As most of you know and maybe some of you are about to find out very soon, special educators have a daunting amount of paperwork to go along with all the other tasks we do on a daily basis. This paperwork is very important, tedious, and requires so so so much time that sometimes we don't have time to truly enjoy the joy we get from our jobs (the kids) because we are overworked and stressed.
I have tried several free trials of "IEP data collecting" apps and only find myself in awe that these companies think their product is worth the amount of money they charge underpaid teachers for their less than flexible product.
Then stepped in Google Docs - my true love (other than my husband, and my beloved Ipad, of course).
I use google docs for literally every ounce of data collection I have, I can create whatever kind of forms I want specific to each student and it spits out tons of graphs, spreadsheets, circle charts - I die!
First things first, you have to have a Gmail account. When you are signed into your account, click on the "Drive" option located at the top of the page.
When you get there, click on CREATE and then FORM from the drop down menu.
You will first have to choose a theme - my favorite is "Blue Birds," but you are certainly allowed to pick your own, then click OK. :-)
I usually title my forms specific to IEP goals. If a student has different goals for different subjects, I will separate them, unless the goals go together and I will be working on them at the same time.
In the description part, I write out the actual goal.
Here's the fun part - Google Docs literally allows you to create whatever question type you want.
First, I wanted to create a question that prompted for the date. Even though each submission has a time stamp, I like to do this just incase my Ipad died and I was away from a computer, so I could still input the data with the correct date.
For the question title, I simply typed "Date:"
and for the question type, I used the drop-down menu to select "date" which inputs another option, which includes the year and the time. For this purpose, I just selected "include year" but it would be up to you!
After I clicked down, here is what it looks like:
Here is another question I added:
Passage Reading Level question with a drop down menu, with three different choices to choose from (this can be as many as you want!)
When you are all finished creating your form, you will click SEND FORM and the box below will pop up.
Now, if you are sharing a student on your caseload, you may want to try to "Add collaborators" but they must have gmail as well to input information. You can also send them the "Link to share" and they can access the form anytime through this.
Here is what the form looks like when filling it out:
Isn't it lovely?!
Okay.. I know this is a long post, but hopefully informative.
Anytime you want to view your responses, you click on VIEW RESPONSES and a chart like this will pop up.
If you want to open your spreadsheet up into another program, such as Microsoft Excel (to create other data charts -- I WILL EXPLAIN THIS IN ANOTHER POST!)
Click on FILE > DOWNLOAD AS > MICROSOFT EXCEL
If you want to see some pretty graphs and such, you can click on RESPONSES > SUMMARY OF RESPONSES.
I hope you found this post useful!
Please feel free to e-mail me or leave a comment if you have any questions!
Fonts credited to: Kimberly Geswain and Luckyfrog's Lillypad