Hyperdocs have allowed me to personalize the learning experience for my students by giving them the keys to drive on their own inquiry based journey. Before creating hyperdocs I was planning our journey in a doc with links to resources that I wanted to share with students. I was in control, and we all did everything together at the same time because we were working from a lesson plan document that I kept to myself. By repackaging this plan and handing it over to the students in hyperdoc format I was able to change the entire dynamic of my class.
The students were now in the driver’s seat and in control of their own pace, spending as much time as they needed to spend on something and deciding when to move on. Putting the students in control has also allowed me to let them have a choice in what they will learn and how they will learn it, which has increased student engagement tremendously. The influence of student interest became very clear to me while working on a hyperdoc about plastics and their environmental impact in my media class.
I have used this hyperdoc two times with two different groups of students. The first class was interested in video production and our course veered towards producing commercials and public service announcements to raise awareness about the harm that one time use plastics are doing to our ecosystem. The second class was made up of makers and tinkerers. They were far more interested in making new things out of once used plastic, giving it a new life as a broom, shopping bag, or bracelet. Gone are the days of teaching the same lesson, in the same way, class after class. Hyperdoc: Plastic Paradise
A carefully crafted hyperdoc can take many forms, allowing me to lay out a path before my students that can take their learning to multiple destinations based on their interests rather than accepting information as I present it to them.
Hyperdocs can easily be modified or updated as new discoveries are made, which allows me to present my students with current information that is relevant to their own lives. I can create a hyper-linked text set that allows students to learn about content through multiple perspectives. With Hyperdocs we don’t have to get our information from a single source that can become outdated, like a textbook. The world is changing at a rapid pace, and textbooks can not always keep up.
Hyperdocs have also changed my role in the classroom; personalizing the learning of the students. Putting the learning in the hands of the students has freed me to be a part of their learning in a very different way; having conversations about learning, discussing ideas about creation and joining the class by commenting on shared digital content. I am really enjoying the way that my interactions with students have changed. Our conversations about learning are taking place one on one, rather than as a whole class address. I am no longer the only person that sees their work. This has had a big impact on the quality of what my students produce, because they care far more about what their friends think about what they have done. Now that their work has gone public it seems to be more meaningful to them and hyperdocs were the vehicle that brought us to this new level of collaborative learning.
By putting the road map for our learning in the student’s hands, I have become a passenger on their journey. They are no longer sitting in the backseat, staring blankly out the window and asking, “Are we there yet?” With my lesson plan as the road map and the hyperdoc as the vehicle, student learning has become a series of epic road trips. When was the last time anyone said that about a textbook.
Resources for Planning Your Own Hyperdoc Roadtrip:
- Hyperdoc Resources:
- Three Paths to Hyperdoc Awesomeness
- Extreme Pedagogy Makeover Using Multimedia Text Sets and Hyperdocs
- Teachers Give Teachers
- The Hyperdoc Handbook (pre-order: fill out this form to get on the list)
- Hyperdocs! Need I Say More?
- How-To Hyperdoc
- My Presentation on Hyperdocs: Taking Your Lessons to the Next Level.
Images: Photographs by Unsplash