weRead

This is the home screen to be used by teachers. Here we see a list of classes that the teacher is assigned to, one of which is starting in five minutes! The number of classes shown here is a typical number that teachers would be responsible for.

In most cases, it will be multiple instances of the same class, set at different times of day, or different days of the week.

This is the classroom screen, where the majority of activities will take place. Teachers and students will enter the class similarly to a chatroom, and the teacher will control when class begins and ends using the switch in the upper right, and present lessons to the class via webcam or other media prepared ahead of time.

When the class period ends, the room stays open for students to collaborate and ask questions.

The chat area below controls a number of options for conducting class. The teacher may call upon one or more students to speak to the group, review their messages for comments or questions, create workgroups, and talk selectively to those groups as needed.

The system is planned around classes starting and stopping at predetermined times, but control ultimately rests with the teacher. On this screen, we see that the teacher has chosen to not end class automatically, and the class is currently running five minutes over. While it is not a good practice to go over time on a regular basis, this gives the teacher more flexibility.

I developed this site map to show the primary pages that teachers and students will use, as well as the supporting pages needed to make them possible. I also identified Lesson Planning, Grades, and Assignments as areas for further development, as they are topics that are equally complex to the one I'm solving here, and deserve attention outside the scope of this project.

A basic flowchart documenting the normal flow of class. It walks through selecting a lesson deck, typing an introduction, and deciding when to start class. The teacher can then gauge how the students are responding to the material, and adjust the presentation accordingly. This kind of real time adjustment is only possible because of the way classes are structured in weRead. The ability for teachers to evaluate the class's understanding is the piece that is missing from many online learning platforms.

Ben is one of the personas I created based on the interviews I had with teachers who have taught online classes in the past. His students have access to online collaboration tools through their school's online learning platform, but they prefer to use a patchwork of tools they are used to using in their personal life, such as email and facebook.