google classroom

Fluco Toolbox: Quizizz

Welcome to Fluco Toolbox, a series of posts that showcases potential edtech tools for the Fluvanna County classroom. Each post will discuss the tool, the type of problems it can help solve, and how it can be used in the classroom. If you’re a Fluvanna County staff member and want to learn more about using the tool in your own classroom, please schedule to see your ITRT and we will develop professional development based on your needs. If you’ve stumbled upon this post and you’re not part of the district, no worries! Feel free to use the information provided to jumpstart your own research.

Have you ever found yourself in love with an online quiz program, but wished there was a program out there that didn’t rely on how fast students can answer? What about one that allowed students to take a quiz at home?

Today’s Fluco Toolbox tool is: Quizizz

First, the basics:

Name: Quizizz
URL: quizizz.com
Cost: FREE
Problem this tool solves: Create quizzes for students where being the fastest to answer is not a factor. Assign quizzes to be taken later at home. Integrates with Google Classroom, Edmodo, and Remind.

Chances are, you already use some kind of online quiz program in your classroom. It is likely that you have used it quite a bit, and you have noticed a few things – unable to take the quiz outside of the classroom, first to answer correctly wins points, etc. If you’re looking for something new, then give Quizizz a try!

Quizizz gives a different spin to the quiz game. Students are not forced to beat the clock to answer correctly and get the most points. Instead, Quizizz takes a self-guided approach. Quizizz also allows teachers to assign quizzes that are taken outside of the school day. Because of this feature, questions and answer choices are shown on every screen, not just the teacher’s. Teachers can gather live data and reports for assessment. There’s even a fun Meme creator for questions.

First, create an account. Google users can sign up with their Google accounts. Everyone else must sign up with email. Once an account has been created, you’ll be taken to your dashboard. The dashboard is where you’ll search for new quizzes, create your own, and locate resources.

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If you’ve used Kahoot! before, the layout and setup of new quizzes are largely the same. You’ll find that Quizizz only offers multiple choice quiz types, whereas Kahoot! offers more. Remix public quizzes on both sites. Create your own memes to support correct/incorrect answers on Quizizz. Quizizz also allows both the question and answer choices to be seen on the student’s screen. Quizizz works with Google Classroom. Quizizz also allows quizzes to be assigned as homework and can be completed on any device. Kahoot! does allow a similar feature, but it’s limited only to the mobile app.

First, let’s create a quiz. This can be done by searching the public database and remixing an existing quiz or starting entirely from scratch. Give the new quiz a name, and include an image if you wish. Then you’ll be taken to the quiz editor.

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Quizizz has a recently released a new quiz editor, which makes creation even easier! Users can now select more than one correct answer, include images in questions, and include a 5th option for answer choices.

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To create a question, fill out the information required. At least 2 answer options are needed for each question. Don’t forget to check out some of the cool options! Make more than one answer correct, add a 5th correct choice, change the time limit, and add an image to the answers. On the right side of the screen, you’ll see a preview of the created question as it would appear for students. This updates in real time.

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Save the current question, and then add as many questions as needed. One of my favorite parts of Quizizz is the ability to search other quizzes for questions to use. Teachers never like to reinvent the wheel if they don’t have to! This feature allows you to search other existing quizzes, or limit to only your own for questions to use in a quiz. Once you find a question to use, all you have to do is add it to your quiz. You can then edit the question.

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After all questions have been added or created, simply click “Finish Quiz”. Before doing this, decide if you would like the quiz to be public or private. You’ll see the button just below the name of the question on the page that shows all of the questions for the quiz. You’ll need to provide some details about who the quiz is suitable for, and then it’s considered published.

Once a quiz has been published, it’s visible to everyone, unless you chose to make it private. There are two options to distribute quizzes to students – Play Live and Homework. Playing live means playing the game in real time. Students complete the quiz, but on their own devices. Teachers have a variety of options to customize gameplay, such as shuffling questions, giving points for faster answers, letting students see the leaderboard, etc. When a game is in progress, students see both the question and answer choices on their screens. There’s also the option to give the quiz as homework. Students can take the quiz at home until the quiz deadline. Once the deadline hits, it will no longer available.

Teachers decide between Play Live and Homework based on the goals to be accomplished. Live works well for in-class work and assessments. Homework is awesome for out of class assignments or for students who may be at home sick. One benefit of Homework is that the link to the game can be shared with Google Classroom, Edmodo, or Remind without students needing a join code to play.

