For a number of years now, colleagues in Enterprise have been trying to tackle this issue. We needed a quick and effective way to give students their overall marks, ratings on elements of their work and comments, but without taking too much lesson time and at the same time monitoring the progress of students at their workstations.
The first solution involved a spreadsheet. To avoid other students seeing the marks and comments of others, each row was cut and then pasted into an individual spreadsheet which was then emailed to the particular student. It worked, but it was not time efficient!
Refined Solution #1
With DHSB moving across to Google and the wide range of possibilities that presented, I searched for solutions along the lines of using Gmail to mail merge these individual assessments. It was then I discovered the whole new world of Google Scripts and coding as well as the Google Script Gallery. Brilliant!
This link to Digital Inspiration’s page explains the concept:
The Google Developers’ tutorial can be found here:
The main problem with this solution was it involved accessing the actual coding and adjusting it to meet the design of the spreadsheet being used. Not a very good solution for busy colleagues.
Refined Solution #2
I researched some more and discovered a more effective solution, produced by
Romain Vialard (https://plus.google.com/u/0/+RomainVialard-public/about )
The script “Yet Another Mail Merge” does not involve any tweaking of the actual code and is very efficient once the concept is understood, and the initial spreadsheets and draft emails are setup.
For my GCSE ICT work I have set up separate draft emails covering the 3 main sections of the practical work the students are doing. The feedback can be as brief as “Yes/No” in various columns or it can be extensive as many sentences of comment in one spreadsheet cell.
My current Year 11 set have said they like the feedback and how it is delivered. Clearly, once the data has been fed back, the reinforcement comes with those all-important teacher-student conversations.
The Swedish Connection
Having had this experience of Google Script, it meant that a few colleagues were able to understand fully the potential of Flubaroo when it was demonstrated to us by our visiting Swedish colleagues taking part in our Regio Project.
Please see Nick Berryman’s piece at
David Butcher @DHSBCreative