My district (heck I think the whole state) requires that teachers keep a record of each and every time I contact a parent or a parent contacts me. In the past I did this in a notebook but there would be a time when I didn’t have the notebook on me or when I forgot it at home and sometimes – the notebook sprouted some legs and went to hide somewhere in my desk
Now being a Google school I have devised a much better way to keep track of this. My first thought was I just make a spreadsheet and enter everything into the spreadsheet. The problem with that is that sometimes, I need to write a lot and the cell height or width may make it a pain to see what I’m typing. Then it dawned on me – why not make a Google Form and just enter the info there! I can even make a link at the bottom to submit a new form if I have multiple entries to add at one time.
See also: An administrator’s guide to Google Forms
OK, here is what my form looks like in all its illustrious glory.
Yep! There it is in all its glory. As you can see I have fields for this information
- Student’s last name (required)
- Student’s first name (required)
- Contact type (required)
- Parent’s name (required)
- Phone number (optional)
- Reason for call (required)
- Result of the call (required)
I should have put Reason for contact but I’ll fix that up for next year.
Now, here is the great part. Every time I fill out this form, Google automatically throws that data into a spreadsheet for me. It even adds in a timestamp (down to the second). So if I want to know how many times I called Johnny’s parents, I can easily go and find that info. Great. Check out the image below to see what it looks like. I have blurred out important information.
It might look a little crazy at first. Remember it is a record and a spreadsheet. I can sort by any column and I can of course search by hitting ctrl + F or command + F and typing in a student’s name.
See also: 5 new Google Forms features worth trying out
It has also been a handy bit of evidence when I need to get and administrator involved. They usually want to know if I have made a contact with someone at home. This here is my proof and tends to help build a case for more support from the counselor and administration.
Overall this works for me, I can access it from any computer/device with Interwebs and sharing it with colleagues is pretty easy as well. I like it! What do you use to keep track of your record of contacting a child’s home?
More from Tony here.
Also you should check out his ITBabble podcast.
See also: 5 Ways School Administrators Can Use Google Apps
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