Product News | February 2, 2016

Introducing Recap: A video response and reflection tool

Teachers, Welcome Recap to Your Classroom!

In what is easily one of our most exciting moves as a company, Swivl is thrilled to announce the release of a brand new app for teachers—Recap. And before we forget to mention it, you don’t need a Swivl Robot to make the most of what might just become one of your new favorite teaching tools. At its core, Recap is a video response and reflection app that lets teachers and parents see how students learn. It provides insight into students’ grasp on curriculum and how they’re progressing through the learning process by introducing video as a quick, simple and everyday tool to collect student data. It even gives parents all the details that somehow never quite make it home with students. There’s a lot more to Recap, but if you’re already asking “When can I download it?” then take a few moments to quickly sign up for our private beta. It starts today, and we’re hungry for all the teacher feedback we can get to build the best app possible. Go to the Recap site now to get started > Making video an even more powerful tool for learning. Video is a powerful tool. For years, we’ve talked to educators about how they were or weren’t using video in their classrooms, and how they actually wanted to be using it. We’ve focused exclusively on creating solutions that enhance the efforts of already great educators in order to advance education. When it came to enabling teachers to capture videos of lessons and document instruction, we’ve done pretty well. Our product was well-tuned for the teacher use case. However, when it came to teachers implementing video as a tool for students to document their learning, we felt we could do better. More optimization could have been done to make our solutions even easier, more effective and more efficient when being used by students. So, we did it, and we did it by creating a brand new solution. In June last year, we kicked off a research project for what has since evolved into Recap. Starting with 30 teachers, we conducted our first round of intensive Q&A sessions. “What tools are you using in your classroom, and for what purpose?” “Are you currently using video with students in the classroom, and how?” “How do you keep parents up-to-date on their student’s learning?” We started there, took a step back to review our findings, developed prototypes and collected feedback. We repeated this process until we’d received feedback from hundreds of teachers. As you’ve no doubt guessed, our feedback led us to the use of video as a response and reflection tool. There was a great deal of interest in gathering deeper insight on student comprehension and processing that the most ubiquitous forms of assessment weren’t doing. Even beyond getting students to share and reflect upon what they just learned—there was no doubt this was required—many of the teachers we interviewed needed a tool that allowed students who had yet to develop reading and writing skills, or who struggled with converting thinking to writing, to share their responses. In addition to asking students to summarize the most important concepts from a lesson, teachers can also elicit quick feedback on how well students think they grasped a topic. recap_scrolling_dashboard Expand assessments, encourage reflective practices and empower students with Recap. It’s all short-form response, providing quick, energetic bursts of valuable data for teachers. Recap is built for teachers, students and even parents. Here’s how it works: Teachers create (typed or recorded) and assign prompts or questions to individual students, or the whole class. We’ve also added the ability for teachers to set maximum response times, set due times, and to set a poll that gathers qualitative data. As responses start rolling in, the Daily Review Reel—a selection of student responses set to engaging music and visual effects—is quickly generated for the teacher, along with a snapshot of the entire class’ responses. Teachers can then adjust how subsequent lessons, spend more time on topics and dig into individual data to better enable students learning at different paces. Based on all we’ve learned from the teachers who helped shape Recap, we expect to initially see it being used for:
  • Implementing a more engaging approach to formative assessment—Collect richer, more valuable insight on performance by equipping students to respond in a multimodal format (video). Recap can be used for video exit tickets or admit slips, reading logs, self-reflection and simple Q&A to assess students.
  • Supporting Common Core standards—Get students to explain their answers in verbal form, provide descriptive feedback and demonstrate evidence of thinking on video with Recap.
  • Strengthening language skills—Include the use of Recap at the end of a unit or chapter, where lab and oral responses are already expected of students. A Spanish teacher can quickly test listening comprehension and verbal skills by recording a question in Spanish, prompting students to then respond in kind.
  • Improving the Home-to-School Connection—Share with parents their student’s performance level, thought process and feelings, and then use parents to help personalize instruction. Recap helps solve parent integration, keeping them aligned and up-to-date.
recap_student_responses So, what now? What next? For starters, make sure you sign up for private beta, which is now open. Development will continue through that program and, of course, well beyond public beta. We’re bringing a free app to the market for teachers, and we’re keeping it free. We think we’re a bit unique in that, while we’re introducing new software, we will always be a software and hardware company. Education is a growing market that benefits from companies that focus entirely on education and provide an array of diverse solutions. Recap grants students the opportunity to explain their logic and thought process with their teachers. What’s more, Recap also brings a social and emotional dialogue into the equation. There’s a near-endless list of possibilities when it comes to using Recap, and for that reason we have set very high expectations for Recap and its impact on education. Don’t delay, go to the Recap site now >