Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Resources to Support Formative Assessment

Blended Learning, Flipped, 1 to 1, and Online Learning


Formative assessments are powerful learning checkpoints for teachers and students. Formative assessments are part of the learning process and can be enhanced with a variety of different #EdTech resources. This post will introduce you to a variety of different formative assessment tools. The tools will connect to a range of different learning styles and activities. We recommend taking your time to explore and experiment.


Many of these resources have activities / assessments that are public. You can copy and modify as needed . I recommend starting with some of the existing lessons before jumping in on your own. Why recreate the wheel?

Video Assessment Tools
  • EdPuzzle
    The easiest way to engage your students with videos. pick a video, add your magical touch and track your students' understanding.
    EdPuzzle has some nice channels and lessons: https://edpuzzle.com/search
  • TED Ed
    Use engaging videos on TED-Ed to create customized lessons. You can use, tweak, or completely redo any lesson featured on TED-Ed, or create lessons from scratch
    Ted Ed has some great lessons already created: http://ed.ted.com/lessons
  • Playposit
    Teachers begin with any online video (screencasts, Khan Academy, TED, etc.) and transform what is traditionally passive content into an active experience for students, with time-embedded activities.
    Playposit has a range of “bulbs” you can copy and edit: https://www.playposit.com/panel/lessons
Game-Based Assessment Tools
  • Kahoot
    A bit more teacher centered, but the students get very excited to do this. They do sometimes focus more on speed than accuracy. You can search and find existing public Kahoots that you can modify for you students. 
  • Quizizz
    Quizizz allows you to create and play awesome multiplayer quiz games, both in class and at home. 
  • Socrative
    Socrative has both traditional assessment tools and some game based resources.
Assessment / Presentation Tools
  • Poll Everywhere for Google Slides
    Incorporate live polling directly into your Google Slides. Create new Poll Everywhere polls or insert one of your old favorites, all without leaving Google Slides. 
  • Peardeck
    With Pear Deck, bring interactive, engaging slide presentations to your classroom. Real-time formative assessments and discussions enhance understanding. 
  • Nearpod
    Nearpod is a classroom tool for teachers to engage students with interactive lessons. 
More Formative Tools
  • Formative
    A platform for real-time formative assessments + a FREE next-generation student response system. 
  • Google Forms
    Flubaroo or Superquiz to auto grade quizzes.
    Flubaroo | Super Quiz
  • Socrative
    Socrative empowers you to engage and assess your students as learning happens. Through the use of real-time questioning, result aggregation, and visualization, you have instant insight into levels of understanding so you can use class time to better collaborate and grow as a community of learners. 
  • Mastery Manager
    The online testing shows some potential for both formative and summative assessments. 
  • ExitTicket
    ExitTicket is a student response system, designed by teachers to achieve one simple idea: Accelerate student achievement. 
  • Google Classroom Polls
    Polling feature in Google Classroom.
  • Quizlet Live
    Quizlet Live is an in-class, team-based learning game. Students work together to correctly match a Quizlet set's terms and definitions. The first team to match 12 in a row wins!

More Assessment Resources
Recharge Learning Assessment Resource Site with resources and ideas connected to assessment.



Monday, March 21, 2016

Google Docs Quick Create and Save to Drive

Ideas come to us at any time, and the Quick Create extension makes it easy to create a Google Doc, Sheet, Presentation, Drawing, or Form at any time when logged into Chrome. After installing, users can create as much as they want, and the Google Doc, Sheet, Presentation, Drawing, or Form will save automatically in their Google Drives.

Save to Google Drive is an extension that helps users save web content directly to their Drives. Users can save web pages, documents, images, audio, and video by right clicking and selecting ‘Save to Google Drive.’
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Both extensions increase productivity and make it easy to create, save, and archive everything we need!

Click here to install the Google Docs Quick Create
Click here to install Save to Google Driv
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Monday, March 14, 2016

The Zaption Chrome App - Interactive Video Learning Experiences

“YouTube is more than just cat videos,” says Charlie Stigler (Zaption founder). “With Zaption any teacher can tap into all the great educational content online and quickly create video lessons that are more engaging and meaningful.”

