Technology Jungle Gym (4 of 6): Class Response Systems

Class Response systems offer teachers the unique ability to get instant feedback from students through various types of assessments and questioning.  On the flip side, these systems offer students instant assurance or confirmation of their own learning or answers to questions posed in class or on a formal assessment.  Many teachers who use them, say it makes their student always be on-task, listening attentively, focusing on the learning they are doing or the teaching that is taking place before them.  The classroom response system also provide students and teachers a different way to assess, respond/answer than the typical ways used.  This mix is good and can help students who may otherwise be hesitant to answer, ask question, or even participate.

We have both SMART Response and eIntruction’s CPS.  Both have their pros and cons.  We’ll save that for another time.

Here are some ways teachers may use the systems:
(Note, both these systems can be used in anonymous mode (teacher and students do not know how user answered) and user-tracked modes (teacher and also students may see how others answered questions))

  • Test-taking – formal, written and oral, assessments
  • Quick assessment through oral questioning (Do you understand? Yes or No; True/False; Any Questions?)
  • Critique, Comment, or Poll questions – works of art, student work (allows class to assess work)
If you are lucky enough to have one of these in your classroom; think about what you most want to know from your students.  You could use these classroom response systems to help you teach better and help them learn better.  When used effectively, the newness and the gimmicky-nature will pass and your class could truly be more present in their learning knowing they will be sharing what is in their brain at all times.  

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