If you’ve heard about Artificial Intelligence (AI), likely you know how hard it’s going to be to authenticate independent student writing. But did you also know that you can unleash the unique power of Artificial Intelligence to save you valuable teacher time? AI will save you hours on those everyday administrative writing tasks!
Writing from scratch is the WORST. I usually spend at least 15-20 minutes just staring at my blank screen wondering where to start. Enter AI. I just type a request like “Write a parent email” in the search bar and voilà, I’ve got a nicely structured email I can edit for my own purposes and save as a template for future emails.
I’ve been comparing ChatGPT with the Magic Write Feature in the Pro Version of Canva for 5 teacher administrative writing tasks. While I prefer Canva for report card comments, ChatGPT was my favorite for parent emails, thank you notes, field trip cover letters, and curriculum research.
At this point, the Magic Write feature is available only on the paid Canva Pro Version while ChatGPT is free. So, let’s take a tour to see how Artificial Intelligence will save you time and frustration!
5 Ways Artificial Intelligence Saves you Teacher Time
1. Response to Parent Emails
These are almost always about a student problem, so tone goes a long way to diffusing emotions and moving forward. I searched “response to parent email about student misbehavior.”
Chat GPT started off with “Thank you for reaching out to me regarding [student’s name]’s recent behavior in class. I understand how important it is to address any concerns or issues that may arise and I appreciate your open communication with me.”
I like this ChatGPT opener. A LOT. It’s polite and acknowledges the issue without being accusatory. The rest of this email from ChatGPT directly addressed the behavior issue while maintaining the same polite professional tone.
Canva wasn’t quite so warm with its opening line. “I understand your concern about your student’s recent behavior in class. It is important to us that all of our students feel safe and respected in our classroom and we take any disruption of the learning environment seriously.”
The rest of the Canva email was very short with little appreciation or concern for parent or child.
2. Report Card Comments
We were required to write report card comments EVERY quarter for EVERY student. How is the world am I supposed to come up with individual comments that sound genuine, especially when students and parents start comparing? Which we all know they do.
Enter AI. So much better than searching Google only to turn up generic comment lists.
I yielded some good basic comments from both platforms when searching for “10 Report Card Comments.” For even better comments, refine your search to “10 Report Card Comments for Students who Struggle with Academics” or “10 Report Card Comments for students who Overcame Behavior Struggles.”
Canva’s results were shorter and had a positive tone to them, nodding to Canva’s strength in the graphic design and sales realm.
ChatGPT comments were longer with some good ideas, but with a bit of an accusatory tone that would need to be adjusted for a report card. I always like to cast comments in a positive tone. So I might rewrite this ChatGPT comment “Shows a lack of self-control and struggles with appropriate behavior in a group setting” to “Needs to develop strategies to improve self-control in group settings.” Any improvement gets mentioned in emails home and on the next report card.
3. Thank you Notes for Gifts
I truly struggle with writing warm but short thank-you notes. I thought that both ChatGPT and Canva were a bit over the top “mushy,” but it’s still better than what I write.
4. Field Trip/Project Letters
ChatGPT was more comprehensive with its result. Save it as a template for future field trips.
5. Curriculum Research
This was pretty amazing to me. I’m currently writing a series of reading passages on Chinese Religion. I’ve already done a ton of research so I know the subject. I wanted to see what AI would come up with.
This is not at all Canva’s strong suit so I’ll just leave it there.
However, ChatGPT was pretty awesome. I love the ability to type in a topic or question and quickly have a good overview without searching through Google pages. While the results were more of a summary, I just kept digging deeper with more narrowly focused questions. I actually uncovered some interesting new information that I’ll fact check with other sources.
I particularly like ChatGPT’s ability to generate lists. Like “10 major Chinese Folk gods and descriptions” or “Best Art Nouveau Sites in Prague.” If you want more than a list of names, add the “and descriptions” to your search.
Searching through ChatGPT felt a bit like the deep hole I dive into clicking through hyperlinks on Wikipedia. But where Wikipedia and other academic sources can quickly become heavy and deep, Chat GPT was definitely on level for my middle school resources.
ChatGPT certainly gains a spot in my research arsenal. The only downside is that you’ll need to copy and paste each query and response to a Google Doc or Microsoft Word document for editing.
The Future of Artificial Intelligence is Now
ChatGPT can be definitely be hard to access as it’s so popular. It’s worth the wait. And I’ve read that they’re rapidly adding servers to meet demand.
Let’s circle back, shall we, to students submitting AI generated writing assignments. ChatGPT has announced that they are launching a service through their parent, OpenAI, that detects the likelihood of a writing sample being generated via AI. Not much different really than using Turnitin or Grammarly to check for plagiarism.
Definitely have some fun unleashing the unique power of Artificial Intelligence to save you valuable teacher time. AI is not going away, so embrace it to save you writing frustration and give you back free nights and weekends!
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