For as long as modern schools have existed, collaboration has been critical to the teaching profession. It has also been a constant struggle to make effective. Finding time for in-person collaboration during the school day is a challenge. In addition, accessing the expertise to address very specific student needs was not always possible on a single school campus. And finally, given the concurrent nature of schools, teachers have to rely primarily on their own observation skills in a chaotic classroom to assess their students.
The emergence of digital platforms, like Twitter, allowed teachers to overcome many of the obstacles they traditionally encountered with peer collaboration:
- Teachers are now able to ask for feedback at any time, from nearly any device, meaning collaboration is more frequent and requires less overhead.
- Online resources and tools can be easily shared and broadcasted to the broader educational community.
While online collaboration has vastly improved teacher collaboration over the old model, there are still some limitations:
- Teachers still rely primarily on their own power of observation to assess and communicate their students’ needs when requesting feedback.
- Communication via social media often lacks the depth of conversation that is needed to tackle some in-class challenges.
Individualized observations bring the best of in-person and online collaboration together, along with added benefits missing from both. An online, video observation where you can see and hear every student makes possible the one thing that is hugely valuable and yet so hard to achieve on a daily basis: to get a second pair of eyes on your students’ engagement in class. Just like other forms of online collaboration, you can gather collective insight through simple chat interfaces so that it can be more frequent and can take place at any time. Online resources can easily be shared, but with a window into the classroom, they can also be tied directly to actual students’ needs.
Bringing student voices and experiences into the conversation through individualized observation is what’s missing from teacher collaboration. We believe Swivl Pro+ is a necessary complement for in-person collaboration or other forms of online interaction.
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Have one of our customer success team members give you a guided tour of how to do Individualized Observations using our new Pro+ offering.