First Day Using Poll-Everywhere – 2 out of 3 Ain’t Bad

Today was the first time that I used Poll Everywhere (or @PE on twitter) in the classroom. I wrote about Poll Everywhere earlier in an article: “Poll Everywhere – a free/cheap Alternative to Polling Hardware.”

In two of my classes it was a striking success! In one (the one about which I was mot worried) it was more… problematic. However, I was so happy with the results that I ended up purchasing a one year membership with moderating powers (that can help with my… “challenging” class). I also had two classes in which there were technical difficulties not having to do with the program – in one the projector was broken and the other, we were in a room with no cell phone reception (and no computers save the one for the teacher).

My first job was to teach the students how to use the material. So I created a simple multiple choice question and taught them how to respond on that.

Clearly, my students have no taste in film  – but they did get the hang of the tools.

Next, I decided to use it as a “back channel” for running commentary while we read an article about “Why we study history.” The students respectfully comment throughout – and even answered each others’ questions (like what abbreviations they were using).

I also used it in my AP Art History Class to vote on whether or not an object was art. Here is how they responded to Duchamp’s ‘Fountain’

As you can see, most of them said “no” (a surprise to me as I thought it would be “yes”)

Overall, the experience was positive. The classes that tried it and succeeded did amazingly well! They were engaged, interested, and genuinely focused. Heck, my third period class didn’t even attempt to pack up before the bell rang (and a couple asked if they could stay “just a bit longer.”).

Now, with my new moderator tools, I do think that even the ‘challenging’ class will be a bit more meaningful.

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About Jennifer Carey

My name is Jennifer Carey and I am a student and educator of the human condition. I have long studied history, trained in archaeology, and found a passion in the field of education. As a long-time lover of technology (my father bought our family our first Apple IIe when I was three), I love technology and what it can bring to the classroom. I have taught at various Universities for many years as well as educating gifted teenagers through the Johns Hopkins program, the Center for Talented Youth. I am currently the Director of Educational Technology at the Ransom Everglades School (a secular independent school) in Miami, Fl. I also have a few educational podcasts on iTunes from my days teaching at TCU: The Ancient City of Rome, Classical Archaeology (2008), Classical Archaeology (2009), Introduction to Classical Myth, and Ancient Eats. They’re enhanced (so you get the PowerPoints along with the vocal), but please excuse the poor audio editing. Feel free to Email Me or follow me on twitter.
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5 Responses to First Day Using Poll-Everywhere – 2 out of 3 Ain’t Bad

  1. First, it was Cesar Romero that played the Joker in the 60s and he was the best. Secondly, I am so impressed with the cutting edge material you are covering in your classes. I really do believe students need a teacher and guide on how to use available technologies. I’m not surprised this lesson was a great success. On a different note, I must admit I had to clutch my pearls at the harsh language used, “Heck, my third period class.” Did you really need to use the “H” word? Mercy! :)

  2. sheetsk says:

    Give them another chance, it was only the second! Don’t take away their privilages until at least the third day of school :)

  3. Pingback: How I’m Using my iPad as a Teaching Tool « Indiana Jen

  4. Pingback: Preparing for my Conference Talk – Cell Phones, From Enemy to Asset in the Classroom « Indiana Jen

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