gotFeedback Prompt Guide

To receive good useable feedback from gotFeedback, you need to create specific prompts. Using the “Seven Keys to Effective Feedback by Grant Wiggins, we have put together advice on how to create effective prompts for gotFeedback to provide the desired feedback you want.

  1. Goal referenced: Your gotFeedback prompts should always be tied to specific learning objectives or goals for your students. This means that you need to identify the learning outcomes you want to achieve from the writing task and the specific skills you want to assess. For example, if you’re teaching persuasive writing, you might want to focus on the students’ ability to create a clear thesis statement and use evidence to support their arguments.
  2. Tangible and transparent: Your prompts should be specific and clear enough that students know exactly what you’re asking them to do. Instead of asking gotFeedback for “general feedback,” consider using prompts that ask for specific feedback on a particular aspect of the writing, such as “Please provide feedback on the organization of the essay.”
  3. Actionable: Your prompts should give students concrete suggestions for how to improve their writing. For example, instead of saying “This paragraph needs work,” provide specific feedback like “Consider adding a topic sentence to introduce the main idea of the paragraph.”
  4. User-friendly: Your prompts should be written in language that is appropriate for your students’ age and skill level. Use simple, clear language and avoid jargon or overly technical terms that might confuse your students.
  5. Timely: Provide feedback promptly, ideally within 24-48 hours of receiving the writing assignment. This will help students remember what they were trying to accomplish and be more receptive to feedback. Using a platform that is student-centered helps immensely. 
  6. Ongoing: Feedback should be an ongoing process throughout the writing process, not just at the end. Consider asking for feedback at various stages of the writing process, such as before drafting, after drafting, and before finalizing the writing.
  7. Consistent: Use consistent prompts and criteria for feedback across all students to ensure fairness and reliability. Consider creating a rubric or checklist to help you and your students stay on track.


We know teachers have a finite amount of time every day. We created gotLearning to allow more engaging and effective collaborations, helping teachers and students capture and communicate about their learning as it is happening.

Knowing that feedback is at the heart of learning, we are ensuring our technology tools support a teacher’s ability to provide timely, effective and personalized feedback. We are proud to introduce gotFeedback, the first classroom teacher’s feedback tool built on OpenAI’s Large Language Model API. 

Introducing gotFeedback, Your New Personal Feedback Resource

gotFeedback is modeled on the research that feedback needs to be:

  • Goal-referenced
  • Tangible and Transparent
  • Actionable
  • User-Friendly
  • Timely
  • Ongoing
  • Consistent

gotFeedback‘s goal is to help teachers provide more individualized feedback to their students in a timely way. After our March 2023 beta period we will be moving our gotFeedback tool into gotLearning‘s Collaborative Learning System to seamlessly integrate this technology into our feedback structure. This will allow teachers to use AI where they deem appropriate, quickly and easily request feedback and actionable next steps for themselves and their students. All of this will be at the individual student level.

Moderated AI Feedback

We are being thoughtful in how we roll out AI in our platform with our first iteration being controlled by the teachers. We believe that the best path at the moment is to have the teacher moderate the AI feedback that is provided. The teacher can use gotFeedback as a resource, choosing which elements are appropriate feedback to share with students. We believe that AI-based feedback has real-world implications in education and that is why we are embedding this technology into our platform.  

While the technology is changing rapidly, we do not believe that today’s Large Language Models (LLMs) are ready to provide feedback directly to students at this time. Many articles illustrate that LLMs can be wildly incorrect and sometimes harmful (see Will ChatGPT Supplant Us as Writers, Thinkers in the Harvard Gazette.)

Join us in trying gotFeedback. We hope you find that it can be helpful in speeding up the feedback process.

Capturing Learning as it Happens

This article was originally posted on Teachers Going Gradeless

As educators we all know how complex teaching and learning is and the many stages that happen through a typical learning cycle. We also know that at key intervals throughout the year, schools layer in formal recording and reporting structures to capture and communicate about student learning at that time. Portfolios and conferences are popular ways to report about student learning and growth. Those of you who are reading this are likely thinking about or are going gradeless in your reporting. We are going to further explore portfolios and conferences as tools for capturing learning evidence and showing growth over time. 

Portfolios are most often thought of as a collection of learning evidence that demonstrates students’ knowledge, skills, and understanding. And conferences are most often thought about as the parent-teacher-student conversations at the end of a quarter or semester. I believe that curating evidence of learning over time and partnering with the student in conferencing throughout the learning process are integral to creating a dynamic learning environment.