The power of YouTube as a learning tool is no secret to educators around the world, but it isn't always easy to know if  students engage in a video when it is shared.
There are many great tools that can help a teacher use YouTube videos more effectively.  Zaption is one of these tools that connects to Google Classroom.

Why use Zaption?
  • Build quizzes into the video experience.
  • Great tool for 1 to 1.
  • Supports blended learning.
  • Supports flipped learning.
  • Supports problem based learning.
  • Allows for differentiated learning.
  • Live discussions.
  • Analytics for instructors.
  • Works with a variety of online video sites including YouTube and Vimeo.
  • Zaption has its own video library that is ready to use. 
Click here to access and install the Zaption Chrome App.

Description of the Chrome App
  • Turn online videos into interactive learning experiences that engage learners and track progress. 
  • Get more from YouTube! Zaption’s interactive videos engage students and track their progress.
  • Create your own video lessons in minutes by adding images, text, quizzes, and discussions to existing videos from YouTube or Vimeo. Or copy and customize high-quality, ready-to-use lessons from Zaption’s growing curriculum library. 
  • Interactive video lessons can be shared privately with a simple link or shared in Gooogle Classroom – making Zaption perfect for blended learning, flipped classrooms, and online classes. 
  • Zaption is optimized for Chrome and works great on laptops, Chromebooks, and Android devices. Students can also access their lessons via our native iPhone and iPad app. 
  • Whether students access their video lessons in the classroom or on the go, Zaption’s award-winning analytics track all student activity and responses, giving instructors just the right amount of actionable data to personalize instruction. 
  • With Zaption, teachers can finally see what students are thinking as they watch a video!

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Documentation of Observations Made Easy

Documenting observations is now as easy as hitting submit on a Google Form. It's made easy with docAppender - yet another useful Form Add-on. 

What is it? It's just that . . . the power to append Google Form submissions to the end of a specific Google Doc.
Here are some ideas to use docAppender:
  • Keep a Google Document per student where you log a running record of observations around a particular skill or for behavior monitoring.
  • Great way for administrators to document teacher classroom observations. Administrator can share the Doc with the teacher.
  • Exit slips to easily measure individual student’s grasp of the lesson taught.


Here is how to get started with docAppender:
  1. Create a folder and title according to your needs (i.e., Class Period, Student Docs, Teachers, etc.).
  2. In the folder create:
    • a doc for EACH class period, student, or teacher
    • a new Form
  3. On the Form:
    • Make the first question:  "What class period are you in? or What is your name?"  or Teacher's Name" The question should be  a multiple choice question.  You don't need to add  the “choices,”  the Add-on  will pull the names of the files you created.  
    • Add any additional questions you need to meet  your needs.
    • Install docAppender from the Add-on menu.
  4. Once you install the Add-on (you will need to agree to a couple of things, then go up to Add-ons and choose DocAppender and follow the steps:
    • Step 1: Target Doc Folder - Select "choose a different folder" and pick the folder that you created in Step 1.  
    • Step 2: Doc-picker Question - Choose the multiple choice question that will determine which document(s) to append with the Form submissions.  In essence,  you are saying:  when I select student "A" put the Form submission at the end of  document "X".
    • Choose "Save a populate selected question."  Now you will see the “choices” matching the Docs you created in the target folder.  If you add another Doc to the targeted folder, docAppender auto-refreshes hourly and on each Form submit.
    • The next screen will list all the questions on the Form.  Choose the ones you want the Add-on to pull and populate on the targeted Doc.  
    • On that same screen you will need to choose how you want the information to populate in the Document.  There are three  options. Experiment with them to see which you like best.
    • That’s it!  The Form will populate the documents each time there is a form submitted.


I’m sure you can think of many ways to use this useful Add-on, docAppender, created by our friends from New Visions Cloud Lab.


