Picking a Learning Management System (LMS) for your classes is a tricky task nowadays due to the wide variety of solutions. Does Seesaw fit the requirements when it comes to teaching high school students?
Is Seesaw Good for High School Students? Yes, Seesaw is good for high school students thanks to its advanced characteristics. It effectively permits teachers to initiate tasks or assignments and include guidance or templates for pupils to use at home. This LMS includes a lot of useful features that make the e-learning process more efficient. Among these features, the most noteworthy are:
- Parent Teacher Communication
- Assignment Submissions
- Optimized interface
- Integrated portfolio
- Multi-feature free plan
- Extended compatibility
Now that you know what makes Seesaw good for high school students, let’s take an in-depth look at its features.
Parent Teacher Communication
High school is one of the most important periods of a student’s life. Ensuring that the student does learn is one of the key aspects of the modern educational process. When a student does not pay enough attention to tasks assigned by their teacher. This will mean he will not develop competencies in those specific subjects.
As a result, teachers involved in the learning process must do their best during the classes to teach the students. But what happens with the students after the class? They have to pay attention to the tasks assigned as homework. The fact that Seesaw allows students’ families to be added to the classrooms gives the teacher the ability to communicate directly with the parent. This means they can talk to them about how the their son or daughter is progressing.
Whenever the teacher wants to inform a student’s family about his progress or about an assignment that he did not finish they can do this. They only have to click on the student and select its family members. The teacher will select the what assignment or task they wish to include in the e-mail will email this to the parent with the teacher’s message.
Consequently, parents can track their children’s progress closely. This helps make the parents aware of and responsible for engaging in their own child’s education. This means it does not have to wait until Student/Teacher nights to get the news.
Additionally, teachers can send urgent messages to students’ families. For example, it can inform pupils’ parents that the school is closing early due to massive snowfall or other issues. That way, the parents are always up to date in terms of problems that may appear at their children’s school during the day.
As a Learning Management System (LMS) you can use Seesaw to management many classroom activities. Seesaw provides many ways that students can upload content type for their assignments.
Students’ work can be submitted as:
- Photos (can include narration/text/shapes for additional explanation)
- Videos (used for speaking assignments or physical education tasks)
- Drawings (diagrams or graphs that can be explained using text)
- Notes (text that may include narration)
- Links (adequate links that ensures a better understanding of their work)
Having an easy-to-use interface is especially important for an LMS because not all the students have high IT skills. The interface that Seesaw provides is simply perfect for any kind of student or teacher. So, let us review what each of them can do in the system.
After creating a class, the teacher will gain access to the class management section. This page contains different features. Using this administrative page the teacher can:
- Add students
- Add students’ families
- Send announcements
- Post activities
- Assign tasks
- Generate class codes
- Send and receive messages
- Check students’ progress
To do this all the teacher has to do is to click the (+) Students button on the right side of the administrative panel. They can then choose whether the students can join using their Google accounts or not. After making the selection a pop-up with further instructions will appear on their screen.
If the teacher chooses to allow his students to connect using their Google accounts, a class code containing eight letters will be generated. This code is valid for seven days. Seesaw strongly advises not to share the code using social media, as malicious individuals may interfere with your classes.
If the teacher does not allow their students to connect to a Seesaw class using their Google accounts there are two more options. Shared device or 1:1 device. Shared device means that multiple students connect to the same class using a shared device (For example two brothers connecting to the English class using the same laptop). 1:1 device refers to a situation where every student has their own device.
In both cases, the teacher will be prompted to enter his students’ names on a list managed by Seesaw. This list will grant access only to the students that the teacher mentioned. The teacher can also add students’ families to help them track their children’s progress.
To create an assignment the teacher must click on the green plus icon ‘Add’ on the right side of the page and select ‘Assign Activity’. After the loading of the pop-up window, the teacher has to select a previously created activity. If there is no activity to choose from the teacher will have to click on the ‘Create new activity’ button and configure a new task for his students.
Other teachers’ assignments can be downloaded using this link: https://app.seesaw.me/activities.
The student interface is just as simple as the one that teachers use. To join a classroom, the student must access https://web.seesaw.me/ and create a student account. After this, he must log in and click the ‘Enter a student code’ button. Eventually, he will be prompted to enter the code that his teacher has generated.
The most important task that students can do using Seesaw is solving tasks assigned by their teachers. The student can see the requirements of the task, fulfill them using his device, and then upload the results on the platform. As mentioned before there are multiple types of files that can be used by the students to upload their content.
Each student has a panel that records their progress during the learning process. This progress tracks the educational outcomes as well as whether certain competencies have been developed or not. This progress can be seen by both the teacher and the student’s family.
Seesaw features an integrated portfolio. This allows the student to keep a portfolio of their work they can show to others. This could be other students, teachers, or parents. This portfolio prepares them for life in the real world where for certain jobs they will need just such a portfolio of work. This also means is a student changes teachers or goes to the next grade other teachers can review where they are up to.
The LMS allows the students to continue to study the work at home and even after the class is finished until it is archived, they can review the course material. This is great for when their next subject builds on this subject.
The content that is uploaded by the students is stored in an online cloud. Neither the student nor the teacher has to pay for the cloud storage. This is the main idea behind Seesaw. The integrated portfolio is one of the most important features that this LMS provides. It is helpful for everyone.
Multi-feature free plan
Seesaw provides its features for free to any teacher that registers and sets-up his class. The free plan includes all the critical features with minimal limitations. However, if you want to use Seesaw for your entire institution, you should get in touch with their team to get a quote.
Seesaw For Schools features premium features that enhance creativity and make the classroom more customizable. Those features include:
- Online library
- Portfolios are automatically transferred from grade to grade
- Parent engagement analysis
- Save work in progress as drafts
- Scheduled activity sharing
- And more.
Seesaw can be accessed using almost any kind of device. Regardless of its operating system (Android, Windows, or iOS), students and teachers can access the SeeSaw platform using this link: https://app.seesaw.me. To use all the features available, make sure that your device has a working camera and a microphone.
Seesaw is compatible with a bunch of other apps and software solutions serving different purposes. Among the most important and popular ones, there is:
- DropBox (providing additional file storage)
- Code.org (used during coding classes)
- Google Drive (also providing additional file storage)
- Google Slides (used for sharing presentations)
- Prezi (has the same purpose as Google Slides but features more functions)
- YouTube (used to share relevant videos)
- And more.