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How to read pupils’ Padlets correctly

Aim and Evaluation

While addressing to the schools online program, it is important to point out the aim of the program for you.
Possible aims could be: improving kids’ English, learning geography better, get to know the world, experience IT (Information Technology) learning and so on. According to your answer, you can shape the structure of teaching and evaluating for program.

If you decided your goal is pedagogical, you probably expect certain achievements. Therefore, it would be suitable to correct students gently for mistakes, just like in any other class. Make sure that they really understand why what they wrote is incorrect so they won’t make the same mistake in the future. Don’t be afraid to demand the best from your students- show them you have faith in them and you want them to get the highest result they possibly can.

Yet, we should note that a large part of this program is social, combining interaction with people and self exposure (at the right measures). Therefore, it is important to note also other functions of the students in which you can intervene for his benefit.

Signs of Crisis

A research done at the Hebrew University by Dr. Yaakov Ophir et. al (2017) proved that
kids do seek for help online, seldomly by using negative words and morbid symbols at their speech. Teenagers may think of death or have existential questions, as a part of a mature process of understanding the world. Yet the key is the right measure. As teachers, we are obliged to be highly aware when it might cross the line.

I suggest you to read the Padlet reflectively, and ask yourself what is missing or what rings the alarm for you. In case of suspicion, turn to professional aid such as school counselor; alert the direct teacher of the student if it’s not you. You may talk with the kid about the issue or with his\ her parents.

For example:
A girl from Israel wrote at the end of her vivid introduction: “I don’t really communicate with people because they don’t understand me and my weirdness but I’m mostly a nice person. I’d love to communicate with you if you somehow will understand me and my weirdness. ♥️ “

Despite the
mostly- positive self esteem, this cite shows how the student feels alone and very different, though it might not be the situation in real life. In psychology it’s called “the personal fable”, defined by David Elkind at 1967. It refers to the feeling of the teenager about being a hero at his own very special life roll of events. It might help the teenager build a separate identity, but at its negative side might cause taking risks out of a belief of immunity due to alleged uniqueness.

Other than that, students who have difficulty making this simple profile assignment might be struggling with real issues concerning identity and perhaps instability at home.
Teenagers often have hard time introducing and defining themselves. If you spot a kid that avoids this mission, try to reframe the task for him\ her by distancing the subject from them: instead asking
“describe yourself”, ask them to “ describe a movie\ place\ book\ song you like. Explain, what do you like about it?” This would be an opportunity for them to introduce themselves in a less intimidating way.  

This article does not aim to supplement professional diagnosis or advice, but merely to provide information and raise awareness. For any intervention, consult a professional- educational figure.

Did you find this article useful? Do you have any questions or corrections?

Send an email to roni@metc.org.il

Roni Zedek

Virtual Courses Coordinator, METC