All of a student’s learning does not occur in the direct view of the teacher. There are a myriad of things students do as they are engaging in new learning. Students interpret new ideas, ask clarifying questions, partake in trial and error, create rough drafts, receive feedback, receive scaffolds as necessary, make revisions, engage in more trial, receive more feedback, etc. These kinds of activities continue throughout the learning cycle supporting students along the way. Usually, it is the teacher who wraps up the learning cycle and for students it results in some level of learning mastery and some artifacts that can be added to a portfolio. 

When done well, portfolios are individualized museums of student learning. These are a great way to show learning growth and when possible allow you to compare where the student started and where they ended. One challenge is that the process of curating artifacts to go into a portfolio usually occurs after the evidence has been completed and toward the end of the learning cycle. There are so many important pieces of formative learning data that are missed when the curation happens at the end.

Students and teachers should consider capturing and curating learning evidence throughout the learning cycle and as the learning is occurring. This allows both the teacher and student to use a triangulated assessment approach which includes performance observations, conversations, and physical products as learning evidence (Damien Cooper, Rebooting Assessment). This triangulated assessment approach allows teachers and students to paint a more nuanced picture of the student and their learning over time.

In the back-and-forth interactions between students and teachers that occur every day lies much of this learning evidence. This includes physical evidence, online documents/presentation, emails, texts, conversations, as well as peer and teacher feedback—to name a few. Capturing all of this formative assessment data is staggering in volume and incredibly hard to manage for both teachers and students. The average classroom size (Elementary, Middle, and High School in the U.S.) is around 24 students (NCES 2020). Multiply 24 by the typical teaching load of 5 classes and you have 120 students for whom to capture learning data. Not an easy task.

We know we can’t expect teachers to read and respond to each piece of qualitative learning evidence their students produce. It is just not humanly possible nor sustainable at a high level. We also know this is really important learning evidence. We must work smarter and not harder. If we leverage technology designed to co-create, capture and curate the learning as it is occurring, this daunting task not only becomes possible, but essential. The trick is that both students and teachers need to be involved to ensure the capturing and curation is a collaborative and communicative experience. Neither student nor the teacher should bear sole responsibility for the curation of learning evidence over time. Co-creation of learning is what technology allows us to easily accomplish. 

When teachers and students are capturing learning evidence along the way, they both have a much easier time showing growth. Thus, creating and maintaining portfolio evidence as the learning is happening results in richer, more nuanced representations of learning over time. When students and teachers capture learning as it happens—it is no longer an add-on reporting method after a performance task is completed. 

Educator benefits of capturing and curating learning portfolios throughout the learning process (as the student is learning) are:

  • Easily showing growth over time

  • Seeing trends in student learning across multiple students allowing for timely adjustments

  • Aiding collaboration with the full team of educators (special education, instructional coaches, and school administrators) when they can view the qualitative learning evidence of individual students in a way they could never do so before

  • Capturing learning as it happens allows for more diagnostic formative assessment. From this teachers can better meet the individual needs of each learner. The teacher can determine where students are in the learning and provide the feedback or the scaffolding to help them move forward

Student benefits of capturing and curating learning evidence throughout the learning process (not just at the end) are:

  • Engaging more fully in all parts of their learning 

  • Allowing student ownership of their learning supporting the development of student agency

  • Including reflections of what/how students learned as well as what they did to accomplish their learning

  • Including artifacts of important performance observations and reflections, teacher/peer conversations as well as physical products

Conferences are another very important part of communicating student learning and growth. When conferences are limited to the parent-teacher-student conference at specific points throughout the school year they serve the purpose of reporting. If we consider conversations we have daily with our students as conferencing (often called conferring) we have another rich data source to add to our portfolios. This process of conferring—the one-on-one conversations with each of your students throughout the week—will become one of the most powerful learning opportunities for both you and your students.

I learned firsthand the power of conferring by observing master teachers Carl Anderson, Penny Kittle, and Kelly Gallagher confer one-on-one with my students with incredible efficiency and effectiveness. I watched them masterfully partner with our students in these conferring sessions to understand where they were in their learning, to celebrate growth and to set goals for their next steps. And, the best part of this kind of conferring is that the students become the owners of their goals and next steps. 

