K-12 Passion Portfolios Tool

Develop a way for students keep a portfolio that starts at kindergarten and ends in 12th grade which helps them share and identify passions.

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Update #5 March 24th, 2016 --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Our team has done an amazing job so far! We have a final story deck outlining Reach and why its important to have it come to life. 

We also have our pitch video and a prototype. You can check them out here: 


Prototype: https://reach-portfolio.herokuapp.com/#/Portfolio username:reach pw:higher

Pitch Video: https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/0B5KlWAq4GZtrR0p0c0prTi1tckU

Deck: https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/0B5KlWAq4GZtrR0p0c0prTi1tckU


Thank you to all of you who've put time and effort into this. It's been awesome working with you so far!


Update # 4 March 20th, 2016 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Using the sketches from our past meeting we started creating visual prototypes as well a Deck that tells the story of a student using our tool from K-12.

Additionally, we were also able to identify two main goals we have:

- To provide students with a tool that helps them store work that will be useful in their college application. This way we put less importance on grades and test scores and more importance on the process of their learning.

- Provide a tool and analytics for students to help them understand how the work they have reflected on over the years can help them identify their passions. 


We also have a tentative name: Reach!


Here is our story deck so far: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1IRZpGzNdg2NHu8hEhgXiwRz8yg-IQgBbbXwb2r6__A8/edit#slide=id.p4


Update # 3 March 18th, 2016-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

After looking at our interviews and talking about our goals for this tool we started the process of designing what it might look like at different school levels. 

During out sketching session we came up with 3 prototypes by using information from other teachers and past experiences. 

You can see the sketches here: https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/0B_QFiFebCrqiT1dETkc5TEFZeEU

It was an extremely productive meeting which helped us get started not he look and feel of Reach. 


Update # 2 March 15th, 2016----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

As we started beginning to prototype our idea into something tangible we decided to do some research and empathize with how this tool could impact teaching and learning at different levels. 

Empathizing: We had a great meeting where we created profiles of some of the users that would be using this tool. We identified who they were, what their needs are and what they would gain from using this tool.

We also had productive prototype with other teachers who are working on awesome projects on Teacher's Guild.

Angelo Truglio gave us some feedback on what students at the elementary level would need from the portfolios tool. Points from him that have been very helpful as we prototype were:

  • Support important character traits through the reflection process.
  • A tool that helped students grow, not just storytell.
  • Teach less, coach more with this tool. Teachers would use the posts from students to reflect and coach.


For the 9-12 level Matthew Drewette-Card gave us some amazing insight into what a portfolio piece needs to have in order to be useful for students at that age. He also gave us three main concise points:

  • Students need a tool that helps them create posts that concisely and explicitly show their work.
  • A tool that helps students show the goal they had with the piece being uploaded.
  • Attach assessment of the work presented so that it adds credibility to portfolio pieces.

Their feedback has helped us while we iterate with the look and feel of the portfolios tool at different age levels. Thank you both!


Update #1 March 12th, 2016--------------------------------------------------


Overview: (What’s this idea about)

This idea is all about giving students an empowering tool they can use to collect, curate and highlight their school work and share it with peers, teachers, parents and possible college choices.


Potential For Impact: (Why is this an idea that promotes continued growth?)

By giving students an easy and visually-appealing way to store their work, we promote independence and ownership of learning at all levels. As students get ready to apply to colleges, their collected body of work becomes a major tool to help showcase themselves to potential college choices. This helps even the field for students from all backgrounds. The process of their learning and major accomplishments become as important as test scores and grades.


Value Prop/Pitch: (How would you pitch this to other teachers in your school? Your principal? Etc)

For teachers, this tool provides a tool that has an easy interface to use so that technology integration becomes less intimidating.

It also provides a spaces where teachers can give prompt feedback to students to help them move forward in their learning engagements.

Additionally, analytics from the tool can give feedback back to teachers about the learning engagements. This helps modify, differentiate and plan for future learning.

Lastly, as students come from other grades or schools, teachers can see their body of work over their school life, so they can easily understand the students’ needs, passion, progress and skills.


How’d I get this idea off the ground?


The process of making this tool is being documented.

High Level overview notes (March 9th): http://bit.ly/1QSV87S

Design/empathize meeting deck(March 11th): http://bit.ly/1Mdct9k

White boarding meeting:  http://bit.ly/1P9Os2U

Review:  Thursday, March 18th


How you can get started:

At a K-2 level, students could have a focus on creating “proud of” posts. These posts would reflect areas that students think they have persevered in to succeed.

Teachers would be able to give feedback on posts to further promote growth in these areas.

