“Follow effective action with quiet reflection. From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action.” By Peter Drucker
I am always looking for ways to expand and grow as a teacher/educator. I routinely reflect on my work so that I can continue to make learning enjoyable and stimulating for my students and for the teachers I work with. At this time of year when the school year is coming to a close I like to reflect on my practice through surveys.When I was a teacher in the classroom, I liked to give not only the parents an opportunity to help me improve as an educator but the students as well through a survey. I then used this data to help me improve for the coming years. As a facilitator this year, I am also doing a survey to improve my practice but basing it on the teachers wants/needs.
When you decide to do a survey it is important to remember a few things. One thing is that when you give a survey you need to be prepared for what could come back to you. You have to be open to the feedback and not take things too personally. The second thing you want to remember is to make it anonymous, so they feel comfortable giving feedback to you. In previous years I have always done paper surveys but this year I am going paperless and using google documents. Below is how to use google docs to make a survey.
1. Login into google site. At the top of the of the page you will see many things google offers such as mail, You Tube etc.
2. Click on documents and then on the top left side click create; a box of options comes up, scroll down and click forms.
3. At the top, where it says ‘untitled,’ give your survey a name such as Parent Survey, Student Survey, Facilitator Survey etc.
4. Below the title there is a place where you can put directions or your reasoning for your survey. You do not have the fill this part out if you don’t think it is necessary.
5. For the next part, you are going to want to decide what type of questions you want to ask. I suggest having your questions prepared before hand as it makes this portin go by faster. You can have many different styles of questions such as open ended, multiple choice, yes or no etc. Once you have decided what your first question is going to be, in the question title, put your question. (Help text-is if you need to clarify anything or if you want to put more directions) Then chose your question style type. Once you are done you can make this question required or not by clicking on the box.
6. Continue with step #5 until you have all the questions you want in the survey. Sometimes you have to add a new question by going to the top left corner and clicking new item. Make sure the questions you are asking are questions that will improve your practice and are valuable. You do not want to ask questions, for the sake of asking questions. Something else to keep in mind is to make sure that you don’t ask too many questions or people tend to not want to fill them out. I try to keep it between 6-10. If you want to change the order of the questions, you can click and drag it to the correct placement.
7. Once you are finished, in the top left corner there is a theme button. You can chose a template for your survey’s background and you can ‘preview’ them by clicking on the one you like. Once you decide on the one you like, in the top left corner, click apply.
8. Now that you are finished, you can decide how you want to distribute the survey. You can email the link or embed it into your website.
9. After the teachers fill it out, the data is populated into a spreadsheet for you to view and print. It will always be saved in your google documents so the following year you can tweak it and not have to recreate.
Below are sample questions from past and present surveys and they type of question style.
Sample Questions I ask Parents:
I felt that there was good communication between the school and home. (Scale question type)
What would you have liked to see more of? What would you have changed? (Open Ended)
Sample Questions I ask Students:
What parts of next year do you feel prepared you for middle school? (Open ended)
What grade would you give this class? __________Why? (Open ended)
Sample Questions I ask Teachers:
Regarding support with planning, what has particularly helpful? What would you change? (Open ended)
What professional development do you want to have next year? (List several options, check all the apply)