing strategies for drafting as they moved from the annotated bibliography to their research essay. I demonstrated several ways of approaching drafting digitally, including web services and apps that could help them organize their information.
One of the things I emphasize is that most people use multiple methods of drafting, both digital and text-based. The strategies I discussed included mind-mapping, outlining, journals, task lists, and crowdsourcing. I discussed the ways that drafting is often a multimedia enterprise, and to see their doodles not as distractions, but as their brain organizing information.
I like to demonstrate a lot of different tools and give links to examples of ways I or others have used that tool so that students can make it applicable to their individual process. I myself am a “task master” and like to complete projects in discrete increments, something I share with students. However, I want them to make use of and remix lots of different types of tools–digital and print–that work for them in their writing process.
Then I take questions. 🙂
Many thanks to Shawn Moore, who sat through my class, observed, and took the photographs.