Have a Content Smackdown with Mote!

Have you heard about mote? It is a google chrome extension that adds a little happy purple button into google slides, docs, forms, and maybe more…? Here’s what the happy purple button does… it allows you to add VOICE messages directly into slides, docs, and forms!

Okay, so first of all…. thank you, mote! I can speak soooo much faster than I can type! How awesome is this for giving students feedback on assignments, teachers?? So good! One click to record and one click to insert? YES! And then students can hear your tone of voice??? YES again!

But then, I had a fun idea for getting students (or participants) to discuss content at high cognitive levels. As a principal, I am preparing for an upcoming professional development day. We are providing staff with a choice assignment so they can learn what they need (and not something they already know or aren’t interested in). We are then going to ask teachers to share the top strategy they learned and how they plan to implement it in their classroom. But… if you know me… you know that I have to amp it from “just share.” Thus, the “Strategy SMACKDOWN!” was born!

In this activity, I am going to ask staff to simply record a mote sharing how they will apply one strategy they learned during the day… but to really try to sell it! Wrestle-mania hype voices encouraged! hahaha

How can this apply to our students?

What if you ask students to pick something from the content you’ve been covering as the best, most important, or most influential part of the content and tell WHY it is the most important. For example, if you’ve been studying the parts of a plant, you could ask students to describe the most important part of a plant and why. What will students have to include in that response? TONS of information about the part of the plant they chose as well as why that part is more important than other parts. Or, a reading teacher could ask students “What is the most helpful reading strategy and why?” In this case, students will not only describe the strategy but also share how they apply it and why it helps them.

Guess what? Because you asked for their opinion, they will talk about your content with such PASSION that you will be BLOWN AWAY! That’s why it’s also fun to kick it up a notch by making it a SMACKDOWN- asking students to really sell why THEIR opinion is the best.

If you’re brainstorming how to use this idea with your content, remember to choose a question in which there is really no right answer — the goal is to get students to think at HIGH LEVELS about your content and select which is most important, most influential, most beneficial, and WHY.

Click this link to grab a copy of this template for use with students, if you’re interested!

Please share in the comments how you use this or other ways you use mote!

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