Fully engaging students is one of the most difficult tasks we teachers face, especially with the many distractions in the classroom. Years ago we had to worry about students passing notes, making faces at each other, and even a paper airplane or two. Now we have the covert electronic version of these thanks to cell phones, iPads, and computers.
Well, instead of banning these devices, how about embracing them? (Yes, you read correctly – embrace them!) And thanks to Socrative.com we can turn those devices (whether it is a cell phone, tablet, or computer) into a student clicker where students respond right there electronically. Check out the screen shots:
So, the room number doesn’t mean your school classroom number, but rather a unique number assigned from Socrative, this way each teacher can control who takes their “quizzes” based on whom they give their number to. Create the quizzes ahead of time to create great reviews of history, reading comprehension and vocabulary practice, and just about any type of information you want to review. Formats include multiple choice, true/false, yes/no, and even short answer to make the student’s device a fully engaging device.
Beyond quizzes created ahead of time, teachers can also use Socrative during the classroom discussion, too. The company has set up a real-time user interface where teachers can monitor students’ responses as they come in while the class is being taught, creating a true “clicker” responder. But, my favorite feature, is that Socrative allows for group work. Check out this screen shot where the teacher is monitoring each group’s progress:
So, while it is a bit intimidating to ask students to openly bring their devices into your instructional time, remember, they are probably doing it anyway, so we might as well put those devices to work!