Student participation systems are real time electronic interactions between students and teachers using remote control devices known as clickers. They are also known as student response systems. Any wireless remote device will serve as a participation system. Students will use the system to respond to questions, giving the teacher instant responses which can be displayed for the class to see as graphs and charts etc.
These systems have many advantages such as encouraging active learning, involvement, instant feedback, and question driven instruction.
Any subject area can use these systems as they allow true/false, multiple choice, and short response answers. Teachers can also make sure they use open-ended questions that can encourage discussion.
These systems will also help students with high-stakes testing as they can get used to taking tests that use multiple choice answers and learn test taking skills.
SurveyMonkey is an online survey/polling tool. It has both a free and a "pro" package that requires a paid membership.
The website explains the process on its homepage as create, collect, analyze. It seems simple enough to use for basic, informal surveys in a classroom but unless a teacher plans on using SurveyMonkey on a daily basis, the pro package might not be worth it. That leaves the free package for those who only plan on using the service sporadically. It means limited access to the features which are:
- Up to 10 questions per survey.
- Up to 100 responses per survey.
- Data can be collected weblink, email, and facebook.
- 15 question types.
- 15 pre set themes.
- Real time results.
Teachers and students have performance based assessments. Teachers use them to evaluate students learning, and administrators use them to evaluate teacher performance. Performance based assessments focus on work done opposed to tests taken. Portfolios can be used to assess work done.
Portfolios can be in physical or digital form. Digital portfolios allow for constant editing and updating, which is essential in a fast paced world.
A teachers portfolio can include examples of student work and projects, teaching evaluations, lesson plans, and personal educatinal background.
By using student partiticpation systems, such as SurveyMonkey and Zoomerang, or school provided technology, teachers can get real time feedback from students which encouraging discussion and preparing students for high stakes testing.