Technology Teaching Tools are short, online, asynchronous modules highlighting a technology teaching tool along with relevant pedagogical implementation strategies. Some of the CIRT Technology Tools discussed below rely on freeware downloads. Prior to utilizing these technologies, you are encouraged to understand the potential risks associated with freeware; see the article "Why Free Software Downloads Aren't Always Safe" for an overview of key considerations.
Plickers is a powerfully simple tool that lets teachers collect real-time formative assessment data without the need for student devices. Plickers requires the use of printed answer cards for each student. Teachers can use the same set (or print out multiples of the same set) of cards across the classes. Plickers will let you assign cards to students in each class, so you might have, for example, six #1 cards assigned to six different students. Since they're not in the same class period at the same time, the #1 card will only be read as one individual student -- the one associated with that particular class period the poll question is planned for.
Plickers can be used in a variety of ways. Some ideas include the following:
Live Responses - Many teachers project questions and answer choices on the board from the Live View tab of the website, give students a designated thinking time to problem-solve, and then countdown to a "show cards!" moment. Live View will update with student results in real-time, indicating which students' responses have been captured with a checkmark next to their names. Teachers can also choose to reveal which answer(s) were correct with the "Show Answer" button and even review class data from the "Graph" tab.
Instantaneous Feedback - Use Plickers for quick checks for understanding to know whether your students are understanding big concepts and mastering key skills.
Critical Thinking – Plickers engages ALL students in critical thinking. It gives all students the chance to participate and engage in learning without feeling self-conscious. This format allows students to use their skills in a game-type setting.
Assessments – Instructors have the opportunity to give pop quizzes and have them grading immediately. There is no concern for cheating or passing of questions/answers as the questions can be quickly edited.
Attendance – Taking attendance is quick and easy with the tool and there is no fear of absentee responses nor signing in for another as each student has their own card.
How do you utilize this technology in your classroom?
Please share your thoughts, ideas and suggestions for utilizing this technology to foster effective teaching and learning.
Use the Compact Layout for single column (left|right) display.