The qualitative data that is generated daily by students is the most powerful learning evidence to tell the story of learning over time. Expanding how we are developing our portfolios and how we conference with students to more deliberately include this important qualitative evidence will strengthen the stories we ask our students to curate about their learning journey. 

Mike Rutherford is the founder and CEO of gotLearning. He lives in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. He has been a teacher, instructional technology coach, school district EdTech director, founder of the K12 group at Blackboard, Vice President of Business Development at Just ASK Publications & Professional Development, all before returning to the classroom as a 6th grade humanities teacher at International School Bangkok in Thailand where he built version 1 of gotLearning in his classroom. You can follow Mike and gotLearning at @mikerford and @growthovertime on Twitter.

Permission is granted for reprinting and distribution of this blog post for non-commercial use only. Please include the following citation on all copies:
Rutherford, Mike. “Capturing Learning as it Happens.” Teachers Going Gradeless. Reproduced with permission of Teachers Going Gradeless. All rights reserved. Available at

gotLearning and the Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

Colleen Dawson 
B.A., B.ED., PBDE.

Winnipeg School Division, Winnipeg, Canada

UDL is a framework for designing learning environments that are accessible, engaging, and effective for all learners, regardless of their abilities or needs. gotLearning‘s platform supports UDL by providing teachers with a range of tools and resources that allow them to capture, analyze, and interpret data and evidence about student learning. These tools and resources can be used to support the implementation of UDL principles in the classroom. gotLearning aligns with the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) in several ways. Some explicit and concrete examples include:
  • Multiple means of representation: gotLearning‘s platform allows teachers to provide students with multiple means of representation, such as visual, auditory, and written forms of feedback. This allows students with different learning styles and abilities to access and understand the feedback provided.
  • Multiple means of expression: gotLearning‘s platform allows teachers to provide students with multiple means of expression, such as allowing them to choose the format or mode in which they respond to feedback or demonstrate their learning. This allows students to engage in the learning process in a way that is most meaningful and effective for them.
  • Multiple means of engagement: gotLearning‘s platform allows teachers to provide students with multiple means of engagement, such as offering choices in the learning tasks or activities they complete. This allows students to actively participate in their own learning and to feel motivated and engaged in the process.
  • Personalized learning plans: gotLearning‘s platform allows teachers to develop personalized learning plans for each student based on the data and evidence collected about their learning. This can involve providing students with choices in how to demonstrate their learning and collaborating with other teachers and educational specialists to support the learning of all students.
To further explain to teachers how gotLearning aligns with the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), you could highlight the following points:
  • gotLearning‘s platform provides teachers with a range of tools and resources that allow them to capture, analyze, and interpret data and evidence about student learning. This can help teachers better understand the needs and expectations of each student and adjust their teaching strategies accordingly.
  • gotLearning‘s platform supports the implementation of UDL principles in the classroom by providing teachers with multiple means of representation, expression, and engagement. This allows students with different learning needs and abilities to access and understand the feedback provided, to engage in the learning process in a way that is most meaningful and effective for them, and to actively participate in their own learning.
  • gotLearning‘s platform promotes collaboration and support among teachers by providing them with a platform to share best practices and strategies that incorporate UDL principles. This can help teachers work together to create more inclusive and equitable learning environments that meet the needs of all students.

To incorporate Universal Design for Learning (UDL) into gotLearning, teachers can:

  1. Capture data and evidence about each student’s learning using a variety of methods that are accessible to all students. For example, teachers can use gotLearning‘s platform to provide students with multiple means of representation, such as visual, auditory, and written forms of feedback. This allows students with different learning styles and abilities to access and understand the feedback provided.
  1. Analyze the data and evidence collected using UDL principles to ensure that all students are included and supported in the learning process. For example, teachers can use gotLearning‘s platform to provide students with **multiple means of expression**, such as allowing them to choose the format or mode in which they respond to feedback or demonstrate their learning. This allows students to engage in the learning process in a way that is most meaningful and effective for them.
  1. Interpret the data and evidence using UDL principles to develop personalized learning plans for each student. For example, teachers can use gotLearning‘s platform to provide students with **multiple means of engagement**, such as offering choices in the learning tasks or activities they complete. This allows students to actively participate in their own learning and to feel motivated and engaged in the process.
  1. Provide students with choices in how to demonstrate their learning using UDL principles to ensure that all students have access to the same opportunities. For example, teachers can use gotLearning‘s platform to provide students with **multiple means of representation,** such as allowing them to choose the format or mode in which they present their learning. This allows students to demonstrate their learning in a way that is most meaningful and effective for them.
  1. Collaborate with other teachers and educational specialists using UDL principles to ensure that all students are included and supported in the learning process. For example, teachers can use gotLearning‘s platform to share best practices and strategies that incorporate UDL principles, and to receive feedback and guidance from other educators on how to effectively implement UDL in their classrooms. This allows teachers to work together to support the learning of all students, regardless of their individual abilities and needs.


