June 27, 2016

Google Apps for Education GAFE: Forms

Google apps are awesome and one of my FAVES is Google Forms!  I love the ease and versatility of forms.  You can create a form for students, parents or even yourself to complete and you will end up with a spreadsheet of information and data.  You can even use the add-on Flubaroo and make the form self-grading!  Below is a list of a few ideas for using forms:

  • Back to school/Getting to know you activity
  • Student assessments
  • Rubrics
  • Exit tickets
  • Collecting parent info at Back to School Night
  • Give a survey and graph the results
  • Student reflections/evaluations, such as after a field trip
  • Parent feedback
  • Student reading records
  • Create a form/checklist for you to complete while assessing a small group or student
  • Documenting PD
  • and SO much more!
Today I will show you the basics of how to get started with the new Google Forms.  Be prepared to be amazed at how easy it is!  There are 2 ways to start creating a new form... Go to forms.google.com and click on the + to start a blank form.  You can also begin by opening your Google Drive and choosing New, then More, then Google Forms.

Next, type a title for your form in the upper left corner.  After you do so, it will automatically name your form in your Drive and will change the Untitled form text in both places on your form.

Now it's time to start adding questions or items to your form.  It's so easy... just click and type where it says Untitled Question.  Type your answer where it says Option 1.  Choose Add option to add more answer choices.  Automatically it begins with a multiple choice type question, but you can change this if you want.  Just choose the drop down menu arrow next to Multiple choice for more options. 

When you finish with the first question, click the + to add a new question.  You can also add a title and description, an image, a YouTube video or a section.

Now comes the fun part!  Let's customize the look of the form.  In the top right area of the page, choose the paint palette to change the color or theme of your form. If you click on the picture icon, there are tons of themes to choose from.  You can even upload your own photo to use at the top of the form.  Choose the "eye" to preview your form or choose the settings wheel to see more options. 

Next you'll need to set up where you want the responses to go when someone fills out your form.  Choose Responses at the top and click on the little green symbol.  I generally choose to create a new spreadsheet and leave the default name, which will be your title and the word (Responses), but you can change the name if you'd like.

You have just created your first form and you are ready to send it out!  Click on the Send button.  You have 3 choices here.  You can email it right from the form itself.  You can copy the link to your form to add to a website, email, or even a QR code.  This link can be shortened right there, too!  Or you can grab the embed code for a webpage.
I hope this tutorial helps you get started with Google Forms.  I know once you do, you will love it and wonder how you ever managed without it.  I would love to hear how you are using forms in your classroom.  Be sure to leave comments with your ideas.  Click {HERE} to download a pdf of the tutorial images above.

Thanks for stopping by!
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May 1, 2016

Comparing Class Quiz Games

Hi!  I am so excited to have joined the team at Virginia is for Teachers!  Be sure to check out and follow the blog and Facebook page for some great teaching tips and ideas. 

Today I want to share some awesome technology tools with you...

Class Quiz Games are a fun and engaging way to review for a test! This post compares 4 different games/assessment tools to help you choose the right one.

One of my favorite tools to share with teachers is class quiz games.  These are great for formative assessments and a good way to help students review before a test… like those SOLs that are coming soon!  There are several great ones out there in cyber land, each with different options and capabilities so I don’t really have a favorite.  It truly depends on your content and purpose in deciding which one is best.  I also like to change them up just to give students a variety.  Below is a quick overview of four quiz games and then a chart comparing them. 

Socrative:  This one has been around for a few years, so it’s an oldie but a goodie.  I like that it allows for several question types (multiple choice, true/false or short answer) and that quizzes can be projected and teacher paced or assigned for student paced.  When student paced, they can even skip a question and come back to it before submitting.  The team game mode with Space Race is a fun way for kids to review.  All students play on their own device and it randomly assigns them to teams.  One pro of Socrative is that it’s a great system when needing longer questions. 

Kahoot!:  Students love Kahoot!  This is more fast-paced as students only have a maximum of 30 seconds to answer and more points are awarded for correct quick responses.  Questions and answers do not show on the student device.  The questions are projected and students answer on their device by choosing the correct color block that corresponds to the answer.  It’s a competitive game since students see their rank among their peers as they play and the top 5 point leaders are shown after each question.  This game is only for multiple choice questions and works well with facts or quick computation, such as addition or multiplication facts. Team play is new and has just been added. I also love that you can search the public Kahoots and edit ones you find for your own needs. 

Quizizz:  Quizizz is a little newer on the scene and is very similar to Kahoot!  One main difference to Kahoot! is it can be teacher or student paced and you can set longer than 30 seconds for each question.  Another key difference is students see the questions and answers on their device so this game doesn’t have to be projected.  Questions can also be randomized.  Quizzes have the “homework” option which will keep games open for up to 2 weeks.  There are several options with this system including turning off the timer and leaderboard which encourages students to take time and not to race through a question. 

Plickers:  Plickers is a great alternative if you don’t have student devices available.  Each student gets a printed card with a QR type code displayed.  A question is projected and students hold up the card and rotate it in the correct direction for their multiple choice answer.  The teacher then uses a mobile device (phone or tablet) to scan the cards around the room and collect responses.  After scanning responses, the teacher shares a graph of the results for discussion. 

All of these quiz games are a fun and engaging way to review.  Below is a chart that compares them.  Click HERE to download the pdf version of the chart.

Class Quiz Games are a fun and engaging way to review for a test! This post compares 4 different games/assessment tools to help you choose the right one.

Have fun playing!
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