Kahoot! is a game-based learning platform. It was designed for social learning and it’s learning games, “Kahoots”, are multiple-choice quizzes that are user-generated and can be accessed via a web browser or the Kahoot app. I have used Kahoot almost on a weekly basis over the past 2 years, it’s become my fave for formative testing and a part of my learning toolkit.
As an app developer myself, I am a sucker for brilliant apps and as a teacher, I have enjoyed the success of Kahoot in my classroom especially in evaluating how my students are learning the material throughout the course/semester. Allow me to share with you!
Providing instant feedback during testing for my students has never been easier. With Kahoot, I can see how many students chose a wrong answer and determine if there are any underlying misconceptions; all of these on a question-by-question basis. Usually, students with a better understanding would usually step in and explain in their own words (private speech) and sometimes language (yes, I have a lot of EFL students). These instant interventions afford my struggling students another opportunity to relearn the concept and the higher students to cement understanding.
In addition, I always repeat a few questions or throw in similar questions in the next quiz and I keep an eye on students that struggled the last time. The effort pays off when everyone in the class gets a question right the second or third time the question appears.
Student Engagement ✓
This is perhaps the most important element of any classroom and having the class focused on the screen during a Kahoot quiz allow my students to start a conversation about the concept being tested and in some cases, challenge the answer and explain why they believe an alternative was perhaps the better answer. This engagement is usually in the form of peer-peer, group or whole-class. In my social media marketing class, the benefit of this back-and-forth is priceless because it puts my students in the driver seat of the conversation and by implication, learning.
Who does not like a good game. When I switched things up in my new school and introduced game-based learning activities, the overall classroom dynamics improved. I said goodbye to classroom management problems. I found myself actually feeling refreshed at the end of my lessons rather than drained. Games can improve the morale of a dull classroom or stimulate their interest in a new concept. My students have insisted on weekly Kahoots and they are really keen to impress/show-off. My advice is to remember to vary the levels and kinds of questions when creating the Kahoots so that you are providing adequate challenge for everybody.
It is not as easy as it sounds though. A lot of teachers that I have chatted with have said that it is difficult to create/curate useful tests and I agree. Every teacher knows that finding great resources is not always easy. I will say that it takes some getting used to. Different teachers have different goals for testing and different classes have different needs/styles.
Once you figure it out, you will begin to enjoy the rewards. Low-stakes quizzes get my students really comfortable and expressive and at this moment, I can accurately determine how well they have understood and their level of readiness for new content. At the end of the day, everyone wins.