When Matthew Phillips, a business instructor from Wake Forest University, learned one morning that his evening class would be canceled, he turned to VoiceThread as a “just-in-time solution” to hold class anyway.
Even though he’d never done it before, he quickly created a VoiceThread, tweeted the link to his students, and then actively participated with them that evening. “Since Wake Forest University has a campus license,” explained Mr. Phillips, “we didn’t really have any problems. Only 1 of my 90 students had trouble, and his problem was fixed in about 40 seconds.”
Mr. Phillips has held three canceled classes with VoiceThread, and he’s found that “students get the experience of a real conversation better than with any other single solution.” The majority of his students say that they prefer using VoiceThread instead of a simple recorded lecture when they can’t be in class. Now that he has some experience, he says he’ll also use VoiceThread for a larger variety of activities, including “flipped classroom” discussions and bonus content for students.
School closures have affected students of all ages, and some districts have already exceeded their allotted snow days for the year. With ever-growing technology initiatives and one-to-one programs, however, not all of those schools lost that class time. Several school districts across the US, including some in Indiana, Minnesota, and New Jersey, have held virtual school days. Read more here. VoiceThread is a perfect fit for those days that you can’t be in class. Students can participate whenever and wherever it’s convenient for them, they can collaborate and ask questions around the material, and since there are no time constraints, you can require participation from each and every student. See an example in the VoiceThread Library.
Winter is not over, and there may be more snow days to come, but you don’t have to lose a full day of instruction. VoiceThread lets you be there even when you’re not!