Today was my first day of school with students. After a lot of planning over the summer and a lot of hard work by our wonderful technology department, we were ready to hit the ground running the first day of school. Even though we were set to hit the ground running there was still a few “housekeeping” things we needed to do before really beginning to take advantage of all BrainHoney has to offer.
The first task was teaching the students how to log into a ChromeBook. This is something that will become second nature to my students quickly, but still something that had to be taught. While logging in a few basics of the ChromeBooks also had to be explained. One of which was ensuring students know how to connect to the Wi-Fi if necessary. Another thing that is being worked on is students having to authenticate with their school login from time to time. Some students went through the entire class without having to authenticate, while others needed to do it every three or four minutes. So even though this did not affect every student, it was still necessary to explain to all students.
After all students had successfully logged into their ChromeBooks the next step was logging into BrainHoney. However, before logging into BrainHoney in order to save time in the future each student “bookmarked” the BrainHoney website and pinned the bookmark to their “bookmark bar.” By pinning the bookmark it will show up every time my students log into a ChromeBook (or Chrome), whether it is in my classroom or elsewhere.
The next step was to have my students log into BrainHoney and change their generic password to a more secure password. In order to make it easier on my students (and myself) I required my students to use their Google password as their BrainHoney password too.
Once all of my students had logged into BrainHoney we completed two simple tasks. The first was posting the phrase “I was able to log in!” in a discussion thread. This is not the most difficult task nor does it demonstrate any real English skill, but it was a way to make sure my students know how to post to a discussion thread in the future.
Two of my classes also were able to move onto the second BrainHoney task which was a technology survey. The survey was essentially a way for me to see how many of my students had Internet access at home and also what technology devices they have experience using.
Tomorrow and the next few days we will be going over my course outline as well as discussing appropriate cyber citizenship and etiquette. With the help of many great people our first day using BrainHoney was a success!