07 February 2012

Day Six: Today's Meet


TodaysMeet (www.todaysmeet.com) is a Web 2.0 tool that allows students to “backchannel” ideas, questions, and comments during classroom lectures and / or class activities. The advantage to TodaysMeet is a real-time, organized, and visually public conversation that can take place on any Internet-connected platform.

Some of the applications for this program can be a virtual Socratic Circle lesson, a “silent” debate, or a “Twitter-like” class activity. This is also a good tool for the students who do like to talk during class...they can be heard using TodaysMeet! Teachers can also use this site as an anticipatory lesson or a formative assessment. Professionally, administrators and teacher leaders could set up a TodaysMeet forum and get instant feedback at meetings, professional development days, and professional learning communities.

Setting up a “meeting place” is quick and easy. Once you enter the website (www.todaysmeet.com) you will be asked to create a room. This unique URL can be active for anywhere between two hours to one year! When the meeting place is created, simply give the URL address to your students and watch the comments post. Students can write back in any teacher-directed criteria, including “text language. ” With only 140 characters to write, students must be concise in their responses.

Backchannel: http://www.todaysmeet.com/help/backchannel

How to use TodaysMeet (Video):

Need a tutorial to get started? Today's Meet Tutorial


Here's an article talking about the pros and cons of Today's Meet and back channeling:

How can a back channel be used in your classroom?
What benefits would there be to students having a conversation about the learning going on in the background while instruction is taking place?
Could this be a method for flushing out misconceptions or confusion before major assessments?

23 comments:

  1. I just discovered TodaysMeet the other day and was trying to think of a way to use it in the classroom. It is similar to having a temporary online chat room, great for quiet discussions or debates. Again, it is similar to the chat feature on google docs, which allows students to discuss their work, ask questions, and get feedback from their teacher. TodaysMeet was extremely easy and quick to use. There is definitely no excuses out there for those who say they are not tech savvy or don't have the time. My only concern is what benefit is there in using TodaysMeet over a blog or googledocs.

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  2. Kristine May-HSSouthFebruary 8, 2012 at 8:10 AM

    This is really cool, but I think I would need to consider my class makeup before using it in a class--some classes could really get a lot out of it, but I could see other groups of students being distracted by having their attention divided in multiple places.

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  3. I used this in my last unit for a discussion on slavery. The students had to respond to two set questions and then had to respond to another classmate's response. The students loved this format and they all remained quiet and engaged in the conversation. Today's Meet is a great way for students to communicate with each other and exchange ideas and use a different format than they are used to.

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  4. I love this tool. It is wonderful because you can choose how long you want the meeting to last. You can also print a transcript of the discussion for further review. This is a great opportunity for students who have great ideas and comments but do not feel comfortable "voicing" them.

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  5. I didn't realize you could print the discussion, that is great because it enables you to refer back to your classroom discussions. Thank you for sharing!

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  6. I discovered my students were using this last year when we were in the computer lab and they were working on group projects, so many of the groups had their own rooms set up (for both academic and social purposes). I never thought to use it as whole class, that's a good idea.

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  7. I've used it when skyping with another school--the one caveat I would add to the discussion is to make sure you have the rooms expire quickly. I wouldn't want students posting questionable material after hours or when I was no longer monitoring the room.

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  8. Having read the description of this resource and the comments posted by teachers who have used it, I can definitely see this as a great application for many things including...
    1. giving students time to think and comment after the bell rings on a class
    2. getting students who are too shy to raise their hands to become actively engaged in classroom discussions (Some of the "quiet" ones often have very interesting things to say, they just seldom get heard!)
    3. actually documenting class participation without needing a video recording of a class session

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    1. I like it for class participation as well, but I can see where it might be difficult to be presenting information at the same time as monitoring responses that roll in. I would guess the best format for it is a discussion circle.

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  9. I have used this tool before. It seems to work well especially for those students who are shy.

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  10. This seems like it could work well in an English class (or any class where students are reading silently). Instead of reading a passage aloud, students could read silently and comment as they're reading. Others can read their comments at the same time, or we can go back and read the whole discussion after. I like what everyone else has said about it being great for students who are shy - they'll probably feel less put on the spot if they just have to type their response instead of raising their hand and giving it orally. I think I'll try this in English elective class for our next discussion, when we have access to computers.

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  11. This sounds great! I like the idea of students putting their thoughts into words. They can use the practice, even if they do write with texting abbreviations. I didn't watch the tutorial yet; I am hoping there is a way to control what they post.

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  12. Hopefully at some point the district will invest in an ipad for every student. Then we will be able to utilize more of these tools while students sit at their desks.

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  13. I think this one is pretty neat. As a way of closure, I had the students give me feedback and provide three new tips for writing a timed persuasive essay. This was a great way to check what students had learned.

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  14. I used this tool last year in Language Arts, and it worked well. Thanks for reminding me. So much to try!!

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  15. I used this in class today and it was really fun! Students were reading an excerpt from a memoir, and instead of reading it out loud they read it silently. After each paragraph they were to leave at least one comment about their thoughts, or respond to a question that I or someone else had posed. Eventually they got kind of distracted by it and I think some of them stopped paying as much attention to the reading as they should have, but EVERY student was participating. And they brought up some really interesting points that might not have come up in regular discussion. I just printed the transcript and we're going to use it in our discussion tomorrow. Very useful tool.

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  16. Glad to hear that you used this! I think it sounds great!

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  17. Using this for a homework assignment tonight! Just checked it and they are well on their way with comments! Each entry is even time stamped! Love the print feature too! Thanks!!

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  18. Used this today as a review. Hysterical! The students were responding to content questions, but they were very silly at the same time. Laughter is good:)

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  19. This looks like a valuable tool. I am going to try it this week.

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  21. My students were very excited about TodaysMeet. It was refreshing to have a homework assignment that didn't involve a ditto! I set the posting for one week, so it is gone now, but I should have made it longer so the students could go back and explore what everyone's comments were. Can't wait to try it again!

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