Reading to my 2 year old daughter is one of my favourite things to do. In this short post, find out how I used Mote to create this awesome experience for my daughter!
With the busyness of life, I am often preoccupied with preparing dinner or one of the many other life chores, when I find my daughter turning the pages of her books, pretending to read on her own. She loves looking at the pictures and calling out the characters, animals, and colours she sees.
I thought there needed to be a way that my daughter could continue to read by herself and listen to the story being read to her. With the use of Mote, I came up with an idea to record myself reading her favourite stories. I first recorded two of her favourite books;
I Went Walking by Sue Williams
Noni the Pony by Allison Lester
Both these picture story books are quite short, so Mote works perfectly as I could record each story within the one Mote recording. To highlight the turn of the page, I rang some bells to let my daughter know when to turn the page while reading along.
The recordings were then downloaded as a QR Code, printed and added to the front of each book. Now when my daughter wants to read on her own, we are able to scan the QR Code using an old phone and she can listen to the Mote recording and read along on her own.
As this was a great success I will continue to use Mote to record some of her other favourite picture story books.
This idea can be used in the classroom to engage your students. They can listen to the Mote recording of their teacher to reinforce text and articulation within the story. You could also have students recording themselves and have them share their favourite stories with their classmates.
With longer stories, I suggest making several Mote recordings and having several QR Codes printed throughout the pages of the book as required.
There are so many ways you can use this idea in the classroom.
My name is Eleni Kyritsis, I am the Deputy Head of Junior School in Melbourne Australia, and I also work part time for Mote as the Community Leader. I love my job and everything that comes with it. Mote is a tool that I discovered while on maternity leave in 2020. When returning to work during the pandemic I loved how I was able to connect with students and provide meaningful feedback on their learning whilst they were learning from home. Now fast forward to 2022 I still love using Mote daily in the classroom. In this post I am going to share a day in the life of how I use Mote to support me as a working mum finding that work-life balance.
7:30am – Arrive at work
My role as Deputy Head is to inform teachers of any absentees and changes to the daily schedule. Through our school’s Learning Management System (LMS) I can verbally record the daily update using Mote’s MotePad and share and embed this directly into our Staff LMS page.
8:30am – Classes begin
Each morning I walk the corridors to say good morning to the students as they arrive. I have many conversations with students as well as teachers and some parents, so I find the Mote app on my phone so valuable as I can quickly record any reminders and to do items as Mote’s which I follow up with at a later time.
11:30am – Library Book recommendations
Students love reading at our school and love to share what books they have read with each other. In the library we have a loans computer for students to browse the books they can borrow. When students have read a book they can leave a recommendation by recording a Mote in the Library account. Once a week I go and share these using the QR code button and create a Bookmark. With the help of our Library technician we print these and place these inside the book cover for other students to explore and listen to the book recommendations from other students in our school. Student’s use an iPad from the Library to help scan and listen to Mote bookmark book recommendations.
12:30pm – Emails
I was observing a student whilst on yard duty and needed to follow up with their teacher at the end of lunch break. When composing the email in Gmail, I simply hit the Mote button and record my voice message of my observations and then send. This allows me to work efficiently and also the teacher listening to the recording. Mote within Gmail is one of my favourite features.
2:00pm – Year 6 Design Class
In my Design class, students are beginning a new project where they are exploring Sustainable Housing. I researched a range of websites that I would like the students to explore about the topic and shared these in Google Classroom. Using the Mote extension in Chrome I can create Sticky Motes with instructions on each of the websites to support students with their own research on these pages. Within Google Classroom, students can also use the Mote chrome extension to record a verbal comment for me.
3:30pm – Veggie Patch QR Motes
Our Year 5 students have created Mote QR Cards (similar to our Library bookmark recommendations) that we have added to each Veggie Patch with students recording what the plant is and when we should have a harvest. At student pick up at the end of the day, our parent community love scanning and hearing the students explain what the veggie patches are and what we are growing. These have become a great discussion for parents and students. I had
4pm – Administration tasks
In the afternoon I review and listen to the Motes I created throughout the day via the iOS app. I review these on my laptop and keep track of all conversations I had throughout the day or from meetings I attended.
