Saturday, July 30, 2016

"Cheat Sheets" Saving My Voice and My Sanity!

One year I was being observed and the class I had was trying to sign into Schoology, again. I was frustrated because a. I was being observed and b. This was not the first time they had signed into Schoology. And to be honest if I wasn't being observed, I might not have been quite as frustrated. But that's another story...

So, during the post observation my administrator suggested that I create "cheat sheets." I  said, "I keep telling them how to do it, they should get it." And then, I went home and created the "cheat sheet", and I have been doing it ever since.

I make "cheat sheets" because, eventually, whether it's the 2nd time or the 20th time, the student is going to figure out how to get on, log in, post, or whatever it is you want them to do. And when they don't, they won't have to ask you, because they have something to turn to besides you or another student.( I do have "techsperts" in my class, but their purpose is not to help every single time a student has an issue, especially when they are trying to complete work themselves.)

Instead of having to walk over to the students's desk, I would say, "Didn't I give you a cheat sheet for that?" They would look at me, realize I wasn't coming over to take them step by step through the process for the umpteenth time, and find their cheat sheet, (which is should be glued in their notebooks), and do it themselves. If they lose it, they have to borrow one, I do not make more copies.

Eventually, they don't ask me. Eventually, most of them don't need the sheet.

Of course, you can always make a screencast, (video), that can accomplish the same thing, but I prefer paper in a notebook.

Tips for creating a cheat sheet:

  • make sure the directions are clear (I write the directions in steps)
  • add pictures. I used Snagit or Awesome Screenshot (Chrome Extension) to capture images
  • bold or highlight important parts
  • if possible, try to keep it to one page
  • walk through it after you have written it
  • Revise if necessary
"Cheat sheets" have saved my voice and my sanity!

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