Bryce Honsinger, a grade 6 teacher at Harriet Tubman PS in St. Catharines, ON, talks about how Brightspace saves him time and helps him engage with his digital-native students.
My name is Bryce Honsinger. I’m a grade six teacher at Harriet Tubman Elementary in St. Catherines Ontario. Doug Melville, May 1992, came into my history class, grade 10, as Baron Von Schlieffen and acted out the exact Von Schlieffen plan from 1900. From that moment on, I wanted to be a teacher.
Bryce has been using Brightspace in his class since 2015.
Hey Bryce, what do you like about using Brightspace?
I really like the fact that once I build it and I set things up, my content stays, and so that when I go to teach the same grade or I need resources in a future year that are going to be similar, I have them at my fingertips. So I plan every week, but then I also build my pages for the next week through Brightspace.
The number one thing that my children and I appreciate is the fact that my day plans, my whole program is now digital. That’s what they embrace, they’ve grown up with technology. It’s almost a slap in the face to give them a pencil-paper task. They want to produce, they want to do things digitally, they want to access.
Any particular tools you like to use?
I like to use ePortfolio in there. So, if I take a group of children to do guided reading, what I can do is I can actually record it on my phone, their reading, file it in and then I’ll have it all stacked in a portfolio with inside Brightspace, so I have an online digital portfolio of their work. So if I need to go back and make a genuine assessment, which we always do for reporting, I have all that electronic material saved there through that platform. A little bit of time pre-planning sets you up for success down the line.
What would you tell a teacher who hasn’t tried Brightspace yet?
I would just say if you’re going to invest the time in Brightspace, you’ll have a platform that enables you to have a very efficient, 21st-century classroom, where the children can access what they need at the time that they need it.
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