“Communication leads to community, that is, to understanding, intimacy and mutual valuing.” By Rollo May

A backchannel is a great way your classroom can have a digital conversation. When using a backchannel in your classroom it is important to have clear expectations of how to use it. When doing an activity with a backchannel (really it should be when doing any classroom activity) make sure you set the purpose and have an outcome for the activity. Below are some reasons to use a backchannel, ways you can add it into your classroom and sites you can get started with.

Reasons to use a backchannel: 

1. It allows all students voice to be heard

2. It provides students with an outlet to engage in conversation (especially for those that are introvert/shy)

3. It allows the student to participate at their own pace

4. It is a written representation of what happened in the classroom

5. It helps build classroom community (if used correctly and with expectations)

Ways you can add it into your classroom:

1. Hold discussions about a book or other topic (especially for when watching a video clip to share thoughts)

2. Brainstorm ideas for projects, writing etc

3. Informal assessment/exit ticket or to poll student responses

4. You or students can provide links to resources and other rich media

5. As a ‘help desk’: Students can pose questions and you or your students can answer and help.

Sites to utilize for a backchannel:

1. 81 Dash is the newest and so far one of my favorites. I love that it works easily with Google Classroom.

2. Today’s Meet

3. Backchannel Chat

4. Chatzy

5. Twitter – This one I recommend if you have students that are older, such as High School or College but also can be great for educators  during Professional Learning. You can also use Padlet as a backchannel but it can be used for so many other things as well, it is not solely for back-channeling.

I would love to hear your reasons to use a backchannel, ways you add it into your classroom and/or sites you like for a backchannel.

Comments on: "Backchannel and the Classroom" (1)

  1. […] Backchannel and the Classroom | Inside the classroom, outside the box! #feedly …eclassroomoutsidethebox.wordpress.com/2015/07/12/bac… […]

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