Saturday, 20 June 2015

Using the TeamUp calendar to schedule learning

One of the greatest challenges to effective study and teaching is organising and managing time efficiently. This becomes even more of a challenge if you want to get your students working in a collaborative way and blending their classroom activity with online activities and projects.

This ability to manage work and collaborative interaction is, however, becoming an increasingly important digital literacy skill for the work place and helping students to manage their collaboration can have a significant impact on their potential to be successful.

TeamUp is a really useful and versatile tool for enabling teachers to do this.

TeamUp is basically an online shareable calendar tool but with some unique features. One of the first and most important for teachers is that you don’t have to register and create passwords. This can make it much simpler to use with groups of students, especially younger or older ones who are prone to loosing or forgetting passwords.

Creating a calendar on TeamUp couldn’t be simpler, just go to the site and click on ‘Create a free calendar’.

You can then give the calendar a name and if you want to you can add your email address. Adding your email address is optional, but if you do add it you’ll be able to get notifications and save access details.

The calendar is then created instantly and then you can either use it privately or share the link with students to allow them to edit it.

There are a number of ways we could use this with our students.
  • Each student could have their own calendar that they use to schedule homework and project due dates etc.
  • You could have a group calendar based around a project and students could access and up date it collaboratively as they schedule their contribution to the project.
  • You could use it to get students setting aims and goals by entering things they want to achieve over the coming year/ course. For example they can write in ‘By this date I would like to be able to …” Or “By this date I will have finished …”  Then they will get a reminder to check that they have achieved their goals.
  • You could use it in a similar way to get students revising vocabulary so that when they learn new words they schedule times to revise the words at intervals of a number of days, weeks or months. They just need to add repeats to events when they add them.
  • Students can use the calendar to keep a blog type learning journal after each lesson to record what they learned from the lesson and then look back and review it.
  • You could also ask students to use it for short daily writing tasks so that they have a theme set up for each day and each student has to write a short text about the topic of that day.
  • TeamUp can also be integrated into Facebook , so if you have a Facebook group that you use with students you can add a calendar to it and enable greater functionality to the group.

For more detailed instructions on how to use the calendar have a look at the getting started guide.

You can also try a live demo of some of the calendars here.

I hope you find TeamUp useful and try it with your students.

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Nik Peachey

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