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May 2, 2011 Putting the Wow in Your Open House By Megan Power
Grades PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5, 6–8

    The end of the year is rapidly approaching. As teachers face state tests, finish up learning units, and try to push their students to that next level, Open House is lurking right around the corner. Click to read ten technology tips that will show off your students’ learning and wow parents at your Open House.

    These ten technology tips can easily be implemented to make your Open House successful:

    1. Create a student video documenting your day. Students can easily use a Flip video or digital camera to film the day and then edit the footage in free programs such as Movie Maker or iMovie. Have this playing on the projector or at a computer station.

    2. Have your students create a Photo Story digital portfolio sharing their writing. Add in recordings of students reading their writing and have them playing on a loop at a computer station.

    3. Use your interactive whiteboard to involve your parents. Put up a lesson that you have done and encourage the parents to try it out. They will be nervous and very excited, as many adults have not used an interactive whiteboard before.

    4. If you have voters, ask parents questions and have them vote in their answer. Just giving them a small experience in using this device will give many parents a better understanding of its power in the learning process.

    5. Have a computer station where parents can see students using the particular programs your school has available. Many times parents just need to see what programs are available to them before they give their children more opportunities to use them.

    6. Have your students take digital photos of the subjects they are learning about and put them on a bulletin board. Make sure parents know the students took the pictures.

    7. Take digital photos of students' work samples from the fall and of their current work. Have students record what they are proud of and explain their progress.

    8. Have some students record the parents during Open House with a Flip camera. Use this footage to create a simple video to show students their parents' reactions to their learning.

    9. Use a Flip camera or Webcam at a computer station to have parents record a memory from when they were in their child’s grade. The next day the students could watch and compare and contrast parents’ memories.

    10. Post a list of the technology skills your students have mastered. Creating the list together and putting their skills down on paper will fascinate you. Some examples might include navigating the Internet, minimizing and maximizing a screen, copying and pasting, embedding graphics and videos, commenting on blogs, publishing writing on the Internet, etc.

    As you start to think about and prepare for your Open House, remember to try out these high-tech tips. And please share a tip you use or an activity you do during your Open House. We would love to hear from you!


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