Almarode, J., Fisher, D., & Frey, N. (2022). How learning works: A playbook. Corwin/Fisher & Frey.

Almarode, J., Fisher, D., Thunder, K., Frey, N., & Hansen, T. (2021).
The success criteria playbook: A hands-on guide to making learning visible and measurable: Grades K-12. Corwin.

Eysink, T. H., & Schildkamp, K. (2021). A conceptual framework for assessment-informed differentiation (aid) in the classroom. Educational Research, 63(3), 261–278.

Fullan, M., & Quinn, J. (2016). Coherence: The right drivers in action for schools, districts, and systems. Ontario Principals’ Council.

Fullan, M., Quinn, J., & McEachen, J. (2018). Deep learning: Engage the world change the world. Corwin.

Fulton, M. L., & Vasquez, A. M. (2022). Perspectives, Strategies, and Propositions for Cultivating Inclusive Educational Environments: Teaching for Neurodiversity and Creative Learning. In Handbook of Research on challenging deficit thinking for exceptional (pp. 144–178). essay, BUSINESS SCIENCE REFERENCE.

Hattie, J., Bustamante, V., Almarode, J., Fisher, D., & Frey, N. (2021). Great teaching by design. Corwin Press .

Illeris, K. (2017). How we learn: Learning and non-learning in school and beyond. Routledge.

Illeris, K., & Illeris, K. (2018). A Comprehensive understanding of human learning. In Contemporary theories of learning: Learning theorists … in their own words (pp. 3–14). essay, Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group.
L., D. S. M. 1944-; K. W. R. J. (2014). Interweaving curriculum and classroom assessment: Engaging the 21st-century learner. Oxford University Press.

M.Ed., P. L. (n.d.). Ch. 12 differentiated instruction. Instructional Methods Strategies and Technologies to Meet the Needs of All Learners. Retrieved December 4, 2022, from

Tomlinson, C. A., Brighton, C., Hertberg, H., Callahan, C. M., Moon, T. R., Brimijoin, K., Conover, L. A., & Reynolds, T. (2003). Differentiating instruction in response to student readiness, interest, and learning profile in academically diverse classrooms: A review of literature. Journal for the Education of the Gifted, 27(2-3), 119–145.

The UDL guidelines. UDL. (2022, September 2). Retrieved December 4, 2022, from

Vásquez-Rosati, A., Montefusco-Siegmund, R., López, V., & Cosmelli, D. (2019). Emotional influences on cognitive flexibility depend on individual differences: A combined micro-phenomenological and psychophysiological study. Frontiers in Psychology, 10. 

Permission is granted for reprinting and distribution of this blog post for non-commercial use only. Please include the following citation on all copies:
Dawson, Colleen. “UDL and gotLearning.” gotLearning. Reproduced with permission of Growth Over Time Learning (gotLearning). © 2023 gotlearning. All rights reserved. Available at

Formative Assessment FAQ

During the years that I have been writing, assessment has been the focus multiple times. One component of my assessment repertoire that continues to be elusive for many is formative assessment. Questions that frequently surface are addressed in this issue. Those questions include:


    • What specifically is formative assessment?
    • How does formative assessment differ from summative assessment?
    • What does the research tell us about formative assessments?
    • How should we apply these research findings to their instructional practice?
    • Should formative assessments be included in a student’s report card grade?
    • How often should formative assessments be used?
    • How should we go about using formative assessments to gather achievement data and what are some strategies we can use?


What specifically is formative assessment?
Formative assessment, as defined by the Council of Chief School Officers, is a “process used by teachers and students during instruction that provides feedback to adjust ongoing teaching and learning, to improve students’ achievement on intended instructional outcomes.” Putting it succinctly, formative assessments provide information, often informal, for both teacher and students about how learning is progressing; concurrently, it informs the teacher about whether or not instruction is working and if true learning is being formed.


