If you're like my team, you want to know how it goes - what's the parent perspective on the day, and what can you do better next time? Also, you know there will be parents who will want to meet with just the teachers sometime in the near future. The question is how to get information from the parents quickly and easily...
We used to have two stacks of papers - a survey and a conference request form. Parents would fill them out as needed, turn them in to the appropriate box, and then we'd take a day to sort through the information during our preps. Once we started using Google Docs, however, it seemed natural to eliminate the paper and switch to a digital format. We began experimenting with the 'create forms' option in Google Docs, and found that it works quite well for our needs:
You can see our parent conference request form here: https://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?hl=en&formkey=dDd1OXFCN056UFFGM1QtbWhXTHByd3c6MA#gid=0
And our student-led conference survey form is here: http://8gold.org/conference_survey.php
So, on conference day, we take out a laptop cart and set up a bank of 5 or 6 laptops. We launch the web browser on them, and load the conference survey page. At each conference table, we have a basic set of instructions, which ends with a request to take a moment to fill out the survey. At the bottom of the survey page is the link for the conference request form.
What are the benefits to using this system?
- No paper - we don't need to rifle through a stack of forms, or keep track of where we put them.
- Results are instant - with Google Survey, we can check on results in real time - it gives handy pie charts and graphs that show the responses in real time.
- Shared access: Each teacher - and anyone else that needs the information - can have instant access to it.
In Google Docs, just click Create-->Forms. It's a simple drag and drop process... then you just save the form, click "go to live form" and you're off to the races.
But we can make it even easier:
If your team is interested, drop us a note and we can give you a copy of ours, and help you set it up. Our preps are from 11:30 to 1 pm, and we can be available to help you at bus dismissal as well. So let us know, and we can get you up and running in no time.