Friday, March 11, 2016

Quizizz - Class Quiz Game

Students love classroom quiz games.  And teachers love them for formative assessment and test review.  Quizizz is similar to Kahoot (another free quiz platform) but with a few key differences.  Like Kahoot, the teacher chooses a quiz to begin.  A five digit came code is provided.  Players point their browser to join.quizizz.com and input the game code along with their names.   Kahoot is designed to show multiple choice questions on a screen and students respond by clicking buttons on their devices that corresponds to the answers they want to choose.  Quizizz takes a different approach.  Students see questions and answer options on their own screens.  The question order is randomized for each student.  No need to wait for other players to answer to continue to the the next one.
So, Quizizz is player-paced while Kahoot’s pace is determined by the teacher or host. This is the major difference and can be a benefit or a drawback. If you want to pause after each question, then Kahoot is better. The class can stop and discuss after each question, immediately addressing misconceptions. With Quizizz, players zip through questions at their own pace, limiting all discussion to after all questions have been answered.

When you host a Quizizz game, you get to see a real-time view of the game's results. Quizizz shows the total number of questions that have been answered correctly and incorrectly. Quizizz also displays real-time progress bars for each player. At a glance you can see how many questions a player has got right, answered incorrectly, and have left to answer.


Since Quizizz does not rely on the whole class seeing questions projected on a big screen, Quizizz games have the "homework" option which can keep the quiz open for up to two weeks. With this option, Quizizz games can be assigned as homework or be part of a learning station or center.

Quizizz provides eight game settings to give the host quite a bit of control over the quiz settings. When you click Play or Homework, you can change the Question and Game Settings. While having a leaderboard and question timer stokes competition, you can turn these off for when you want students to slow down. Deactivating the leaderboard and timer can also be good for students who might feel too much anxiety when competing.

Teachers can view reports to see currently running quizzes and completed quizzes. You can also download a color coded Excel spreadsheet with the data.

You can start a quiz from scratch or copy and edit an existing quiz from their library of quizzes. Each question must be multiple choice and have between two and four possible answers and only one correct answer. Each question can have one photo, which is displayed behind the question’s text. Currently, responses are limited to text.

When you edit, you can teleport questions from other quizzes right into your current quiz. This can be quite a time saver.





Thursday, March 10, 2016

Chrome Music Labs - Time to Get Creative

Recently Google Chrome released a  site called Chrome Music Lab to support Music in Our Schools Month. It is really an incredible example of creative design. The site is a blend of fun and learning in an interactive interface. There are a variety of different interactives that users can experiment with. If you look closely you can even see some of the science connected to sound and music. 
Music is for everyone. So this year for Music In Our Schools month, we wanted to make learning music a bit more accessible to everyone by using technology that’s open to everyone: the web. Chrome Music Lab is a collection of experiments that let anyone, at any age, explore how music works. They're collaborations between musicians and coders, all built with the freely available Web Audio API. These experiments are just a start. Check out each experiment to find open-source code you can use to build your own. - From the Site
There are 12 different "experiments" represented by different boxes on the main site page. Each of the experiments has several layers. Here are a few basic tips for using the site:

  1. Your first click on the box will give you the name of the experiment.
  2. Click a second time will open up the interactive portion of the experiment.
  3. Each of the experiments is a little different. So be sure to click on the different options so you don't miss something. Click, click and click some more. 
    For example:
    The Rhythm Experiment lets you set patterns of percussion by marking spots on the bottom of the screen. If you click on the arrows on the side you will get a different set of musicians with different instruments. Press play after you set it up and you have your own composition. The Bongo's and Cowbells are a favorite. (Last one in the experiment.)
    The Spectrogram is a single screen that allows you to visualize the sounds a variety of different objects make. You can even turn on your microphone and visualize your singing voice. 

Watch the video below to learn a little more before visiting the site. 
Visit the site: Chrome Music Lab


Monday, March 7, 2016

Add-On of the Week: Save to Doc

It can be challenging to read information in a spreadsheet. Save to Doc is a Google Sheet Add-on that transforms any spreadsheet into a Google Doc and automatically saves it to your Google Drive. After installing the Add-on, users have the option to select all or some of the content in a spreadsheet, add column headings in order to keep the information organized, and add page breaks between different rows.

Since data collected through a Google Form populates in a Google Sheet, the Save to Doc Add-on is a wonderful resource for teachers who create and utilize assessments and surveys using Google Forms in their classrooms.


Click here to install Save to Doc
Click here to see the Add-on in action