Friday, April 13, 2012

Using CPS Verbal Engage Questions and ActivInspire Expresspoll for Formative Assessments

When teachers ask students questions in class without the use of Student Response Systems such as CPS or ActivExpressions, do they receive an accurate assessment of whether or not the students truly understand what was covered in class? Student response systems allow students to remain anonymous and therefore permit all students to respond without worry or concern.  Teachers can ask questions that require more thought provoking text responses from the students.
CPS users have a choice of a large screen where teachers can type the question they want to ask the students or a smaller response bar that can be placed anywhere on the screen. To change the setting from a large screen to a small response bar, choose “delivery options” from the settings menu. Teachers then have the option to check or uncheck the “show large screen” box in the verbal questions section of the delivery options window. Once that is done they would click “verbal engage” from the “engage” tab and choose “short answer” or “essay answer” depending on the character response they want from their students. Short answer has a maximum of 40 characters and essay answer has a maximum of 120 characters.

ActivInspire users would open the expresspoll from the main toolbar and choose text response “ABC”.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Anything Containers in ActivInspire

So let’s say that you are using ActivInspire with your students to teach a concept in class and you need a place on the page for students to write notes or calculate math problems. Let’s also say that you need more than one area for you students to answer your questions or solve your problems and there isn’t enough space on the page. You can use the shape tool to draw a rectangle (note paper) with a tab so that the student can slide it on the page answer the question or problem and slide it off the page to make room for the next students answer. If the student wrote their notes on the rectangle and slid the rectangle off the page, the notes they wrote would not move. Not so if you select the rectangle, click on the properties browser and choose can contain “anything” in the drop down in the container section. If you don’t see any options in the container section of the properties browser, click the plus sign to the left of the word container. Now when the student writes in the rectangle and slides it off the page so only the tab is visible, the notes will go with it. You can also create more than one rectangle (sliding note area) on the page for multiple students.