At a 3-8 level, A section of their portfolio would showcase their most proud of work, as a curated section.

Teachers would be able to give feedback to promote further growth. Their area of focus would be the posts on outcomes in different classes. Through prompt feedback they can make choices on how to best move forward in learning engagements.

At a 9-12 level, students would continue to add to their subject and curated portfolios while also highlighting how they have made an impact to their community. (Either through mentoring younger students, community service, volunteering etc). The curated portfolio area would be the main tool to showcase to possible college choices. If needed, college could click on any showcased project post and see the process behind it.

Teachers would be able to give feedback to promote further growth. Their area of focus would be the posts on outcomes in different classes. Through prompt feedback they can make choices on how to best move forward in learning engagements. Teacher would also act as mentors on how to curate and best show work on curated portfolios.


Possible guidelines for posts for different age levels:

K-2 Posts Guidelines :“Proud of Moments”

Proud of moments posts:

Prompt students to speak about something they did that was challenging and that they are proud of accomplishing.  They could record, draw, use photos,  video tape themselves, or use text to recount:

What were they trying to do/learn about?

What the challenge was (or is)?

.What, if anything, made it difficult?

Why they  are proud of their accomplishment?

Prompted students to think about and choose what character trait(s) they  were showing  through their accomplishment.

  • https://characterlab.org/resources


Daily work posts:

  • This could include pictures, videos, doodles or short written posts. They could be categorized into subjects with tags/folders and would help teachers see how students are progressing in different areas. Parents would have access to their daily work uploads as well.


3-8 Posts Guidelines (Have an “Process of Learning” tab and a “Curated Portfolio” tab)

“Process of learning” posts:


  • Day-to-day posts about the work they are doing in different subject areas.
  • Posts could include assignments from teachers.
  • Reflections on parts of a process leading up to a final pieces.
  • Inquiry posts about things students are interested to learn more about.



Curated portfolios posts:.

  • Explain your work.
  • Mention the goal you are worked towards and how this piece helped you achieve that goal.
  • Explain why you are proud of the work posted.
  • If any, what obstacles did you overcome?
  • What character trait are you showing with this work?

              -  https://characterlab.org/resources



9-12 Posts Guidelines Have an “Process of Learning” tab and a “Curated Portfolio” tab

“Process of learning” posts:


  • Day-to-day posts about the work they are doing in different subject areas.
  • Posts could include assignments from teachers.
  • Reflections on parts of a process leading up to a final pieces.
  • Inquiry posts about things students are interested to learn more about.


Curated portfolios posts:.


  • Explain your work.
  • Mention the goal you are worked towards and how this piece helped you achieve that goal.
  • Explain why you are proud of the work posted.
  • If any, what obstacles did you overcome?
  • What character trait are you showing with this work?

              -  https://characterlab.org/resources

  • Reflections about what student would have done differently (done months or years later) about a particular project they posted.


Original Post-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Google for education has done an amazing job on the tools to provide to schools to use for free. Blogger helps students keep blogs for years. Through each post, you can see students' progressions in what they learn, are interested in and their personal opinions. 

Google drive is great for keeping documents on the cloud that students are working on. By using google docs along with google drive, students can collaborate easily on work that they are passionate about. They can keep these documents for as many years as necessary. 

These tools have become really common among a huge amount of schools in the U.S. and internationally. However, they are not easy to use at the lower grades.  Files within them are somewhat easily transferrable from one school to another, even when both schools use GAFE tools. 

What if we could create one tool, that integrates the best parts of the existing GAFE tools, to keep track of students passions, interests, "proud-of" moments and excellent work from kindergarten through 12th grade. 

This tool would:

- Easy transfer of portfolio from school to school. (In case students move)

- An interface that was easily manageable for students K-12 alike. 

- One place that stored links, audio, video and content in a blog-like way.

- Easy access for colleges to see the body of work of a student throughout their K-12 years. 

- A digital place for students to find, express and share their passions.

- Provide an app for students to use in 1:1 environments. 

- Easy parent access through a parent app. 



Have a doc or slides that you're collaborating in? Link it here.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1_WTN6bfPA8sJ7tZPnpf_Q7lxAv5oeYcoHS5x4LcYLY0/edit?usp=sharing

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Photo of Gwen Rino
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I am deeply interested in tools that support students' ownership of their learning and growth and have done a lot of work with portfolios. A challenge I've found with both paper and digital portfolios with middle school students is that students' reflection and curation work doesn't seem to come from an authentic place. Curious to hear others' ideas about what helps students feel invested in portfolio work.

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