4:30pm – Hometime
I hope you have enjoyed reading and seeing how I use Mote daily to support my productivity both in the classroom and with administration tasks.
I hope you have enjoyed reading how I use Mote throughout my day. Please share any tips or tricks with how you use Mote throughout your day.
I was delighted to be joined by two of our marvellous Mote Ambassadors – Brittany Horn and Nicole Reynolds – in a pop-up PD with Mote. They’re both awesome and deserve a follow!
In just 10 minutes, they generously shared over 10 brilliant examples of how Mote QR codes have had an amazing impact on accessibility, connection and more in their own learning communities and beyond!
Nicole generously shared lots of ideas in which she has creatively used audio QR codes with her staff and students.
Community Wide Appreciation with Voice!
Students can record for others – a great and simple way for young people to share admiration: for each other, teachers and parents.
Families/Room Parents – voice notes to express thanks for the awesome work of educators!
Other teachers/staff members – spread the love outside the classroom.
Administration Team – leave notes of encouragement and affirmation for your amazing team.
Media Center Coordinators ( book notes) – use your voice in a variety of ways here: reviews, thank you notes and more!
Instructional Coaches – praise your team for taking on a challenge and integrating technology in a purposeful way!
Audio Affirmations for Students
Greetings cards – whether it’s a birthday or something else worthy of celebrating: why not try adding your voice!
Awards and Certificates – everyone loves acknowledgement of hard work and achievement: level up your affirmation game by adding voice.
Extra, Extra – hear all about it!
Want more ideas from Nicole? Jump into the video here to find out more about how she and her community have used audio QR codes for:
Accessible stickers for student work
Notes in hallways
Notes on door
Brittany started by celebrating the impact of using voice to 10x notes that she might have left with sticky notes – as it really emphasizes ‘the personalization’ to help build connection.
In her district, Brittany runs sessions on Mote for her staff called ‘Holy GuacaMOTEly!’. You can find lots of info on how they have used QR codes and more by searching on socials and/or clicking here! It’s impossible not to be inspired – as show below by two of the teaching team that have benefitted from Mote QR codes, in both the receiving and creating!
The way that audio affirmations work for the community at NISD is utterly inspirational! If you’d like to bring this simple and powerful practice to your own school, you can access the template here.
Mote Ambassador Program
I am proud that both Nicole and Brittany are Mote Ambassadors! We’re always looking for more innovative educators to join the community. Find out more by visiting the community page on our website.
At the beginning of the school year, teachers and students can use Mote to assist in the classroom with getting to know you activities. Using Mote in Google Slides allows both teachers and students the ability to record themselves sharing various information directly onto the slide. In this video you will see a range of templates that can be downloaded from the Mote Learning Hub These templates allow teachers to share the Slides either individually or collaboratively with their class.
You can set up Digital Books within Google Slides for Foundation/Prep students giving them a space to insert photos and drawing places around the school then recording themselves explaining each of these places within the school. These can then be shared with families to show where they learn and play at school.
Hypermotes – Primary
Hypermotes are a new feature in Google Docs which allow you to create a clickable Hypermote within your document.
Some ways you can use this feature in the primary classroom include recording your voice on new words to help students with pronunciation or a definition. This supports all learners in your class by expanding student vocabulary. When learning or revising for spelling tasks, students can record themselves breaking words into syllables or sounds etc. This allows you as the teacher to hear and listen to students’ pronunciation and knowledge of spelling patterns/rules taught in the classroom.
Maths Assessment in Slides
Designing Maths Assessments in Google Slides with the help of Mote saves time in the classroom, whilst giving students confidence. When assessing students in the junior primary years it is difficult to really grasp an understanding of what they know in Maths due to their limited reading ability. With Mote, teachers can record themselves reading the question aloud allowing students to listen to the instructions and questions and then record their answers back for the teachers to hear. This saves time in the classroom and allows students to become independent learners.
Assessment & Exit Tickets with Google Forms
Using Mote to design assessments or exit tickets in Google Forms allows for questions to be recorded by teachers and listened to by your students. In self grading Google Forms, teachers can also record a Mote to provide students with instant personalized feedback.
Sticky motes allows teachers to leave voice instructions on any website. This is an amazing tool to use to introduce tasks for both in the classroom and home learning. While exploring the chosen website, students can listen to the embed teacher instructions multiple times whilst scrolling the page.
