In Singapore, one of the key pedagogy being encourage is collaborative learning. Schools want to encourage kids to learn from one another as teaching others is another form of learning. Research on collaborative learning has shown that teaching others is an effective way to strengthen one’s own understanding of the topic and brings greater clarify to the child. That is why schools have been experimenting with different method to enable collaborative learning in the classroom. However, this takes a lot of time and effort on the part of the teachers and hinders the extend which collaborative learning can take place.
Fortunately, technology has been developed to enable collaborative learning to be more effective in classroom settings. Today, we will look at 5 such collaborative learning technologies.
#1: eCompo – A peer tutoring platform for writing composition
One of the most challenging assignments for primary school students is composition writing. For a student to score well, he or she needs a strong foundation of words with a firm gasp on grammar and sentence construction. In addition, the student also needs to internalize the process of forming a narrative. With such a wide spectrum of skills needed, it is best for students to practice composition writing constantly if they want to see improvements in their grades. However, composition marking takes a lot of time and effort, which is why a classroom teacher can only do a certain number of practice compo writing per year.
eCompo tries to resolve this problem by enabling students to mark and comment on each other’s work using an online writing platform. The innovation here is that the rubrics for marking a composition has been organized into an easy to use drop down list that students can simply select and insert into their peers’ composition. With peer marking, students can now practice more without burdening the teacher.
#2: DoodleBoard – A collaborative workspace for pre toddlers
DooodleBoard is an online platform that allows children to to exchange words and ideas using visual resources such as drawings. The focus here is to encourage children to develop their creativity without the constraint of words or language. Other children can add on or comment on the initial drawing by drawings of their own.
#3: Inklewriter – writing stories together
Inklewriter is another twist on the collaborative writing idea. A child will start a story while other children can change the content of that story by creating branches out. The online platform manages the different branches that came out from the main story, which makes it easy for users to follow and contribute.
MyHistro allows kids to create and share a timeline on a Google map. It is great for kids to share their adventures during school trips and other outdoor activities. The timelines created can be exported as a pdf so that you can keep a copy offline. The child can even embed the timeline in your blog if he or she has one.
Padlet is a black online canvas that lets kid drag and drop almost any form of media into it. It is great for collaborating on ideas and allows brainstorming to take place virtually. The finished canvas can be seen online so that it can be shared easily with others or with their teachers.