During mid-February at Ohio’s educational technology conference, I learned about an awesome assessment tool that only requires the teacher to have a device: Plickers. While I am a proponent of getting students on devices as much as possible, I realize that not every school has access to enough devices to make this possible for all students every day. On top of that, throw in heavy state testing now, and all the devices you did have are now being used for the tests. So many teachers are left with only their device and a projector to use with students. I’ve been on the hunt for some great tools that a teacher can use with their students when they have limited access to devices.
Plickers definitely falls into this category.
Plickers is an assessment tool that only requires one device to use. You just sign up for a free account and enter your students. Plickers automatically assigns each student a number and a unique Plickers card. Teachers are required to print the reusable class set of cards. The cards look similar to QR codes (left), but they have very small numbers (the student’s assigned Plickers number) and A, B, C or D around each of the four sides. When prompted to answer a question, students hold up their card with their answer choice facing upright at the top of the card. Each student’s card looks different, and the letters are small enough that students won’t know which answer choice their peers have chosen.
The teacher can create questions from the web through the Plickers website or on the spot through the app. Then the teacher uses the Plickers app on their iOS or Android device when they are ready to collect students’ responses.
This is where the magic happens.
The teacher uses a single device to quickly scan each students card. The answers show up through the app (or online) in real time as they are scanned in, and entire class data can be seen as well. While the Plickers cards may look similar to QR codes, they scan much easier than QR codes. The teacher does not have to be right by a student to scan their card, and can scan the whole class with one sweeping motion. As the teacher scans a card, the student’s name shows up on the device to indicate their card has successfully been scanned.
That’s it. It’s that easy. Currently, you cannot export the answers, but you can access previous questions and students responses through the web or the app. This is a really great tool to give teachers instant data, incorporate some technology when classrooms have limited access to devices, and keep students engaged and participating throughout class.
If you have teachers that are timid about diving into technology head first, or classrooms that have little to no access to devices during testing season, I highly recommend giving Plickers a try. This could also be an easy tool to take a quick poll or get feedback from staff in your next staff meeting.
Have you tried Plickers before? What do you think?
Tech To You Later!
*The top image in this post is from plickers.com