How does formative assessment differ from summative assessment?
Formative assessments give teachers the opportunity to provide feedback to students so they can use this data to make corrections or adjustments in their work. Formative assessments let teachers and students know how learning is progressing; summative assessments, on the other hand, are periodically administered to students to determine what knowledge they have learned or what skills students have mastered. Dr. James Popham, a UCLA professor and a huge proponent of the proper use of formative assessment, has said, “Whereas formative assessment intends to improve ongoing assessment, summative assessment tries to answer the question, ‘Was instruction effective?’” Rick Stiggins, President of Assessment Training Institute, Inc., distinguishes between assessments for learning (formative assessment) versus assessment of learning (summative assessment). Stiggins notes that both assessment practices are essential but many educators still do not use formative assessment data properly. Any assessment can be either formative or summative. The category into which an assessment falls is determined by how the information gleaned from the assessment is used.


What does research tell us about formative assessments?
In 1998, British researchers Paul Black and Dylan William published an extensive review of classroom assessment practices and concluded that when properly applied, formative assessment had a significant impact on student learning. In their meta-analysis, they found that gains in learning through the use of formative assessments are “among the largest ever reported for educational interventions.” As the work of Black and William received increased public attention, dialogue in schools also increased as educators contemplated how their current practice compared to the research findings.


How should we apply these research findings to our instructional practice?
There are many justifications for changing one’s thinking about how we assess our student’s progress. Currently, in many grade books, there is a hodgepodge of marks including grades for homework, behavior, participation, attendance, pop quizzes, tardies, and group work. Mixed in with these marks are grades for tests, projects, performance tasks, presentations, essays, book reports, and self-assessments. When determining a report card grade, some teachers combine all of these measures (often weighting different data sources and then averaging everything together) and come up with a letter grade. Unless there are faculty discussions about assessment practices that lead to some uniformity in how schools determine and report student achievement, each staff member can have his own personal and unique system for determining exactly what a specific grade signifies. Hence, grades on report cards vary from teacher to teacher and tell us nothing about what students have actually learned.


Should formative assessments be included in a students’ report card grade?
Current work in the field of assessment provides much greater insight into how we should monitor and report student achievement. Many educational researchers and writers have concluded that a student’s grade should be based on the student’s demonstration of mastery of the learning standards. More precisely, performance on summative assessments should determine a final quarter or annual grade. Formative assessments should be thought of as steps in the learning process; this formative data should be used to provide feedback to students, allow students to adjust their learning strategies, and inform teachers as to how they can adjust instruction to improve learning. It is much like when an athlete or musician learns a new technique; they do not use it instantly in a performance or competition. Instead, the teacher or coach observes the students using the new technique and provides suggestions for improvement until the athlete or musician demonstrates improvement and competence in their quest for mastery. In the same vein, our students should complete self-assessments on work in progress comparing their current proficiency level with a published rubric or a clearly delineated standard. Using the gathered data, the student can identify areas of strength, target areas for improvement, and make an action plan. Practices such as giving a pop quiz or assigning a brief writing assignment, collecting and grading papers and returning the work with a single letter grade on top should be eliminated completely. Using formative assessment data to provide opportunities for growth makes so much more sense if student improvement and learning is the ultimate goal.


How often should formative assessments be used?
From the time students walk in the door, formative assessment is available. Every comment, look, and move provides data about the learners and their learning. Wise teachers are continuously gathering and using that data. Additionally, these wise teachers are purposeful in orchestrating tasks and interactions on a regular ongoing basis that let them know if instruction is working. As University of Virginia Professor Carol Ann Tomlinson has written, “We need to understand where our students are at any point during a unit; in other words, what each student knows, understands, and can do at a given time based on the content goals we’ve established.” Finding out where each student stands in relation to the identified standards can be determined in a variety of ways that do not have to be complex or time consuming.


How should we go about using formative assessments to gather achievement data and what are some strategies/techniques they can use?

