Seesaw: Grove Road: The Journey So Far

Our Seesaw journey began last academic year when I started to use Seesaw as a class teacher with my Year 6 children. They loved it when they were given the opportunity to choose pieces of work from the week that they were really proud and share it on Seesaw. They were delighted when their family would ‘like’ or ‘comment’ on their piece of work, and when we would look at our Seesaw account as a group to see what everyone had shared. It soon became on of the children’s favorite times of the week!

After the Autumn Term when I felt confident that Seesaw was a great tool for us to use as a school – parents were giving feedback that they loved getting notifications during the day– I decided to share it with colleagues. Over the Spring Term, other teachers began to set up their classes and share children’s work. By the Summer Term, the majority of teachers were using Seesaw successfully. Children across school were having their learning celebrated on a weekly basis with their families, and loving it! We were very happy with the way Seesaw was working!

From celebrating learning to sharing children’s reflections:

Our school is in full swing with the ReflectED approach, with metacognition strategies being extremely high profile all over the building! Our children are becoming increasingly confident at using colour tags and reflecting on their learning. Across school, we’re celebrating ‘marvellous mistakes’ and being‘red/yellow’, because being these colours means children have challenged themselves to attempt new learning – they’re a bit unsure and are in ‘The Learning Pit’, struggling away, showing resilience until they experience their ‘Eureka moment’. This year, we’ve shifted in the way we use Seesaw. Children still use it to photograph/video work that they’re proud of, but more and more we’re using it as a tool for reflection. On a daily basis across school, children are writing reflections about their learning and sharing them on Seesaw. We also have Seesaw ‘booths’ in many classrooms, which children use to perform video reflections during lessons. We’re pleased that we’re now using Seesaw not only as a means for the children to keep parents updated as to what they’re learning during the school day, but also for promoting oracy and sharing metacognitive language. Seesaw is helping us to share metacognitive approaches with parents; another powerful way to spread the ReflectED word!

Children beginning to use Seesaw for reflections – ‘marvellous mistakes’ and learning from them, as well as a focus on the process of learning, are now more widely celebrated on Seesaw as our children develop ‘growth mind-sets’. They now want to share how they’ve learnt and what mistakes they’ve learnt from with their parents. The culture of metacognition is developing at Grove Road!

Gaining traction – boosting our Seesaw stats and increasing the impact:

Now that we are using Seesaw across school in every classroom, and children are enjoying using it for recording reflections and sharing their learning with parents, we want to gain traction with the school community and engage parents even more with it.

We held a ‘Seesaw’ workshop for parents during parents’ evenings this week, with teachers all encouraging parents to download the app if they hadn’t already, reminding them that it’s a great way for them to see what their child is doing throughout the school day. The parents are giving positive feedback about the app, and we’re beginning to get some encouraging stats!

Our parent visits are rising rapidly as more and more are connecting and habitually checking their child’s Seesaw account. We’re delighted to now be a Seesaw Ambassador school due to one of our teachers, Charlotte Voakes, becoming a Seesaw Ambassador! This is down to the amount she uses it to celebrate her children’s achievements and the extent she models its use as a teacher. Charlotte’s enthusiasm for Seesaw has led to a healthy rivalry developing amongst the classes, with teachers regularly asking me if they can see the school’s Seesaw stats – pieces of work uploaded, parent visits, likes and comments. Our next goal is to ensure more parents are connected to their child’s account; we’re proud of our stats so far, but we want parents to be checking Seesaw every day to ‘check in’ with their child’s class.

Seesaw has quickly become a powerful tool for our school community. In an age of technology where parents and children are constantly using social media, blogs and instant messaging, Seesaw provides us with the perfect tool for keeping in touch with our parents, who have an ever growing appetite for hearing updates from ‘Team Grove Road’ as we strive to go above and beyond for our incredible children!

We’re aiming for our parental engagement to grow and grow, and for Seesaw to become even more ‘high profile’ across our school community.

To follow our progress at Grove Road with ReflectED and Seesaw, visit our Twitter feed @grove_road or search the hashtag #TeamGR .

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