Pairing the station rotation model with Schoology has a profound impact on teaching and learning and benefits students in the following ways: streamlined access to differentiated learning materials, collaboration, descriptive feedback from an authentic audience, reflection, and small group interaction with peers and the teacher. In order for the station rotation model to be successful, students and teachers need a consistent digital workflow to share resources.
The station rotation model is a flexible instructional model that addresses the unique needs of students and is used regularly in the classroom. Students are placed in groups which are flexible and students can be regrouped by topic or unit of study based on data from a pre-test. Students rotate through three or four stations in the instructional block. One of these stations is teacher led where teachers work with students at their level of development and personalize the material to meet the needs of all learners. Technology affords teachers new opportunities to significantly impact learning by using real-time data to impact the learning experience in the moment. Digital tools make it easy for teachers to monitor learning as it is happening and adjust accordingly. Schoology ensures seamless delivery of content and allows teachers to design online instruction that provides students autonomy, choice, creation, and control of the pacing.
Let’s look at an example of how Schoology can be leveraged in a four group station rotation model. It is important to note that one station must be the teacher station.
- Teacher Station: Teachers provide small group instruction. Teachers can leverage apps such as Socrative, Classkick, or Nearpod where both the teacher and student are provided instant feedback and the teacher can monitor and adjust the lesson as needed. The codes to the activities are posted in Schoology and available for students to access anywhere/anytime to review the lesson.
- Creation Station: Students become the teacher and create an artifact to demonstrate mastery of a concept or learning objective. Students can use an app such as Clips, Notability, Explain Everything, Pic Collage, Chatterpix, Keynote or the screen recording feature in iOS 11 to make their learning visible. Students upload the project to Schoology resources and share it as a Schoology discussion board post. All students can see one another’s projects on the Schoology discussion board. Students can use the like feature to indicate which projects helped them review the concept the best.
- Teacher Created Video Station: Teachers create a video lecture using Explain Everything or an app of their choice. Teachers upload the video to Schoology where students access the video lesson. Students access the video from Schoology and control the pacing of the lesson using the pause, rewind, play again cycle as they learn. The video is available on demand in Schoology for students to access for re-teaching any time. A short Schoology assessment can be used for a check for understanding and help students gauge if they need to listen to the video again.
- Collaborative Activity: Teachers provide each groups differentiated collaborative activities via the grading group feature in Schoology. Once groups are set up, teachers assign groups different activities with just a click. This private differentiation Schoology provides gives teachers a way to challenge students at their level. These collaborative activities can be remediation, extension activities, or learning games. The directions for the activity are provided in Schoology and all the hands on materials are located at the station. This station requires collaboration, thus talking, so it is a good idea to put this station across the room from the teacher station so as not to distract from the direct instruction.
In the station rotation model, students are active nearly every minute of the instructional block, have a level of control and independence in the learning experience, use data to guide their learning, collaborate, and engage in reflective practice. Pairing Schoology with the Station Rotation Model of blended learning is an integral component to crafting a personalized learning environment which leads to student agency and increased engagement in the classroom.