As stated above, any interaction between teacher and student can be considered a formative assessment. These interactions may be oral or in writing, can be formal or informal, and can provide data about a student’s progress toward achieving mastery of identified standards. There are dozens of formative assessment strategies. A few possibilities are:


  • Ticket to Enter: As students enter the classroom, they are asked to complete a quick response to a question or writing prompt to activate their current thinking on a topic
  • Ticket to Leave: Students respond in writing to questions or prompts to show what they have learned and submit the slip to the teacher as they leave the class
  • Journaling/Learning Log/Quick Write: Students record their reactions to new learning in a variety of ways
  • Self-assessment: Students complete personal assessments indicating where they see themselves with a work in progress
  • Two Stars and a Wish: Students provide feedback to a peer by pointing out two positive aspects of the peer’s work followed by one suggestion to help improve their work in the future
  • 3-2-1: Students record their summarizing responses at the end of a lesson; for example, the students write about 3 new things they learned, 2 questions they still have, and 1 way they connected their new learning to what they already knew
  • One Word Summary: Students choose one word that summarizes the concept or topic they have studied in class followed by 2-3 sentences that explain why they chose the word
  • Graphic Organizers: Students complete a visual representation of their learning
  • Sentence stem: Students begin a paragraph summary with a sentence stem provided by the teacher such as “The important thing about…”  The students then include details to support the conclusion they reached
  • Whiteboards: Students write answers/responses on small handheld whiteboards and display them for teacher and classmates to see
  • Sticks: The teacher places a craft stick with the name of a student on each one in a container, draws out one stick at a time and asks the designated student a question
  • Clipboard Cruising: The teacher moves around the room as students are working individually or in groups and jots down observations about how students are progressing toward mastering an objective
  • 10:2 Theory (Rowe): After ten minutes of instruction, the teacher provides two minutes of time for students to pause and process what they have learned during large group instruction; the teacher observes/listens in on student conversations


It is important to note that none of these assessments are graded; they simply provide important data as learning is taking place. When teachers use formative assessments to appropriately analyze students’ day-to-day performance and the effectiveness of the instructional program, the results on summative assessments should be predictable.  No one should be surprised. Education Week blogger David Ginsburg says it well when he writes, “Formative assessment efficiency on the part of teachers is the key to summative assessment proficiency on the part of students.”

Permission is granted for reprinting and distribution of this blog post for non-commercial use only. Please include the following citation on all copies:

Oliver, Bruce. “Formative Assessment FAQ” gotLearning. Reproduced with permission of Growth Over Time Learning (gotLearning). © 2023 gotlearning. All rights reserved. Available at

November 2022 Update

  • Family View is Now Available
  • Google Classroom and Google EduSuite Enhancements

Family View

Now all stakeholders in a student’s life can participate/view their learning as it is happening. Students and teachers can invite multiple family members to view conversations and assignments that have been selected to be viewed by family members.

Google Classroom and Google for Education Enhancements

Thanks to the feedback from many teachers using gotLearning, we have made the sharing of Google Docs, Sheets and Slides much easier.

Importing Google Classroom classes and rosters now allows for classes over 50 students.

October 2022 Update

  • Assignments have been updated
  • Google Drive integration has been streamlined
  • ProTeachers can add a school administrator to their classrooms
  • Professional Conversations are now available to ProTeachers when they add an administrator

gotLearning Assignment Updates

The first major update in assignments is the ability to add students to existing assignments. If you have a student add to the class or if you use one assignment over a long period of time, you can now easily add a student after it was created.

The second major update to assignments is the ability to “Close” an assignment. This feature allows for a teacher to no longer allow additions to the assignment. This was requested by teachers who are using “Turn In” the assignment not as an end point, but a check point and as a request for feedback.

ProTeachers Can Add Administrators to their Classrooms

ProTeachers (the free version of gotLearning) can add their school administrator to their classrooms for free! Now teachers can share the incredible learning conversations (with growth producing feedback) they are having with their students. The administrator can even participate in your classes!

Just a quick FYI – soon you will be able to add two other teachers to your team for free (with your administrator). You will be able to share students, see what students are learning in the other teachers classes and participate in Professional Conversations.

Professional Conversations Available When Adding an Administrator

ProTeachers (free version of gotLearning), when adding an administrator to their classes, open up Professional Conversations. These are gotLearning Learning Conversations but only available to teachers and administrators that have been invited into that conversation.