Mote is delighted to welcome Kim House as guest author for this post! Kim has been a primary school educator for 20 years, serving 12 years as a Technology Integration Specialist at the Bavarian International School in Munich, Germany. She is both a Google Certified Trainer and Coach, an Apple Distinguished Educator and chairperson for the ECIS Technology Innovation and Design Committee.
As an international school educator, Mote is one of the simplest and most powerful tools I can use to increase student engagement, understanding, and access to learning. International schools often have a high population of non-native English speakers and ELL students at various levels. Strategies we use to help ELL students and those needing learning assistance can also be powerful tools for any student! Mote allows teachers to make learning more accessible and also tap into students’ understanding whilst saving time. Win-win!
Here are my 6 reasons why Mote voice notes are an essential for international schools…
1. Translate and transcribe voice comments into 25 different languages 🌎
This is at the heart of why Mote is so effective for international school students. At its core, voice notes enable teachers to leave comments, feedback, and instructions that can be quickly transcribed and translated into 25 different languages. Hearing and seeing the text reinforces understanding. Learning becomes instantly accessible to everyone and is offered in multiple formats so students can choose what works best for them. Read John Hattie’s thoughts on feedback.
2. Make Google Classroom Assignments easy to access for everyone 🙌
Mote is embedded across Google Workspace and can be used in different products. Add voice instructions to your Classroom assignment instructions, posts, feedback and as part of the grading workflow. Voice notes provide scaffolding to ensure all students are clear on instructions and feedback. Using the translation features here really brings it home for ELL students.
3. Level up Creativity in Google Slides with Mote! 🥳
Students and teachers can add their voice to Slides.
Teachers using a shared slide deck can add voice to engage, explain and increase understanding.
Students can add voice to demonstrate learning and activate an alternative avenue of creativity. Students who prefer to explain orally have a pathway to show what they know.
4. Make your Google Forms phenomenal with voice responses! 🗣️
Yes, voice responses!!!
Imagine not only for foreign language classes but also for our EAL students or any student struggling with writing. Integrating audio into. form works especially well for more open-form questions.
For foreign language or EAL classes it could be used to assess fluency, pronunciation, understanding and comprehension. Quick, simple and effective– win-win!
5. Check engagementand start a conversation! 👋
Quickly see if students have listened to voice notes all in one place! Once a student has listened to a voice note you’ll see the status in the ‘My Activity’ area.
This is a great way to flag students you might want to remind or check in with in person. Students can also respond to your notes thereby starting a conversation about their learning.
Improving this feature all the time, it’s possible to filter by student – a great option for conferences!
“Mote is not only a tool for instant verbal feedback, it creates connection, builds rapport and decreases barriers for those students with reading difficulties or with English as a second language. Even better….it is a 2-way tool.”
Your students love hearing your voice – they’ve even told you that it helps them engage more deeply in their learning! Your dilemma is that they’re turning in physical work for you to have a look at and you still want to provide them meaningful Mote powered audio feedback…
With a simple template built in Google Slides, you can achieve the above. In no time, your students will be able to listen and act upon your verbal feedback.
Take a look at this short video to see how:
Access the following templates below to make your own copy
Mote is an ideal tool to increase accessibility to all classroom content with audio. Reading material in particular can be quickly supplemented with audio to provide an introduction, overview, context or even a read along for students as they explore the text.
The process of reading is often one that learners prefer to engage with an an offline environment. Reading a text passage on paper allows the learner to quickly mark up the content and engage with the text in a capacity that may not be possible in a digital space. Highlighting, circling and even drawings in the margin allow the learner to truly engage with the text.
But, how can we make this text more accessible to provide the level of support to help all learners navigate this space? Mote with QR Codes!
In 1:1 classrooms, whether students have mobile devices (iPad) or a Chromebook, both devices allow students to scan QR Codes. Consider the scenario where a learner has a reading (short story, DBQ, poem, primary source document, problem set) that they are going to read in an offline (paper) environment. Before printing off the original document, educators can create QR Codes with Mote that point directly to custom created audio to help guide the learner through the experience.
Watch the pop-up PD episode below as the Mote Education team explores this idea!