Interaction and Participation

Hacking Template Tab for ADI Science Lab

I have been exploring ways of using Google Tools to increase interaction and feedback in my distance learning classes. This is a cool way to collect and monitor student work, even if you are not teaching at a distance. I use Alice Keeler’s Template Tab. Here is how I modify it to work with Science Lab groups within the Argument Driven Inquiry Process.

PBS Learning Media

I have been a huge fan of PBS Learning Media since it’s Teacher Domain inception. This is the site has indexed top notch media to science topics and standards. Resources are easy to use, find and the perfect length to spice up any science presentation. With the latest morph into PBS Learning Media, there are new tools including the ability to add questions to quizzes and track student viewing. PBS Rocks!

Click here to learn about the Walrus Haul Out this fall. Use the code beetle697 to allow me to see your viewing responses and enter your participation in the grade book.

Video Quiz Sample
Screen shot of Video Quiz Sample

Interactive Nearpod Style

I have a personal challenge to use mainly free tools and resources that are licensed through the creative commons in my class. This allows me to openly share my resources and techniques. Nearpod is a new exception to this rule. It’s ability to allow me to quickly and easily add interaction and participation in my classes has inspired me to fork over the $.  When my students join me in a Nearpod. I push my media to their laptop or device. They can participate in the polls, quizzes, drawing activities, and discussions on their own screen.  They can see my slides and view the videos and websites as I cue them.

Its been interesting to watch their reactions to my controlling their screen. I don’t think they all like the intrusion into their “multitasking” habits. I love it, the reporting features are robust. I can see who has answered on the fly, if its correct and I can share anonymous responses by pushing them to the students screens. Here are some example screenshots of the back end. I do find it helpful to enter as a student on my iPad and present from the computer.

Screen Shot 2014-12-17 at 9.06.23 AM

Screen Shot 2014-12-17 at 2.58.11 PM

Screen Shot 2014-12-17 at 2.59.00 PM

Interact and Engage all Students with  is the latest tool in my virtual box of tricks. This is a fantastic way to engage absolutely every student in the class at one time.  It is an open source, super charged student response system. You can design multiple choice, true false, or open ended questions for students to respond to on their own device or computer. What makes this especially useful during a live video class is the fact that student can not see the question unless they look the teacher’s screen. The only thing the see are their choices for responding to the question. This prompts them to listen and look up before responding on their own device when they look down. With a lot of online tools my kids stare at their screens and forget to interact with everyone.

Like other systems, it scores the responses and displays instant feedback to the students. But here is the bonus fun, it scores them according to who answered the correct question first. Then it displays the leader board with the top 5 scores after each question. At the end of the game you can print a report.  You get a formative check of how well your students are doing on the questions posed. My students play anonymously and we don’t spend a lot of time logging in and remembering passwords.

You can also search a bank of public quizzes to duplicate and use as your own.This a free tool with no hook them into a premium account plot.

Since the first week I introduced this to my class, I have had at least one request a week to play Kahoot, “Can we play Kahoot today?

Teachers start at

Students log in at