It’s a Feedback World

As an admitted digital immigrant for whom modern technology does not come naturally, I have occasionally been slow to adapt to new tools. However, when I purchased a GPS (Global Positioning System) navigation device for my car, I read a lot of literature about the system and spoke with friends who talked about how helpful it was when they traveled. Once the device was in hand, I read the manual; I discovered that even for a digital immigrant it was relatively easy to follow. Soon it was placed on the dashboard of my car and provided clear visual and auditory directions to help me find my destination. The longer I used the GPS, the more comfortable I became with it, and the more I realized how helpful it was. On a recent trip, I listened to the voice explain how I could get to my designated address. As I waited at a stoplight, I realized that the GPS provided excellent feedback, made my trip more enjoyable, increased my confidence in using it, and made me feel more technologically savvy. The more I thought about the GPS device, the more I realized that its operation is a valid metaphor for how teachers should provide feedback to students in the learning process. I came to the conclusion that GPS (Global Positioning System) and GPF (Growth-Producing Feedback) have a lot in common. I started jotting down ways that they were similar and devised the comparison chart you see below:
1. Lays out the entire trip from start to finish… 1. A good teacher will frame the learning by explaining to students how new learning will unfold and how it will be assessed.  
2. Estimates how much time it will take to reach your destination and readjusts the time as the trip continues… 2. A wise educator fully understands that time is the variable in learning; he or she uses feedback data from students throughout a unit to adjust the time required for learning to occur.  
3. Provides on-going and immediate feedback throughout the entire trip… 3. Research teaches us that students learn best when a teacher administers formative assessments and uses the data to provide feedback to the students.  
4. Recalculates when you make a wrong turn… 4. Many teachers use pacing guides to carry out unit plans. However, thoughtful teachers realize that it is often necessary to readjust plans when students do not learn in the allotted time.  
5. Tracks the trip in stages and provides visual and auditory details… 5. By administering a learning styles inventory to students, a teacher can use the feedback from the profile to plan the best way to meet all student needs.  
6. Tells how far you must go to complete your trip… 6. An essential component of good feedback is teaching students to self-assess their own learning and to set goals in order to complete required learning.  
7. Anticipates when traffic jams or roadblocks will occur… 7. By analyzing feedback data from students and completing a task analysis for planned learning, a skillful teacher will be better able to predict when students might experience frustration in their learning and plan accordingly to avoid pitfalls and slowdowns.  
8. Indicates points you will see during the trip and lets you select stops along the way that are important to you… 8. When a teacher incorporates feedback as to how students learn best into the planning process, he or she can often give students choices in how to demonstrate their learning.
  The GPS system is merely one example of how feedback has become a vital part of our everyday lives. From the time they learn to play video games, children receive and expect feedback on how to move to the next level of the game. Numerous reality television shows determine outcomes based on feedback votes from viewers. As soon as a young person acquires his or her first cell phone or learns how to use a computer, instant messaging, text messaging, and responses from peers become a routine part of their day. And who among us has not completed an online survey, made an online purchase, received confirmation for a travel plan, or clicked on an FAQ icon to find an answer to a troubling question. In a world in which feedback is prolific and vital to our daily decision making, it seems only logical that our students should be receiving growth-producing feedback on a regular basis. As teachers assess learning and provide students with clear, detailed feedback, students better understand how to adjust their time and focus to meet learning benchmarks. As a result, they will be more motivated to learn, feel more empowered, will more readily fulfill learning goals, and their self-confidence will increase. Ask yourself: Is my GPF system operating at its peak proficiency?    

September 2022 Update

School has started and we are thrilled to have so many teachers and students communicating about learning with gotLearning!

We have received incredible feedback and love hearing stories of how you are able to get to know your students and how they learn.

We have updated assignments to make it easier for student’s to turn in. We have made the ability to invite administrators into your classrooms much easier (adding co-teachers is next!) We have also made many refinements to the interoperability with Google Classroom/Docs/Slides/Sheets. Professional Teachers can now manage their school years in settings. 

We have also added Professional Conversations when you add your administrator to your classes!

Family View is Coming

Thank you to the teachers that joined our Family View Round Table. We are working on having family members be able to view their child’s learning conversations and assignments in November. 

August 2022 Update

School is right around the corner (and already started for many of you!) gotLearning wrapped up our summer professional development series – thanks to all the presenters and teachers who attended. This month we conducted our teacher roundtable on notifications and received a ton of great advice and feedback! We have heard you loud and clear. Thank you!

The product has added a new student view, updated the school year functionality so Teams and District licenses can see student’s previous years, labels are now searchable and clickable, and we made some more improvements to assignments.

New Student View

Professional Teachers can now see all of their students in one place. You may also create, edit and delete student’s information on this screen.