Today, I did my first online poll with students using http://polleverywhere.com. I actually created it last week when I wrote my lesson plan and administered it today. It was awesome! The kids seemed to enjoy taking out their forbidden phones and actually using them to participate in class.
If you haven’t heard, Poll Everywhere is a FREE service teachers can use to generate a number for students to text (SMS message) in open-response or multiple choice answers with their mobile devices. It also gives you several options for displaying the answers in real time, including a PowerPoint slide.
After introducing a lesson on domain and range to my Pre-Calculus students, I asked them to provide a real-life example of a function with its domain and range included in the answer. As you can see from the word cloud above that I created from their submissions, the kids came up with all types of examples.
Here are some of my favorites:
- “How many girls you have depends on many shoes you have”
- “The time I can sleep at home is dependent on the time I game online. Domain is the time I game and the Range is the time I sleep.”
- “(domain)The more you text =(range) the faster you get “
- “(Domain) How many kids you have => (range)how much food you need to buy ” < –(ain’t that the truth, lol!)
I always love doing activities like this where I get to see what’s really on my kids’ minds. I also like the teachable moments that come up when the wrong answer is given. Rather than panic when I see a bunch of wrong answers on the big screen, I simply take a moment to ask (or tell) the class why a given answer is a little off target. It always turns out to be a great use of our time. I plan on doing this activity again tomorrow using Twitter and the hashtag #mrsbprecalchat. I’ll share a live feed of the answers on my projection screen using http://visibletweets.com, a super-easy and super-cute Twitter visualizer. I will definitely let you know how it goes!
Another fun find for me today was the new word cloud tool I used to create the graphic for this post! I am a wordle girl, and have been for a long time. Today, I noticed that Poll Everywhere had an option for you to take your poll responses and make a word cloud out of them. This is when I discovered Tagul and Tagxedo! They are both like Wordle on steroids–seeming to offer way more options than Wordle in terms of colors, fonts, shapes and lots more fun stuff. I used Tagxedo instead of Tagul today because it did not require you to login. I can think of a million ways to use it in class…here’s a slideshow I found to give you 52 ideas!