Language Sensei

A Language Teacher's Journey

Love Flipgrid but …My Flipgrid App-Hack for Privacy Law Compliance…

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One of my goals this semester has to provide more ‘personal’ feedback on speaking. I am giving non-graded feedback on more conversations done during class as well as recorded quickly on a mobile phone. Another new tool for this (no Google Voice in Canada!) is  Flipgrid. There are teachers out there doing amazing things with it – check out Laura Sexton’s blog if you want ideas for using it.

I loved Flipgrid when I tried it…and I still do – and my original post outlined my steps/tips as a newbie to the app.   I liked the possibilities for an alternate way to give focused feedback on a particular concept like “tell me three things you have to do on the weekend” or “tell me two things you did yesterday and how they were”. Students, once they were assured others would not see their video, responded to the prompt and the majority were spontaneous and not reading from a paper or memorized (and if they did – it’s still ‘presentational’ to me and it’s the feedback on the concept that’s key.)

Flipgrid worked very successfully for me until it became an issue. Under Canadian privacy laws, if I ask a student to use an app or program that requires registering of any kind, and that app’s/program’s data is held outside of Canada, I must seek parent permission to do so (because the data is then subject to that countries’ laws),   Originally I thought Flipgrid met this criteria. But after a comment on the original post from another Canadian teacher, and a discussion with my principal, I took a harder look at their terms of use. They are very well laid out and easy for an educator to understand. But, alas, I learned that email data would be held in the US and that’s a ‘parent permission required’ issue for us. Technically that’s why my district does not allow Google Apps for Education but does allow Microsoft (which agreed to hold data on Canadian servers). If students didn’t provide an email I ‘d be fine but that option was key for me for instant feedback.

So what to do. After some discussion with my colleagues, and my principal I looked to what it was that Flipgrid provided. Video recorded snippets for focused feedback and a quick ’email link’ to send that instant reply. My ‘Flipgrid App-hack’ was then born. We now do something very similar and we call it “Video Selfie”.

  1. I set out the ‘prompt’ based upon a structure/concept we’ve been working on including in class.
  2. Students take a selfie using their phone. They are allowed to apply any fun filters that they want but I must see their lips move!
  3. They email me their video (next year I may be using Microsoft’s Class Notebook and would then do this via that)
  4. I watch and send back the feedback
  5. (No phone?: Students without access to a cell phone come see me at lunch and use mine to record)

It’s not slick, it doesn’t have a cool app but it is doing the job. They love adding filters and don’t worry about others seeing their videos. I don’t have to worry about issues with privacy laws….and that’s something everyone is a little more aware of these days!

Colleen

 

 

One Comment

  1. Seems a great way for teachers to see production from less vocal students. I’m glad you found a work-around to continue this practice!

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