Here’s a nifty new trick: Plickers.
Lakes CTE Department Chair Neil Lesinski learned about this techy, easy-to-use assessment tool / discussion starter while attending a leadership class at Harvard University over spring break. He demonstrated how it works to the Lakes BLT shortly after his return, and my response was, “Woah.”
It’s a little tough to explain how it works in writing, but I’ll give it a shot…
- You sign up for a free Plickers account at Plickers.com.
- You download the Plickers app to your device.
- You print off cards with unique designs. Each student gets a different card. The cards look like this (note the letters and numbers on the border of the design):
- You use Plickers.com to project a multiple choice question on the screen in your classroom. (It’s sort of like Polleverywhere.com, for those of you who have used that tool before.)
- Students change the orientation of their card so that the letter they think represents the correct answer — option A or B or C or D — is on top.
- You use your device to scan their cards.
- Plickers records their answers in the form of a graph on the screen. Again, a little like Polleverywhere.com.
- You proceed to lead the class in a discussion based on their responses and / or assess their understanding of the concept.
Here’s what might make it better than Polleverywhere:
- Students don’t need their phones.
- Student responses are anonymous to other students in class, but they are not anonymous to you. That means you can see what students have mastered the content and what students might need some help.
If none of what I just wrote made sense, then check out these videos.
This one shows how it actually works in a classroom:
This one explains how it works and how you can use it in your classroom: