Good practice in using Textwall in a lecture

Some tips to make your use of textwall more successful!

Textwall in action by @smythkrs during ‪#hyeln12‬

Textwall in action by @smythkrs during ‪#hyeln12‬

Here are some tips that can make your use of textwall more successful:

1. Ask a challenging question.
Asking what people had for breakfast can be good for a laugh and a bit of an ice breaker (and makes for a great food wordle!), but for real learning benefits, pose a question that makes people curious to know other people's answers:
Eg How did you overcome xyz barriers? What would you do if...? Etc
Here's a scenario: A presenter asks a question and then proceeds to list the possible 'answers' before showing the textwall answers from the audience.

I would suggest that you ask the question, give people a minute or two to respond or consider your question, present on a related aspect of your topic, then bring the presentation naturally back to the answers that your audience has contributed. If there are few responses, your own answers can be presented instead. If there are lots of answers, you have an audience that are more engaged in your responses to their answers. So interact with the responses from the textwall and put aside time in your presentation to do this; this makes it a great engagement tool.

2. Focus on the responses
Click on a message and it will fill the screen. This allows you to direct audience focus on one response at a time if messages are coming in thick and fast. It also shows the audience that you are interested in what they are thinking when you use their responses as part of your session. Try to choose a few divergent views or answers to really stimulate discussion.

3. Follow up using textwall messages
You can download the messages and share these with learners - this can be a good starting point for reflection on what was covered during your presentation. Again, it shows learners that their responses do matter and that these can become user-generated material for learning.

4. Compare with previous
If you expect that you may have different responses between user groups, this can be interesting to present to your audience. Click on the Wordle button to present a snapshot summary of the responses. Use screencapture or download the Wordle to use in future sessions.

5. Summary and review
You can ask learners to send a summary of your lesson to the textwall at the end of a class and use this as a review session to start the following lesson.

Do you have other ideas or examples of how textwall can improve teaching and learning? Feel free to add your ideas here or contact us @textwall