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Good for you Shannon! So, I should have called ANGEL directly when it was down this AM. ;-)
I learned about a really great web site at a training I attended today called www.polleverywhere.com . It relies on mobile devices for "instant audience feedback." The teacher created a poll, displayed the question on the projector, and participants texted their response from their personal mobile phones. You could literally watch the data change in front of your eyes as the responses were recorded. If your students have access to mobile devices (and if they are allowed to use them in school), this could be a great way for teachers to check for understanding. And the best part? There is no cost!
I too have seen and used this program. It is handy for people with cell phones. At the university, we use i>Clickers (at a price of $40 each plus the base station) because we use these answers for our quizzes that are considered part of their grade.
The problem with students using a cell phone would be the exclusion of students who do not have a phone. At the university level, I would believe that most students have one but not at the K-12 level.
I believe this program would be great for surveys, check your knowledge and non graded responses.
You can use Poll Everywhere for you students to respond to a review made for class. The poll can be incorporated into a powerpoint, then students text in their responses. Obviously this means they need cell phones, with texting, but that isn't too much or a problem these days. You could even have them in groups, if there weren't enough phones around. You've got to make sure you are in a signal friendly classroom though, ouch for me in one of my rooms (in the basement).
Teachers can get this for free and up to 40 responses per poll, with as many questions as you want. There are some cool feature for checking, etc, but you have to pay for it ($50 a year)
Ian, I really like your idea of using Poll Everywhere during a review session in class. I give my students a multiple choice practice test before every chapter test. Using Poll Everywhere, I could go through each and every question one at a time on the review day and have students text in their answers (a, b, c, or d). This would instantly let me know whether or not I need to spend time going over a particular problem. Many times I feel like I am wasting energy going through problems that nobody needs help with. This would allow me to focus in on those areas where my students are really struggling and use the class time more effectively. Also, I could use this for vocabulary review in which I create a powerpoint with definitions or examples and have the students text in the correct vocabulary word, given a short list to choose from. I like having the instant feedback and a visual of where my students are excelling and where they are lacking. What a great way to use this technology!