Monday, January 26, 2015

In The Beginning...Part 2

Today was an "odd" day.  In other words, today I introduced the 20% Time Project to Periods 3 and 5 (odd days).  Last Friday when I introduced 20% Time to my even periods,  I had students skip the step of adding blog readers during their blog set up.  The reason?  I didn't have all of the students' student Gmail addresses organized by period.  I was going to do this through a Google form the next 20% Time day.  However, I didn't want to wait that long.  So over the weekend I organized all of the student emails by period by putting them on a Google Sheet and creating tabs for each period.  Then I shared the Google Sheet with all of the students.  Today, I had my odd periods perform the step of adding blog readers by copying the student Gmail addresses from their period's list and pasting them into the "Add Blog Readers" box.  I then told them that each of them would have to go into their student Gmails and accept all of the invitations to be blog readers for their peers.  I even demonstrated what to do using a student as an example.  Seems easy.  No I thought.  During the period several students came up to me and told me that they were trying to accept invitations but kept getting a "Blog Invitation Error."  Then another student made the connection that only the Gmail invitations that had a second repeating message created an error message after the invitation was accepted.

I couldn't figure out why.  I had the all of the students double check their student Gmail addresses to make sure they were correct.  They were.  I had students re-copy and paste student Gmail addresses in the "Add Blog Reader" box and still students kept getting an error message when trying to accept student invitations.  Next, I had students delete all Gmail invitations that had a second repeating message and then re-copy and paste student Gmail addresses.  This time there were no second repeating messages and students were able to accept invitations.  I am not sure what the problem was.  Needless to say, we figured out a solution together.

After going through the introduction and the process of setting up blogs, I was short on time to do the thing that I felt was most important in the implementation of 20% Time, which is generating ideas.  Part of me was glad that I ran out of time.  Why you ask?  Because on Saturday, I received +Kevin Brookhouser's book titled "The 20Time Project: How educators can launch Google's formula for future-ready innovation."

I began reading the book immediately and I wasn't disappointed.  It was worth the wait.  The book provided me with insight on how to generate ideas.  I already knew about the "Bad Idea Factory," but didn't know how it was run.  Because of this, I have decided that my next 20% Time day will not be pitch day.  Instead, it will be the day we go through the process of generating ideas, along with showing them some elevator pitches to prepare them for their own pitches.  Not sure how pushing things back one day and losing one conference day will effect the outcome.  However, I felt that in order to get projects off on the "right foot" I needed to make sure that, not only do students have a project, but that they have a project that they are passionate about and willing to research.  When I have finished reading the book, I anticipate making some modifications to my implementation of 20% Time.  

These are just some of the sites that I have searched that have ideas.

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