Friday, November 7, 2014

Scooter vs Ferrari

I worked with a Year 10 Individuals & Societies last week, they had to work in a group to research and create an information poster on a political ideology.  They were reminded about using Easybib to create their bibliography, of which they all have an account through a school subscription. They mentioned that 'it was soooooooo painful to use Miss' (they hadn't installed the extension for their browser) and that it would take too long to work together along with Easybib. 

Not wanting to force them to go where they were showing resistance, but knowing they needed to keep track of the resources they were using through the group project I tried something new.  They were using a shared Google doc in each of their groups, and I persuaded one group to try the Google Add on of Easybib, which then led onto the other groups wanting to learn about this, so it spread through the room and by the end of the lesson, all students were using it.
(Google doc -> Add ons -> Get add ons -> Easybib -> install)

This add on is the bare bones, stripped down free version of Easybib. It does the job of creating a bibliography simply and quickly within Google docs. It was particularly good with the group work to enable the students to keep track of where they were accessing their information. It only has three citing functions - book, journal article and website, so we still had to refer to the full version of Easybib to remind them of how to cite a digital image and an article from a database.  Overall it did the job required and will hopefully encourage the students to move onto the full version. I did explain that it was just like riding a motor scooter in that it is the "get the job done" version of Easybib,  and for full power they needed to consider the Ferrari model for which the school pays. They will then find full enlightenment and enjoyment of research.

This quick and timely instruction was also testimony to me to of the power of being in the classroom at the right time when the students were ready to learn about a new skill and tool and were ready to apply it. One off lessons on a skill or tool or resource just do not stay with the students.  They need to see a personal and immediate connection for their use.

This was also good for me as I also have been exposed to more possible tool integration in the Google suite which look very interesting - these include lucidchart, texthelp study skills, bibliography annotator by Diigo, plus a host of others. Do check out the Add ons if you are in a Google suite school.

Using this page 
Anyone may link to this Library Grits without asking prior permission, I’d be honored and happy that you have found it useful. However, I would appreciate if you cited it correctly if you use any part of it wholly or separately.

This page can be cited as follows :
McKenzie, D. (2014, 7 November)  Scooter vs Ferrari. Retrieved from

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