Google Forms and Surveying Students On Private Data

I’m lucky to teach at a New Tech school where I have a class set of laptops, enough for a 1:1 student to computer ratio. I’m also grateful that my school district, Austin ISD, gave every student, from PreK to Grade 12, their own Google email account and server space on “the cloud”. I love using Google forms in my classroom. I’ve used it to gather data from students for a statistics lessons. I regularly survey students on our classroom climate- like whether or not they feel challenged, safe, supported, and what I could be doing better as their teacher. And I use to gather traditional multiple choice responses for quizzes and tests. I experienced exhilarating levels of geek joy when I figured out how to code a simple IF THEN statement to grade students’ multiple choice responses. Hours saved. Thank you, computer.

Tomorrow I want to survey for a different reason.

I want to try a few “flipped classroom” assignments. Honestly, I’m not super excited about it especially after reading this tearfully boring description. But I would like to be able to ask my Algebra II students to watch a video at home on solving systems of equations with matrices and then have them apply it to a problem situation in class the next day. (After watching a few videos on the topic, like this one, I found myself muting the speaker and wishing for a fast-forward button.)

I teach at Eastside Memorial High School which has a very high percentage of student on free or reduced lunch (~98% and, as an administrator once joked, the other 2% probably just lost their form). I’ve asked students to do something on the internet before, like submit a project online, and I’ve heard many say they don’t have a computer or the internet at their home. How do I flip our classroom?!

To get a better idea of the percent of without internet access, I put together this Google form survey (go ahead… fill it out and screw up my results). Is this fair that I ask them to fill this out? I think my students trust me, but the results will probably be inaccurate. Is there a better way to do this?


4 thoughts on “Google Forms and Surveying Students On Private Data

  1. I disagree. First of all, our relationship with privacy is different than the younger generation. I already know some stuff about them that I’d never tell a soul. Secondly, so many of our kids are in the same boat; what is wrong with looking like _everyone else_ around you? Lemme know what happens. Yell across the hall or something. XOXO–> That means thanks, right?

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