5 Ways to App Smash with a Journey

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Bring all your favorite tools together

App Smashing is the practice of using multiple tools or apps in one project or activity. Whether you’re using Recap to moderate a chat with student or colleagues, we want you to be able to utilize all of the apps you love, and the best way to do this is with a Journey. Journeys allow you to link to any online content or resource, so it’s a great opportunity to pull in some of your other favorite tools as an introduction to a topic. Let’s take a look at how this works!

What is a Journey?

A Journey is a collection of online content, resources, or web-based activities (including links to other apps) gathered and arranged in a path for participants to follow. The path is accompanied by a short video from the Journey author, that introduces the topic and gives context to the resources. The video is short, 60 seconds or less, giving the author just enough time to engage the participants in what matters most about the topic and to add a personal touch to the chat.

By starting with a Journey, the teacher or chat moderator gets the opportunity to to tell a story about why this content is interesting, relevant and important to help develop new understanding. This also ensures that all chat participants can engage in the guiding questions with some minimum knowledge of the subject. The teacher might even incorporate online quiz apps to check and make sure that students have completed all the Journey steps.

We’ve just made it even easier to launch your chat in Recap using a Journey! There’s now a “Start with a Journey” button right at the top of the Queue for your convenience. You can even author your Journey right in the Queue interface. Now, it’s that much easier to start deeper, more empowering discussions with Recap.

Launch Your Chat with a Journey

As we’ve seen, chat is a great way to develop deeper understanding of a topic as a group, to gather formative assessment data, and to help students practice discussing their own work in progress. Some chat topics, anything based on personal experience, for example, need no introduction and participants can jump right in and start chatting within minutes. But if you are using a chat to develop deeper understanding of a topic that’s new to some or all participants, you’ll want to launch the chat with a Jounrey to give context, build a basis of understanding, or even challenge what they believe they already know about the topic.

If you incorporated another tool(s) into your Journey, think about how this might guide the chat in the Recap Queue. You may want to ask some questions to get students to reflect on the web-based activity, or see what questions they had after completing an online reading or lesson. If a quiz was involved, you might even want to link to the group’s quiz results in the Queue for consideration.

5 Apps to App Smash with a Journey

  1. Edpuzzle: Videos are a great way to engage students and introduce a topic. Rather than linking directly to Youtube or elsewhere online (which are blocked on some district networks), link participants to a video in Edpuzzle, which lets you track to make sure they’ve viewed the whole thing, and even add your own quizzes and annotations.
  2. Padlet: You might consider designing your Journey as a modern webquest. Provide students with a set of online research sources, then ask them to collect everything they find in a Padlet to share with the whole class.
  3. Quizlet: In most cases, the outcome of the Journey is the Recap chat itself, but if you want that extra bit of formative data, or to check for comprehension, include a Quizlet as the last step of the Journey. This way, you can check for understanding and make sure students went through every step of the path.
  4. Seesaw: The Journey path lets you gather together resources that support and deepen the discussion, but you can also include instructions for your students to follow, like a short writing prompt, an activity or experiment, or creating a small project. Whatever you have your students create in the Journey, you can document the process in Seesaw, and share out to parents or other teachers later on.
  5. Nearpod: You may want to take students on an even deeper dive into a topic before kicking off your Recap chat, and if you use Nearpod, this is a great way to App Smash the two! Link to your Nearbod lesson in your Journey, to be sure that your students start off with a solid foundational understanding of the subject before discussing it further.

Sharing is Caring

Did you know you can share out any Journey with a link? Share your Journeys by link with your colleagues (you could even post them on Twitter!), and not only can they view them, they can even save them to their Library for use with their own students.

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