The big buzzword that I am hearing a lot about is something called “Backchannel”. As a presenter you know that people are talk in the background about your presentation. Why not use that power for good and embrace that is going on the dark back corners of the room. While researching this topic I found a website called “TodaysMeet”. I was introduced to this site through another favorite site of mine called “Edmodo”, maybe you have heard of it 🙂 TodaysMeet allows you to quickly gather information from people in the room. Of course there are many other ways to poll and/or backchannel during a presentation or during class but TodaysMeet offers a quick, simple, and temporary way to do that. You have to option to “delete” the backchannel room after two hours, eight hours, 12 hours, one day, one week, one month, or one year. As you are presenting you can see what people are saying about your presentation. You can answer questions from someone who is either too shy to ask or if the room is too large to see a hand go up. Of course you can do this on Twitter as well but I like that it is not permanently on the web for ever! You can post a topic and have it delete after one hour. As the teacher/presenter you can always print out the transcript of the backchannel and make adjustments the next time you are presenting.
Let’s see how simple it is to create a TodaysMeet backchannel:
1) go to http://www.todaysmeet.com
2) create a “room name”, make sure the room URL has a green checkmark, copy the room URL, set the length of the room, and click “create your room”
3) have the students / participants go to the room, then have them type their name, and click “join”
4) Have to student / participate type in their message and/or question then click “say”. Similar to Twitter, TodaysMeet is a microblogging site that only allows the user to post their comments in 140 characters or less. It really makes you think before you post 🙂
6) Finally you will notice three links at the bottom of the “Listen” side. First you will see a shorten URL to give out to your students and/or post on social media. Next you will see “Transcript” and “Projector”. These allow you to either show the results on a projector screen or allow you to archive the comments by either printing them out or copy/paste into another application.
I hope you learn a lot from the backchannel! See you next time.