Have you ever felt confused by the plethora of tech tools and apps available to teachers in this online teaching era we find ourselves in? I was always eager to try out any of the latest apps in the market with the genuine intention of improving the learning experience for my students.
However, I soon realized that the saying ‘Too many cooks spoil the broth’ holds good for a reason. While most of the apps available are excellent, the time taken to learn and navigate new apps myself and then get my students familiarized with it was time we just did not have 😦
I have consciously and mindfully decided to be faithful to the few apps that have served me and my students well over time for a variety of purposes – as tools of expression and collaboration.
2 reasons I decided to add Nearpod to my list of apps to use
- The first and most important feature – it is completely free for educators!
- Teachers can
- use the available lessons as they are
- customize the lessons and activities to suit their need and
- create their own lessons from scratch if required.
In this post I will share some of the ways to effectively use Nearpod.
Nearpod is a free interactive resource that offers the following –
1. A library of ready to use resources
The Nearpod Library has an amazing collection of free to use resources – for any subject and grade. Just choose the one appropriate to your class, check the preview and customize if required and then add to your lessons
2. Lessons and activities that teachers can customise and combine for their own lessons
First, choose the option to create a new lesson
Then choose to add content – which could be information / facts / videos you want to share with your students
Following this you could include an activity for students to complete to check their understanding.
Students especially enjoy these activities
– Time to climb – where they choose an animated character and climb a mountain as they answer questions correctly – it’s a race to the peak!
– Matching pairs in a memory game
-The collaboration board serves as a reflection space where the class voice becomes visible
Sharing a lesson I created on International mindedness using both the content and activities feature of Nearpod. As you will see from the images – I first added some content for students to understand what is international mindedness, then asked them open ended questions about what we all share in common and what is unique to us, followed by a collaboration board where they reflected on how they can develop this trait
The link to the activity is also shared below –
The Nearpod library also has an amazing collection of SEL resources. I have tried a few of them (I messages, My values) – very interactive and well designed activities
3. Formative assessments / Exit tickets
A range of assessments are available for different subjects, again these can be used as is or customized. I find these a very engaging way for student understanding to be assessed – takes away the stress or fear from the word assessment.
Sharing an exit ticket activity I created to assess student understanding of a math concept – Properties of numbers. The report generated shows me how the students performed.