When all is said and done, quiz data can be downloaded as an Excel spreadsheet. The data will show the students for each quiz, the questions correct, incorrect, and not attempted.

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When it comes down to it, Quizizz is a fantastic tool that’s only getting better as time goes on. As with any other quizzing tool, use it when the tool works best for the students and curriculum being taught at the moment.

[Resources]

Minecraft & the Ideal School, Day 2

When you let your imagination run free, you’re sure to come up with some amazing ideas. That’s exactly what some of my students are doing with the Ideal School project.

Day 2 began with students picking up where they left off. Many of them had completed half of the work with the 3 different Padlets. They spent some time today working on their School Design questions, which many enjoyed, and of course, some got distracted with all of their ideas. There was definitely some great discussion between students about the facilities they would offer, and how they would design their schools.

Once work was completed on all 3 Padlets, students were able to begin Task 4- Sketching their School Design. Prior to the class meeting, I had modified this section of my original lesson plan. I wanted students to be able to messy sketch and just get an idea of what would be in their schools and where it would be located. I didn’t want them to have to worry about carefully plotting the design layout just yet. I had made my own samples of a messy sketch and a good sketch to share with them in Google Classroom. My samples only show a small section of a school building.

This is where many students ended class. They were laying out the messy sketch designs. Some will have a school with multiple floors, and others will have a single level school. I even had some students want to come down during dismissal time to continue working on their sketches. This is perfectly fine by me, and I love that they are eager to keep working outside of class time. Students will be able to move on to the second sketch when they show me their completed messy sketch and I make sure that the requirements for the school are met. They will not get to the end of the project, only to be told they are missing something.

Overall, day 2 went well, but I think that was mostly because I spent time before the class tweaking the lesson plan again so that it was more specific, and really got students to put some thought into their work. Originally I just had them graphing their sketch with all measurements and such, but I realized that this was not a good idea because they would have had no idea how the overall sketch of the school should look. I felt that this could lead to mistakes and frustration. I also added into the lesson that the messy sketch needed my approval before the good sketch so that I could make sure that all required pieces were included.

This revision led to me creating my own examples of both the good sketch and the messy sketch. I wanted students to see a model so that it would be clearer to them, and many did appreciate it. I am really hoping that the graph version turns out well, because I have so many students who struggle with this when it comes to Minecraft. They have trouble creating their design on graph paper so that it transfers easily into Minecraft.

I am certain that my changes to Day 2’s part of the lesson made the difference in how the activity proceeded. Day 3 is meant to be a continuation of Day 2, and I expect most students to finish the messy sketch and be working on their good graph copy. Below, you can see the work from Day 2 from some of the students:

Very much looking forward to Day 3 next week. I am looking forward to seeing what the students come up with for their ideal schools!

Reflection: Minecraft & the Ideal School

I was recently tasked by one of the FMS administrators to design an enrichment activity for students involving Minecraft. This activity would be worked on once a week during the Genius Hour slot. I would end up with students 30 minutes each week, and the students would be selected as candidates by administration. Students would have final say in an interest meeting- if they didn’t wish to participate, they didn’t have to do so.

I love Minecraft (which you’ve seen from reading this blog if you are a repeat visitor), but I didn’t want to just sit the kids down to play. I wanted them to be challenged by a problem, so I set out to research. I ended up finding various projects on the Ideal School, so I decided to give the project a Minecraft twist.

The final version ended up with a few parts:

  • Part 1- Discuss issues in today’s schools and brainstorm ideas for structure of the school day, learning and lessons, and ideas for school facility.
  • Part 2- Draft a design of the school on graph paper
  • Part 3- Use Minecraft to create a model of the ideal school
  • Part 4- Complete a series of questions to provide information about the Ideal School
  • Part 5- Present results to administration

Today was the first day for our group to meet thanks to unfortunate timing of snow days. Students logged into their computers and joined the Google Classroom. I had displayed the class code on the projector. Once students were in the classroom, I gave them an overview of the project and all the steps that would be completed.

We first began by discussing the issues that they felt kids today faced in schools. I got some really good answers, and wrote them on the board as the kids took turns speaking. I had answers like:

  • lack of educational tools (calculators, books, etc)
  • not all schools have enrichment programs
  • lack of engaging learning

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Students were then directed to view the Google Classroom. I had created 3 tasks to begin with that focused on Part 1 of the project. Each task was designed to be completed in Padlet, which I have used in the past and loved. Students were able to each answer the question in one location. They could also see what their classmates were writing. I gave a quick overview of how to create a post on the Padlet. Students were asked to use their first name for the title, and then use the space to answer the questions on each Padlet.

