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Jo Richards' Design Narrative: Tweet without the Twitter

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Jo Richards
5 April 2016


2nd Year FdSc (level 5) students from a variety of land based courses, including animal management, agriculture, horticulture, arboriculture.  Approximately 65 in total located within a traditional lecture theatre space with a capacity of 120 students.  1 hour Personal research project lecture (seminar groups are held within section), recapping previous session that was covered by a colleague


FdSc Y2 all courses


Personal Research Project

Tutor: Jo Richards



Lesson Title:

Aims, Objectives, Hypotheses recap



Week No:


Group composition and any individual learning needs (consider differentiation, learning styles, initial assessment):

Up to 80 learners in total:

  • Mix of programmes including Animal Management, Equine, Hort, Agriculture and allied programmes


  • Mix of ages from 19 to mature learners of 40+


  • All have progressed to final year of programme so are capable of achieving but levels vary from 40-70%+ in proposal


  • Additional learning support for some students present for note taking


  • Some students use Dictaphone devices to record sessions


  • PP notes to be on Moodle before session (purposely not for this one due to nature of activities – but note added to assure this is intentional and will not detract from session)


  • Some AM students can become distracted and start relevant but separate conversations so need to use activities to ensure engagement


  • Some expected absences notified via PM

LP shared with LSA

General Aims (including reference to Learning Outcomes covered):

  • Recap plenary knowledge from previous set of sessions (as cover tutor last week due to HAU review)


  • Reinforce key aspects of aims, objectives, hypotheses added in as discrete session due to proposal feedback


Specific Learning Objectives - by the end of the session ALL learners will be able to:

  • Identify the purpose of a lit review


  • Work in a group to define aims, objectives and hypotheses


  • Identify some core aspects to each of the above


  • Have information to enable them to improve their proposal a/o/h for main project


and by the end of the session SOME learners may be able to:

  • Complete an action plan to enable them to improve their proposal a/o/h for main project


  • Support peers in improving their plans


Skills for Life / Transferable Skills developed (including reference to Basic / Key Skills covered):

  • Discussion; Writing; Verbal Communication


  • ILT – use of technology to complete tasks


  • Reflection


  • Planning / timing of workload


/ Tutor Activity

Learning Activity



Take register

Address issues of student lateness / non-attendance



Introduce Lesson Plan/ Learning Objectives

Opportunity to seek clarification / organise thoughts / notes for tasks



Tweet activity

Students to work in groups to prepare a series of ‘tweets’ to recap their learning from the last set of sessions and particularly the last session that was covered by as guest tutor due to HAU review


Timer video


Smart phone / other internet accessible devices


Tutor led discussion

Tutor led but discussion on previous encounters with aims / objectives/ hypotheses and where we are in the process and the importance of getting this session correct and that it can be developed whilst data may be ongoing




Round robin

Group task to define and explain key factors relating to aims / objectives and hypotheses. Output to be photographed for upload to Moodle






Action plan

Depending on depth gone into with Round robin this may be started in class or set as development task for seminars / in own time. Students to take learning and apply to their own work. Extension students to peer review and assist each other.


Mind maps



Q&A / next week

Opportunity to ask any questions and understanding of next week’s session plan



Timing’s are approximate and subject to change depending on engagement / value each task is offering to overall plan.

Extra content

Embedded Content


Paula Dumas
8:14am 9 April 2016 (Edited 8:15am 9 April 2016)

I enjoyed reading your 'cloud'. I liked how the lesson plan portion was structured using a table with clear timings, activities in brief and in detail, and the resources.

When it comes to assessing any implicit assumptions (as we're asked to do), there's some assumptions that the reader will already know what you're taking about. This includes the use of abbreviations and shortforms throughout (such as LP, LSA, PP, AM, PM, a/o/h, HAU) which could be written out the first time each is used. 

The main thing is that I'm left wondering what happened :) I want to know what the students did during those times alloted and the activities, including vitally whether they did leave with action plans that included input from their peers. To me, this read like more of a lesson plan than a narrative or story of: what you had planned for; what happened; what you had found by the end; and what you'd do next time. But I loved how clear of a lesson plan it was -- that definitely appealled to my own love of organisation!

Jo Richards
9:20am 9 April 2016

Thank you for your reply Paula, it seems that everything I typed after inserting 'Word' content has not been saved!!! Curses to the gods of technology (and bad me for not checking after the post...).  I unfortunately do not have the will to recreate all of the sections as per the template (chalk up a bad mark for this type of reflection) but to answer your queries - there was a definite split in the effectiveness of this task.  I would say all of them got there in the end but the animal management students with whom I have embedded Moodle based tasks in other sessions I deliver to them all yar and it is a typical approach from the team - were all over this task and had it nailed in seconds and they definitely saved it as they were keen to help others.  Students from the other sections (a much higher percentage of whom are more mature learners and perhaps stereotyping but less tied to social media?) took a long time to find the materials and engage.  Due to this I felt the task lost pace and focus overall and as an observed session this probably counted against me.  However it could be rgued that having overcome the barrier it would be more effective in future and perhaps the centrally saved output from the activity is of more value than the cost to achieve it.    For the majority of the students the action plan became the take home task with opportnity given at the atart of the next session to ask questions.  It was further suggested that the students formed support groups to offer support and feedback as their projects developed.

I think I would do this again - but I maybe need to sow the seed with a similar group in a smaller way earlier in the year - I made too much of an assumption that all of the students / departments were making similar use of the technology and it very much seems they are not.  there is also opportunity here to link with my wider college colleagues and share practice to enable the students to engage. 

Glossary of terms: LP - Lesson Plan, LSA - Learning support Assistant, PP - PowerPoint, AM - Animal Management, PM - ProMonitor (student traching software), a/o/h - Aims, Objectives, Hypotheses, HAU - Harper Adams University (our validating partner).


Paula Dumas
12:00pm 10 April 2016

Thanks Jo! I'm so sorry that Cloudworks lost half of your Cloud! You definitely answered my questions. It is so interesting to take a step back after watching an activity unfold and compare our original assumptions about the technology our students use and understand with what they then did.

Denise McDonough
6:11am 11 April 2016 (Edited 9:05pm 12 April 2016)

Hi Jo,

I admire your logical and clearly professional plan! Plenty of tasks and practice in an effective and well thought out process. It might be easy to take it as a supply teacher and get on with it. Especially the timing and clear objectives

I was a bit lost with the implicit expectation the reader would understand the codes and some of the abbreviatons so those would need a key of some kind.

You added the comment that you assumed that they all had the same level of technology and clearly even our group doesn't. I never used Twitter before. I am curious what went missing when you edited it. So sorry - I have had many tech hours of frustration over the first block trying to do the course strictly on mobile. Not going to happen. I often use a text file and copy and paste. It isn't fool proof though because it wasn't compatible with our TMA upload!


Jo Richards
9:47am 16 April 2016

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