Wanna Hangout?

Posted by & filed under Blackboard, Circles, Destinations, EAP, Education, Faculty Development, Information Technology, Technology, Uncategorized.

This summer I am taking Destination Circles of Innovation.  I just learned about Google Hangout from James May. Edie, James, and I “hanged out” for a few hours, and I learned a few tricks that I want to try next semester. Google Hangout seems like a combination of Skype, Facebook, Youtube, texting, and much more fun stuff in one!

hangout_snapshot_1   hangout_snapshot_2 hangout_snapshot_0

Edie                                            Tanya                                   James


Since Google Hangout allows you to have a video conversation with up to 10 people while they are on their computer, phone, or tablet, I thought it would cool to try to have office hours online. Through Google Hangout, a student can share his paper and I can give him instant feedback.

Google Hangout on Air allows live streaming, going live on Google+ and YouTube. A conversation or discussion will be recorded and automatically saved on one’s YouTube channel. This new technology, launched in 2013, inspired me to try Reading Circles with my EAP students.

What is Reading Circle?

  • A reading circle (also called a literature circle) is a group of students who are reading the same text. When they meet, they discuss the parts of the book they have read and plan for the next session. “The [reading] circle is a student-centered cooperative learning reading activity for a group of four or more students.
  • Each member of a circle is assigned a specific aspect of critical reading.
  • Reading circles “provide a way for students to engage in critical thinking and reflection as they read, discuss, and respond to [texts]. Students reshape and add onto their understanding as they construct meaning with other readers in their group.”

 Reading Circle Benefit Students by

  • breaking down a very complex task (reading critically) into manageable parts,
  • giving students the chance to discuss the reading tasks for peer feedback,
  • allowing students to negotiate meaning
  • developing confidence in their own interpretations
  • giving opportunities for apprenticing critical thinking in the context of academic discussion.

Group Members’ Responsibilities

  • Summarize
  • breaking down a very complex task (reading critically) into manageable parts (identify Important Terms/Concepts)
  • Identify Interesting Points (points needing clarification)
  • Organize Discussion
  • Connect text to outside ideas

By Hanging out on Air, students can meet online to finish reading circles, and post the link of their discussion on Blackboard. Also, during their reading circles, if they have questions, they can contact me and we can “hangout” together.


Wanna Hangout? Bring your book and let’s Google Hangout!


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