Sunday, March 17, 2013

Lunch Project Days 6-10

I haven't forgotten the project, we have just been working through a bit of the drudgery. The first thing we had to do this week is get our survey and instructions created. I wrote the instructions intending for them to sound like the instructions students during our high stakes test. I was hoping the tone would convey to the students the survey was important and they would then take it more seriously.

Instructions to be read to the students taking the school lunch survey.

Thank you for participating in our lunch program study. The survey that will be handed out has a list lunch choices. These are actual lunch choices that have been given this year. You will look at all of the lunch choices and then pick your favorites.

You will assign your most favorite choice to #1, your second favorite choice to #2 and so on. When you have chosen your top ten favorite choices you are finished with the survey.

You must be silent from the time we hand out the survey until everyone is finished. If you or anyone in the room talks during the survey, it may become invalid and the whole groups’ surveys may be thrown away. Are there any questions?

At the top of the survey you need to write your grade on the line next to the word ‘Grade’.  I am going to hand out the survey now, please write ______(grade) as soon as you receive it. You may begin as soon as you write the grade number on your paper.

(Make sure you circulate the room and check that the correct grade is entered.) (If there is any talking during the survey, note what the speaker says so we can decide if the survey is compromised when you bring it back.)
The survey included all of the items that had been offered over the period we looked at. The students read the instructions and then handed out the surveys.

We discussed the number of surveys we needed to take to get a good 'sample'. Many of the students wanted to survey every student in the school. I explained how impractical it would to be survey all 360+ students. I convinced them that getting 20 surveys at each grade level would be enough, that is still 120! I think after having to go through the surveys they would agree.

One of the things I wanted the students who gave the survey to watch out for was students sharing their choices aloud. I really stressed to the students before they gave out the surveys the need to emphasize to the students they should not talk while the survey was being filled out. Interestingly, we actually had two classrooms where one or more students 'shared' what they were choosing during the survey. We decided to throw out those surveys and give another survey to a different class. 

We spent three days collecting the surveys, working around the schedules of each classroom. This week we will finish going through those surveys and on Wednesday the plan is to aggregate the datum.