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Thursday, December 27, 2018

Best of 2018 - Top 5 Choices for Making Multimedia Quizzes

This week is a vacation week for the vast majority of readers of this blog. As I do at this time every year, I'm going to republish some of the most popular posts of 2018. Here's one from March.

Over the years I have tried and written reviews of dozens of tools that teachers can use to create multimedia quizzes. But at the end of the day there is just a handful of tools that I consistently think of when it is time to make a quiz myself. Those tools are included in the following chart. Links to video tutorials for each tool are included in the chart.


Click here if you cannot see the embedded chart.

A few points about the items in the chart:
  • Formative supports embedding media from third parties. That means that you could include an embedded audio file from a source like Vocaroo or Anchor.fm. 
  • Vizia responses land in a spreadsheet or CSV file of your choosing. 
  • If you're wondering why I didn't include Kahoot or programs like it, I put Kahoot in the category of "game" and not something I would use for an assessment that would go into my gradebook. 

How to Make Your Own Emojis - And How to Use Them in a Lesson

During the summer Tony Vincent helped me see emojis as more than just annoying symbols that people use in text messages and social media posts. He did that with a slick graphic that he created and shared on Twitter. In the graphic, seen here, he created a game in which students have to decipher school terms based on the emojis displayed. If you want to create a similar activity, you can do so by using emojis that are built into Google Docs or by creating your own emojis with this simple tool that I demonstrate in the video embedded below.


And here's a video to show you how to add emojis to Google Docs.

Best of 2018 - Free Hands-on STEM Lesson Plans

This week is a vacation week for the vast majority of readers of this blog. As I do at this time every year, I'm going to republish some of the most popular post of 2018. Here's one from February.

"Hacking STEM" was one of the initiatives that Microsoft was heavily promoting at the BETT Show last month. I asked a few Microsoft employees what "hacking STEM" meant. They all replied with explanations that centered on the idea of providing teachers with hands-on STEM lessons and projects that can be done without having to spend much money, if any, on physical materials. One of the many examples that Microsoft had on display to represent their hacking STEM projects was the homemade wave machine pictured in this blog post. You can find directions for that project here (link opens PDF).

Microsoft's Hacking STEM Library is divided into activities that take multiple days to complete and activities that can be completed in one day. All of the activities in the Hacking STEM Library include detailed directions, materials lists including places to acquire materials, and lesson objectives. The homemade wave machine project is an example of a one-day project. This lesson on harnessing electricity to communicate is an example of a multiple day project.

Best of 2018 - How to Create a Bingo Board With Google Sheets

This week is a vacation week for the vast majority of readers of this blog.  As I do at this time every year, I'm going to republish some of the most popular posts of 2018. Here's one from February.

Flippity is one of my favorite Google Sheets Add-ons because it gives you direct access to sixteen templates that you can use to create games, progress trackers, and random name selectors. One of Flippity's most popular templates, the Bingo template, was recently updated to allow you to include pictures in your Bingo games.

Flippity's Bingo template is easy to follow. Just the complete the steps listed here and you're ready to publish your game. You can print game cards to distribute to your students or you can have them play online.

It is important to note that in order to use images in the Flippity Bingo template the images must be hosted online and publicly accessible. A host like Flickr is ideal for this purpose. Google Drive doesn't work for this purpose. Likewise, any site that blocks hotlinking will not work for this purpose.