Success and Failure with Office 365

Well, even though the Teaching and Learning course is over, I have continued to utilise 365 with my students – with a variety of successes and failures.

Successes?

  • easier sharing of files than when we first began – it seems that files are consistently sharing.
  • better organisation of files – students have created a folder titled with the name and shared with my name  – this means I don’t have 100 odd files in my ‘shared folder’ but several folders with shared work.
  • easy editing of leadership speeches – students wrote them and shared them on 365.  I edited, revised and sent students an e-mail of suggestions and positives through 365.  It was quick and easy to manage – all in one area of my computer.
  • we continue to try to use One Note for our e-portfolios with limited success – but they are beginning to shape up, especially as it has allowed students to reflect on work rather than simply paste it into a scrapbook.
  • for the e-portfolios I created a shared spreadsheet for students to mark off work as they completed it.  It has allowed them to successfully monitor their own progress and finally we had a shared document with more than two students at a time in the document!  The kids thought it was hilarious, and it was a lesson in respect and co-operation on a shared document.

Failures?

  • I really wanted to use 365 to enhance Inquiry, but the students didn’t log into their Inquiry notebooks and keep up to date.  Only a few of them maintained their blogs.
  • One Note has this horrible glitch in it which means we have to work in the web app.  This limits what we can do eg. I have their leadership speeches to insert but we can only do that on the full version, however every time I open the full version it gets upset and shuts down.  I termporarily solved the problem but then once all the students were working in the full version of One Note the problem just go worse.  So currently we are completing e-Porfolios on 365 but with only limited functions.  I keep searching all the tech forums for advice, but of course 365 is new and so there’s not much out there on it.

And in the future?  I will be moving from Level 5 to Level 1 in 2014 so at first it seemed doubtful that I would use 365.  However, I have made plans for a way it could be used.  Having a common log in for the students and having files already created for them.  I’ve even started to to think about how I could create digital porfolios with Level 1 students.  So if you are interested you may like to stay posted!

Wendy