A few weeks ago 5th grade reading teacher, Melissa Freeman, asked if her students could have some time in the library reading picture books and informational books related to the Civil War and Civil Rights Movement. I quickly began pulling a big stack of books for them to read. We wanted some way of capturing this experience to refer back to during Social Studies time, so I’m so glad that I discovered Flipgrid!
Each 5th grade class came to the library today. I had the books spread out on tables. We started in the floor for an overview. I shared our purpose of reading books connected with our social studies content. The teacher and I both stressed that our main goal was to spend quality time reading the books and preparing to do a book talk. Flipgrid was going to be our tool to capture these book talks, but Flipgrid was not our focus. We also talked about why Flipgrid was the chosen tool. We brainstormed ideas such as the ability to go back to these book talks during social studies to find books that matched standards. Students also thought that others in the school could visit the grid to learn about some books that they might not check out on their on.
With our purpose established, I showed students an example of what a book talk video might look like. I also quickly walked through the Flipgrid screens to show what each one looked like in order to record a video. This overview took us about 15-20 minutes.
Students each went to the tables, chose their book, and found a cozy spot to read. As students finished their reading, they got index cards and pencils to write down a few notes to help them with their book talks. Finally, they got an iPad, typed in the flipgrid code, and found a quiet spot to record.
- When they held the books up to show them on the video, the words on the books were flipped backward. We did not figure out how to fix this in the recording screens.
- When students submitted their video, sometimes it put the video up to 8 times on the grid. I had to manually go in and delete the extras. We are not sure why this happened to some students and not others.
- Some students received a timeout error message when uploading their videos. They had to repeatedly submit the video until they got the successful upload message.
I typed all of these comments in an email and sent it to Flipgrid support. We hope that we hear some answers to these issues or see Flipgrid continue to improve. Even with the technical problems, the students all hope that their teacher and I will continue to use this tool.
Listen to their book talks here. Students will continue to add videos to grid during their reading class with Mrs. Freeman.