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While they worked, I observed and asked questions about their plans, sometimes playing devil’s advocate, but mostly just to hear their ideas and thoughts. For example, through discussion one student realized that the way he set up his school year would give students a break in January and February, avoiding some of the potential snow days.

As students finished each Padlet, they marked the assignment as done in Google Classroom. Because we are limited on time, not all work was finished today. Students were told that they would finish this work the next time we met. However, they also have the option to work on the remaining pieces outside of class on their own time. Some students said they would do it, others said no to that idea.

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I am looking forward to seeing what the next class meeting will bring, and what kind of designs will develop when these students begin working with graph paper. Eventually, I will share the lesson plan here as a resource. It will need to be tweaked as the project is completed.

Minecraft: Cityscapers is a Go!

Yesterday, I held the second meeting of Minecraft: Cityscapers. I have changed things around this year with running a club in general. I took a max of 20 kids, due to space and licensing issues, but also because it makes management and grouping a lot easier. I had students fill out interest forms, and then drew names from a bucket, taking 20 students. I knew there would be many unhappy students, but with my distance from the school, once a week is all I can really do for meetings.

This year, I have also developed more of a curriculum and lesson. I knew I would need general lessons before we started on the main goal of the club, which is to build a gigantic city. I prepared a Google Classroom for this task. I wrote up a basic lesson format for club meetings. It’s not strict or lengthy, but it is flexible and follows a set pattern:

  • Take attendance
  • Review previous week
  • Lesson
  • Google Classroom instructions
  • Minecraft
  • Google Classroom reflection question

I planned out my basic introduction for the first meeting, which was similar to that of my workshops – build a realistic home. I wanted to see building skills. We wouldn’t really start anything new that meeting because it would be hectic enough getting everything started and going.

Well, I was certainly right. Things did not go as planned, and they were rough. Because I didn’t assign the students seats right off, I couldn’t log them into their computers. Instead, I waited until they arrived to log in. That wasn’t a problem, but the issue came signing into Minecraft. For whatever reason, the school computers have issues signing into an account. It seems to get worse after school lets out. We avoided this issue last year with a shared account, since so many students were in the club and were coming every other week.

That issue probably created more chaos than I would have liked. We did what we could, but only 10 of the students were able to be on at a time because the rest of the accounts wouldn’t log in. It was not a happy time, but we made it through. I had written down where each student had sat, so I knew I’d be able to log them in before the club meeting the next time and hopefully avoid this issue, just as I had last year.

In addition, I had a couple of students who wanted to test my expectations. I wasn’t happy, but knew I’d need to stick to my guns on this one. After the meeting, I developed a Code of Honor for the club. It’s basically just a fancy title for the club expectations, and the students sign at the bottom. It lists the consequences of not following, and repeatedly not following means being kicked out of the club. I don’t want to have to ever do it, but I want the students to know that they have consequences for their actions.

I did my usual planning for the next lesson, and began laying out the activities for the topic of the meeting: color theory. The day of the meeting, I decided to change the room we had been using. I had been using a lab, the same from last year’s club. While the layout of the computers was nice, it lacked a projector and a board to write on. I switched to a different lab instead so that I could project my work, and have the white board just in case.

With all of those things in place, I started the second meeting. Things went much more smoothly this time around. We took the attendance, I went over the Code of Honor, and then we settled in to work. I was amazing that the students stayed on task so well, and they worked very hard. We were able to pretty much finish everything we had started that day. Some of the students asked if they could free build sometime, so I have decided to work that into our meetings as well.

Check out some of our work from yesterday:

When we don’t have club days, I leave the server open to the students. Only about 4 students have personal accounts, and they like to get on and build. This is fine with me. I logged in last night to check on the day’s work and to take images for documentation. One of the students happened to be on, and he wanted to show me his work. He told me his plans and ideas. Everything came from his imagination, and he thought it was easy for anyone to do. He soon had to log off, and so I took screenshots of the things that had been built on free time. Our chat gave me a glimpse into the student’s head, and if anything were to ever arise, there are always chat logs kept on the server.

I am now thinking ahead to the next meeting. I am thinking about starting shapes, but I also think I want to explore color some more, and so may also work with color palette selection to add to what they’ve already done. I will think some more on it before deciding for certain.

