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Composing
and
Collaborating
 Using
Google
Docs:

 A
Lesson
Exploring
Cyber
Ethics
in
the
Classroom

Presented by:

Vicki Sherbert 6-7-8 Language Arts Teacher Wakefield Schools 502 3rd St. Wakefield, KS 67487 sherbev@usd379.org 785.461.5620 Written communication skills are a critical component of overall literacy development. Collaboration with peers is a critical component of communication. This presentation will demonstrate the use of Google Docs to facilitate the writing process and encourage collaboration among students as they compose a variety of texts including persuasive articles about the ethical use of technology in school. Participants will create a Google account, compose a document on Google Docs, and collaborate with other participants to revise and share their writing during this session. A presentation of the Flint Hills Writing Project For information, please contact Dr. F. Todd Goodson, Director tgoodson@ksu.edu Kansas State University 349 Bluemont Hall, 1100 Mid-Campus Drive Manhattan, KS 66506


Rationale: Today’s youth practice written communication skills every day. They email, text message, instant message, and blog, and they approach these writing tasks with confidence. As digital natives, most students would score in the Exemplary category if proficiency in these forms of written communication were assessed. However, when asked to compose more formal written texts, our students often approach these writing tasks with dread and apprehension. As we seek to offer students opportunities to utilize their digital literacy skills in the classroom, the issue of cyber ethics is of foremost concern. With reports of cyber bullying featured almost daily in the media, it is imperative that educators help students develop an understanding of ethical use of technology. Wakefield School is a K-12 public school located in a small, rural town in Kansas with an approximate enrollment of 300 students. Our student body includes students whose families have lived in the area for several generations, students whose families have moved to the area because of the nearby military post, as well as students whose families were attracted to the small town setting. Though we are a small, rural school, we are fortunate in that our school district has made technology a priority. Our students have many opportunities to use this technology independently and collaboratively to further their learning in all subject areas. As a Reading and Language Arts teacher of sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students, I strive to encourage a sense of community and collaboration among my students as they engage in the composing process. After utilizing Google Docs to facilitate a book-writing project with a local published author, I sought to utilize this tool to further establish a sense of community and trust as students work together to explore appropriate uses of the technology available to them by investigating the concept of cyber ethics in education. When I began this series of lessons, I knew that I did not want my students to simply summarize a list of ‘rules for using the computers’. I wanted them to embark on a collaborative journey of discovery resulting in an article persuading their classmates to engage in ethical practices when using technology in the classroom. Using Google Docs to facilitate this learning event allowed my students to compile and share ideas, revise and edit collaboratively, and ultimately publish a composition that may be shared with their classmates as well as with a larger audience outside the classroom. Once students became proficient using the Google Docs application, they then had access to a tool that can be utilized for collaborative projects in all subject areas.

Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


Common Core Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects Writing Standards 6-8 1. Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and relevant evidence 2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content. 4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose and audience. 5. With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach. 6. Use technology, including the internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas efficiently as well as to interact and collaborate with others [8]. National Council of Teachers of English Standards 1. Students read a wide range of print and nonprint texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the world; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment. Among these texts are fiction and nonfiction, classic and contemporary works. 3. Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts. They draw on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies, and their understanding of textual features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, context, graphics). 4. Students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes. 5. Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes. 6. Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions (e.g., spelling and punctuation), media techniques, figurative language, and genre to create, critique, and discuss print and nonprint texts. 7. Students conduct research on issues and interests by generating ideas and questions, and by posing problems. They gather, evaluate, and synthesize data from a variety of sources (e.g., print and nonprint texts, artifacts, people) to communicate their discoveries in ways that suit their purpose and audience. 11. Students participate as knowledgeable, reflective, creative, and critical members of a variety of literacy communities.

Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


Kansas Writing Standard and Benchmarks Standard 3: The student writes effectively for a variety of audiences, purposes, and contexts. Benchmarks: 1: The student uses writing as a tool for learning throughout the curriculum. 2: The student uses a writing process that includes preparing, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing to produce a written text 3: The student uses ideas that are well developed, clear, and interesting. 4: The student will use organization that enhances the reader’s understanding. 5: The student uses authentic and appropriate voice. 6: The student uses effective word choice. 7: The student uses clear and fluent sentences. 8: The student uses standard American English conventions. 9: The student uses a variety of modes of writing for different purposes and audiences. National Educational Technology Standards for Students: The Next Generation 1. Creativity and Innovation Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology. Students: a. apply existing knowledge to generate new ideas, products, or processes. b. create original works as a means of personal or group expression. c.. use models and simulations to explore complex systems and issues. d. identify trends and forecast possibilities. 2. Communication and Collaboration Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others. Students: a. interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts or others employing a variety of digital environments and media. b. communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and formats. c. develop cultural understanding and global awareness by engaging with learners of other cultures. d. contribute to project teams to produce original works or solve problems.

Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


Research Bonk, K. & D. Cunningham. (1998). Searching for learner-centered, constructivist, and sociocultural components of collaborative educational learning tools. In C. Bonk & K. King (Eds.) Electronic collaborators: Learner-centered technologies for literacy, apprenticeship, and discourse. (pp. 25-50). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Bonk, C. & K. King. (1998). Computer conferencing and collaborative writing tools: Starting a dialogue about student dialogue. In C. Bonk & K. King (Eds.) Electronic collaborators: Learner-centered technologies for literacy, apprenticeship, and discourse. (pp. 3-23). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Kamil, M. L., Intrator, S. M., & Kim, H. S. (2000). The effects of other technologies on literacy learning. In M. L. Kamil, P. B. Mosenthal, P. D. Pearson, & R. Barr (Eds.) Handbook of reading research, Vol. III, (pp. 771-788). New York, NY: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Karchmer, R. (2008). The journey ahead: Thirteen teachers report how the internet influences literacy and literacy instruction in their K-12 classrooms. In J. Coiro, M. Knobel, C. Lankshear, & D. Leu (Eds.) Handbook of research on new literacies. (pp. 1241-1280). New York, NY: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Resources Bull, G. (2006) “Collaboration in a web 2.0 environment.” Learning and leading with technology. Retrieved July 6, 2008 from http://www.iste.org/…/EducatorResources/YourLearningJourney/Web20/collaboratio n-in-web-20-environment.pdf “Google Docs.” Google for Educators. 9 December 2009 <http://www.google.com/educators/p_docs.html>. “Docs Help.” Google Docs. 9 December 2009 <http://docs.google.com/support/>. “Forms: Creating Forms.” Google Docs. 12 December 2009 http://docs.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=87809 Hunter-Mintz, K. (2008). Using technology in middle grades language arts: Strategies to improve student learning. Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield Education. Moving at the Speed of Creativity http://www.speedofcreativity.org/2007/11/27/thoughts-about-educational-changeinspired-by-videos-and-blog-conversations/ Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


Starr, Lisa. 2000. “Tools for Teaching Cyber Ethics.” Education World. 9 December 2009. Available at <http://www.educationworld.com/a_tech/tech/tech055.shtml>. “The Cyber Citizen Partnership.” 9 December 2009. <http://www.cybercitizenship.org/>. “Using Google Docs in the classroom: As simple as ABC.” 9 December 2009. <http://docs.google.com/View?docid=dcdn7mjg_72nh25vq>. Presentation Objectives By the end of this presentation, participants will be familiar with the use of Google Docs to facilitate the writing process and encourage collaboration among students as they compose a variety of texts including persuasive articles about the ethical use of technology in school. Participants will create a Google account, compose a document on Google Docs, and collaborate with other participants to revise and share their writing during this session. Project Outline for Classroom Implementation The amount of time we devote to this activity fluctuates depending on the size of the class and the students’ familiarity with Google Docs. The following is a time frame that guides my initial planning of this activity for my 49 minute class periods. Day One: • Discuss topic of cyber ethics and explore cyber ethics websites Day Two: • If students have not previously created Google Accounts – o Create Google Accounts and share associated email addresses with teacher o Explore Google services • If Google Accounts have been previously established – o Students share emails associated with accounts with teacher o Establish student groups o Teacher models Google Docs application o Students create practices documents and share within their groups Day Three: • Groups revisit cyber ethics websites and collaboratively record notes and thoughts on a shared Google Doc Days Four and Five: • Groups collaboratively compose persuasive article on the topic of cyber ethics Day Six: • Groups conduct final revisions/edits and publish articles as web pages Day Seven: • Visit web pages of other groups’ articles • Engage in class discussion of articles Day Eight: • Complete reflection survey

Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


Responses to the Demonstration Affective Responses to the Demonstration • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Relevant to the use of technology as a teacher and a student learner. Make the ethics of using technology for the work place and make it career oriented at the higher levels of education even if they were not introduced at an early age. The students were able to collaborate and work together, but they all had usernames so they were accountable It saves resources--don't have to waste paper You don't have to have a lot of technology, one computer for the whole group VERY ORGANIZED Practical tool, teaching while teaching Student Collaboration It was modeled first and then given time to for students to learn Building community within the classroom Shared learning Building background: researching topic, taking notes, writing before discussion Build classroom rapport through discussion Being sympathetic and empathetic towards others Established routines and expectations Consider multiple viewpoints Students engaged in inner and outer circle Accountability during discussion Student ownership and responsibilty Critiquing of others in constructive way

Elements of Best Practices within the Demonstration • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Use in conjunction with novel with constructive viewpoints Use with poem that deals with current event issue Target one Socratic circle or fishbowl each month Experiment with numbers of students in circle and frequency of activity Use as part of cross-curricular unit with teachers from multiple content areas. Organize for writing - providing a meaningful approach to writing Arrange for meaningful-to-students reasons to write - student choice and ownership, authentic writing and publishing Arrange for students to have constructive response to their writing and to offer constructive response to others Provide opportunities for students to collaborate as writers, thinkers, learners. allows students to plan, draft, edit, and revise Students will learn cooperatively The building of computer skills The pratice and use of complex sentences Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


• • •

Writers workshop Teachers watch your "negative" responses 1. Students work in groups instead of independently and have a sense of community and attachment to what they are writing about. 2. The Google Docs/Cyber Ethics exploration was well-organized: students had a schedule of the lesson components, the teacher provided resources for students to use, and the lesson was relevant to a project 3. Google Docs allows students to have a meaningful writing experience as their writing becomes almost a dialogue of their personal opinions based off of read information. Also, it provides a place for publishing, as their posts become a source of information for other readers. This provides accountability; they are held accountable by their writing group and other readers. 4. As a student using the Google Docs format, he or she will have to adapt to a variety of texts not only as a reader but respond as the writer. 5. Having an authentic purpose where the students could have input in developing their own rules for ethics while discovering what the parameters are for using the internet as responsible students. They remained engaged in project and it will be meaningful when they have to apply this lesson in practical situations. 6. Students response in a processed way to the literature follows a writing format regardless if they connected with the teacher, an article, different styles or genres, or just other students. Teachers would focus more on the ideas and concepts versus grammatical errors. 7. Google Docs also allows to students to collaborate in a friendly and "hip" environment. Generally, students are more proficient at texting one another than talking or formally writing. This outlet allows them to do so, increasing their opportunities for critical thinking and serious writing with a fairly rigid set of guidelines, while keeping the discussion in a comfortable setting.

Extensions and Adaptations of the Demonstration • • • • • • • •

Prior to beginning the exploration, it would be important to establish guidelines for collaboration Use a student/group's final project as an extension or additional mini lesson. Students can practice replying to each other through e-mail. Discussion can focus on cultural differences in responses, formal vs informal language, audience, etc. Teachers can adapt this lesson for older students by addressing cyber ethics in the workplace. Use this concept to introduce the genre of persuasive writing for juniors. Begin by having them write a persuasive paper in groups like this, then have them move onto doing one independently. Take a research paper that the students have written, publish as a webpage, then discuss published papers in a Socratic Circle Compare the documents and have students have discussions based on the differences Work this into an "After State Assessments" assignments so we could monitor their work. Use the "forms" to do sort of a T-eval each semester. Use in conjunction with novel with constructive viewpoints Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


• • • •

Use with poem that deals with current event issue Target one Socratic circle or fishbowl each month Experiment with numbers of students in circle and frequency of activity Use as part of cross-curricular unit with teachers from multiple content areas.

Timeline for Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop Presentation 0:00 – 0:05 0:05 – 0:10 0:10 – 0:25 0:25 – 0:30 0:30 – 0:45 0:45 – 0:55 0:55 – 0:60

Introductions and background information Discussion of rationale Overview Cyber Ethics Project Establishing Google accounts Creating a Google Document Invite peers to collaborate Questions, comments, and feedback

If I had 30 more minutes: 0:55 – 01:10 Look at history of revisions tool 1:10 – 1:25 Creating a Google Form 1:25 – 1:30 Questions, comments, and feedback

Vicki Sherbert, FHWP Summer Institute 2010 Teacher Demonstration/Inquiry Workshop


FHWP 2010 Teacher Demo_Sherbert