Problem Solving.

In Journalistic Writing,  we are in our Sports Writing unit. I have about 10 students who covered the football game last Friday, and they split up the interview responsibilities. Most of them recorded the interviews on their phones.

Rather than have coaches and players interviewed 10 times by 10 different kids, they planned to share all reporting notes, including audio. But we encountered a few problems. 

Problem 1: students didn’t share notes on the game or from interviews over the weekend because they didn’t have emails. 

Problem 2: students can’t email audio files from Quick Voice because they’re too big. (Quick Voice won’t email audio files larger than 5 MB.)

Problem 3: though I can upload audio files to Drive from my computer, the iPad won’t play the audio files. 

I solved Problem 1 by suggesting students move their notes files into the Class Shared Folder, because once they move files there, it’s shared with everyone. Problem 1 solved. On to the next.

One student said, “What if I just recorded the audio files in Voice Memo on my phone and emailed the files to Ms. Rowse?” 

Yep, that worked. So Problem 2 solved.

Problem 3? Well, I have to import their audio files to iTunes on my computer and then sync the iPads so the audio files are in iTunes there. Not ideal, but it could be worse. 

Here’s the takeaway: if this had happened last semester, I would’ve had no clue how to start solving some of the issues that arise using the iPads. I had MANY moments of panic last spring when something didn’t work the way I wanted to, and I would get flustered and my default was often “okay forget it and let’s go back to slate and chalk.”

This semester? Every time a student has a problem, my mind has shifted to “find a solution.” And to steal from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, “DON’T PANIC.” The solutions aren’t always perfect, but they are there. 

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