In the meantime, check out some of the free build work:

HyperDoc Resource: Google Classroom PD

This is the hyperdoc I mentioned in my previous post on failing. It’s okay though because I fixed it and am now ready to share it with others who offer professional development to staff.

Name: Creating the Right Google Classroom for Your Class
Description: This hyperdoc is done with the Hero’s Journey template. It encourages teachers to explore first, and the mentor section is a demonstration that teachers can follow along with. Teachers have the chance to set up their classroom and have access to resources on ways to use it right away.

I have added two sections to this template. The first is a Reflection piece, where I have space for a survey to be inserted. The second is Hero’s Backpack, which was a space where I added more video resources for participants to refer back to after the session has ended. This was a request from my staff. If you feel that one or both of these sections do not suit your needs, feel free to remove them.

The only link that you will need to insert is a link to your own Padlet. This section is clearly marked in the document. You will also want to change the wording of parts of the document that refer to ITRTs. These are our tech resource folks. Please fill in with whatever role assists teachers with technology.

This hyperdoc session can be done in 2 separate class sessions of 1 hour each, or as one 2 hour long session. It cannot be completed in 1 hour.

Download Here

Feedback is appreciated. @tisinaction on Twitter or comment here!

 

HyperDoc Fail

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I seem to be writing about failing a lot lately, but I’ve learned so much from my failure. I have the mindset of “fail foward”. It really does put a new perspective on failure and mistakes. I don’t feel like some horrible person anymore for making mistakes. I recognize my mistake and then immediately reflect on what went wrong and how I could fix the issue so it doesn’t occur again. If it does occur again, then there’s more reflection. It’s changed the way I do things this year for sure. I’m certain that being a stubborn person when I truly want to do something also helps.

I’ve written about hyperdocs before, and even shared a resource. Yesterday I presented a professional development session on Google Classroom. I had developed my hyperdoc based on the “hero’s journey” template. It had taken some time, and I had a gut feeling that it wasn’t completely finished yesterday, but couldn’t figure out why. I figured it out pretty quickly at the PD session though, thanks to my participants reminding me.

Here’s what happened:

The session was set up to let them explore ways to use Classroom first. The next section was a whole class bit. I had forgotten to put in a part where I demonstrated setting up Classroom, and having them do it alongside me. Instead, I only had discussion for the problems teachers may face and how to solve them. Argh it seems so obvious now! Thankfully my participants reigned me in and asked for me to do it. I was happy to oblige. I’m pretty flexible when it comes to my PD sessions, and prefer to adapt on the fly to the needs of the participants.

Of course, having left out that one section meant we didn’t get to finish completing the hyperdoc, but trying to do a proper introduction on Google Classroom and get teachers up and running with it definitely takes more than an hour. I would definitely love to run the session longer or in multiple parts, and will most likely do that in the future. Multiple parts is more feasible though because so many staff already have a hard enough time staying after school for an hour, so extending that wouldn’t be beneficial to them.

Since my reflection on my failure, I have since changed the hyperdoc to reflect what should have been there all along, and am recommending that it be used over 2 class sessions, or even in a class of 1.5 -2 hours. Staff would not feel rushed to complete everything. I will soon be sharing the hyperdoc in my blog, so if you want to assist your staff in learning about Google Classroom, it’ll be worth a look!

Positive Post Friday: 10/28/16

It’s Friday and that means it’s time for another Positive Post Friday!

Fridays mark the end of the work week. Fridays mark the start of the weekend. Fridays should end the week on a positive note. Therefore, I’m going to share 5 positive things that happened this week:

  1. This is not educational and happened last weekend. I got to go back to my hometown and visit with my family and my 3 favorite kiddos. I made sure it was kept secret from the kids, and it was well worth it!
  2. I have successfully split my game designer club into two groups, which will allow me to give each student more feedback and spend more time 1:1 with them.
  3. I have been working with the economics/marketing teacher again this week, and the students have had some fantastic thoughts about potential solutions to the problem that has been presented to them about student voices in social media. I can’t wait to see what they create.
  4. I made quite a few connections at the last game designers meeting. So many of my kids like Pokemon or Minecraft, so I can easily bring that up from time to time as we build relationships.
  5. I was able to complete another PD Google Classroom course, this time on using Skype in the Classroom.

Your turn: Share your Positive Post Friday.

Until next Friday! Have a great weekend!