Student Reflection with Google Sheets
Ok- so I actually started this post in February. February!
What had happened was:
My principal came to me last semester with a copy of John Hattie’s Visible Learning into Action and said that it was a book he wanted all of the instructional coaches to have. I thought it was adorable that he thought that I had time to read the book, but I did try and carried it around in my backpack for months.
What I did get to was that self-reported grades have a huge impact on student achievement and so I set about trying to implement some kind of goal based reflection/portfolio/tracking system. I wanted to have students submit samples, so we could see growth over the course of the semester and on which they would reflect and grade themselves and I could get an idea of where they were.
What I did:
I decided to use Google Sheets and Google Classroom because I thought it would be easy to track and while I know there are many sites out there for portfolios I did not want one. more. login or platform.
I created a Google Sheet called Weekly Reflection and shared it in Google Classroom as the only assignment with the “Weekly Reflection” topic label. Students could find it easily in the Stream by clicking on that. Obviously from the title, I had planned that students would do this at the end of each week, but I quickly realized that once a week was too frequent to show any growth, so it ended up being every 2-3 lessons. In the spreadsheet the students chose either Recap or Writing (I told them what they were doing) and then they evaluated themselves based on the rubric on sheet 2. Lastly, they set a goal and made an action step and turned the sheet in through Google Classroom. They did this several times during the semester.
Here’s a short video that shows how it works.
Once they had turned it in I went and read or listened and then evaluated them based on the rubric as well. Sometimes these were way off. The very first time I had several students that gave themselves a 7 or 8 and they were writing “je suis mange.” I don’t know if they didn’t read the rubric or if they felt like they “had” to evaluate themselves high. Either way, after the first time their evaluations were closer.
The Google Sheet also has tabs for the language goals to see where they are and what they might do to advance. Someone shared this somewhere and I don’t know who it was, so if it was you, thank you!
Some things I did:
I gave them these assignments with only 10-15 minutes left in class because I wanted to see what they could actually do and not what they could look up or plan. It was pure sneakiness on my part.
Students had a paper rubric to refer to so they didn’t have to go back and forth between tabs because that gets annoying.
In the column labeled “notes” at the end of the sheet and I responded to their goal setting and writing or listening sample.
This was not given a grade. It was purely for reflection purposes. If students didn’t do it, nothing happened except for they didn’t get the benefit of my feedback and comments.
Goal setting language was not part of the Student Learning Outcomes I was given to use, so I had them do the reflection and goal setting in English.
What went well:
Using conditional formatting to color code the numbers was brilliant because their progression was represented visually with color.
Students asked me questions about their writing.
Students wrote some great goals and ones that I would never have guessed for them. They saw weaknesses where I didn’t.
What didn’t go well:
Sometimes students only wrote 2-3 sentences and it was difficult for me to evaluate. In these cases I wrote that they didn’t write enough for me to evaluate. That didn’t happen when I gave a Recap to do.
Students didn’t always write an action to do to achieve their goal. This is my fault because I didn’t give examples and non-examples. Easily fixed next semester.
I didn’t have a system for them to reflect on their previous goal setting. #nexttime
I didn’t give enough time. Honestly, I wish I could have them do this at home, but I was too afraid that the Translators and the Internet would cause too much interference and not give me a true sample.
A note on the rubric:
I used the rubric our district is using from our trainings on performance based assessments with Kara and Megan from Creative Language Class. Why I didn’t have students evaluate themselves as NL, NM, etc. instead of numbers? I can’t really say. I’m sure at the time I did it, it made complete sense. I’m going to leave it.
The semester isn’t quite over yet, so I will ask students their thoughts about the efficacy of the rubric/reflection in their end of the semester survey.
Click here to see the Weekly Reflection Google Sheets. You’ll have to make a copy in order to see the fancy down arrows that will color code once you choose a number. Note: Number 1 has no color.