Looking for a quick and easy way to collect formative assessment information from your students? Check out Plickers.
Similar to costly classroom response clickers, Plickers provides teachers with quick and timely feedback on classroom instruction without the cost. To use this tool, you just need the Plicker cards, available as a free download or a premade kit on Amazon, and the app. The app is available on both iOS and Android platforms.
Here’s how it works:
Each kid is given a card with a number on it. It is similar to a large QR code. For organizational purposes, it’s best to keep the card number consistent each time as the student’s assessment information will be accessed using this “ID” number.
Each card is labeled with letters on all four sides of the code. To share their answer, kids simply turn the card to reflect the correct multiple choice answer. So, for instance, if the answer to the question is A, the kids would turn the card so that the A is face up.
Teachers must create a question in the system by entering the question number and selecting the correct answer. You cannot view the question within the app, it must be on a separate sheet of paper or displayed on your projector.
To check student answers, the teacher opens the app and scans the codes with a quick sweep of the class similar to the way that one might scan a QR code. I was surprised with the accuracy of the application- most kids’ codes were picked up on the first sweep through the class with only a few to scan a second time. The application collects and displays student responses- either correct or incorrect for the teacher to see. With a glance, it is easy to see which kids have answered and which kids understand the given topics.
Teachers can create their assessments on the fly or you can tie it into an existing tool. I like to create PowerPoint files with daily quick checks so that I can display the question on the board and kids can respond. This is handy because I can reuse the assessments and I can go back to look at each question to see the specific skill or concept.
Kate Peila is a third grade teacher from Montana. She is passionate about integrating technology in the classroom to increase student engagement, improve lesson efficacy, and enhance classroom management. She is a content expert for Appolearning and she blogs at Purely Paperless.