The dynamic triangle

A bespoke, shared e-document that surfaces the concerns of teachers, students, and guardians before, during and after meeting.

Photo of Jared Baird
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What I imagine here is a editable visual on a tablet--or better yet, a smartphone-- that allows the three stakeholders to communicate their thoughts and concerns ahead of time (and in real time) creating the document collaboratively. It might be in the shape of a triangle with spaces at the three points for each participant group (student, teacher/advisor, school) to insert their key points. For the student, it would empower them as an equal member of the conversation and allow them to see what's in store. No more ambushes! For parents, it allows them to see what their child is thinking about, aspiring to, or worrying about. Also, no ambushes! For schools, it helps relieve the anxiety associated it with the lead up to these conferences. We can see where parents and students will be directing their energy and we can prepare. It also provides space for next steps so there is proper follow-up or follow-through. Finally, and this is huge for our school, a format like this, adopted by all teachers would allow us to create a template that ensures that school-side concerns are communicated equitably. For example, at the high school level, there are many families who do not know the requirements for college entry or how best to prepare for standardized test--essential content of the parent-advisor conference. The "teacher point" of the triangle would have such points posted on the triangle for ALL students.

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Photo of Charles Shryock, IV

I'm digging the concept of a dynamic triangle! Maybe something like this?

Wondering what other metaphors we can incorporate into this.

Photo of Jared Baird

Charles! That's what I was envisioning but I didn't know how to make it! Is it a Google Doc add-on? As for the content, I love the "Q2" since the content changes dramatically from Q2 to Q4. That's the 'dynamic' part. What I'm interested in, beyond the metaphor, is usability. How might students have easy access to it before and after the meeting? How might parents be able to access it without equal access to technology? How might teachers store it for easy access from year to year? 

Photo of Charles Shryock, IV

Cool!  Glad we are on the right track. This file above is a Google Drawing – just shared it with you to edit. 

Great question about accessibility. Maybe an easier option would be to have a simple survey that captures three comments/questions from each person. Even cell phone users with a data plan could do that, or maybe you could have a computer terminal at the school where people did that right before the meetings. Then you could automatically populate and share a document that had everyone's comments/questions, still using the triangle to symbolize that everyone's voice matters... I think I could do this easily with existing Google apps. 

Question: Would you want all parties to see each others' questions before the meeting, or not? 

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