Recently, I keep encountering this online quiz maker and data collector called Kahoot!
Kahoot is a classroom response system that forms an intriguing intellectual growth place through game based training. The program has many exciting implications for mathematical practice. Foremost of these implications are the ability to quickly gather lots of data about your students progress in correctly solving or answering mathematical questions, to have a fun app by which students can have fun answering questions on the content areas they are currently studying, and to identify commonly misunderstood learning objectives in a selected response format. The disadvantages of Kahoot may be the competitive nature of the application which may cause slower students to see themselves as failing, when they may in fact be mastering the course just fine, or steadily improving they just take more time. Also, the achievement gap may be widened by such a program as students become very discouraged when they consistently land near the bottom of the kahoot rankings, despite their best attempts to do well.
The speed with which the game measures your responses by could be a misleading source of scoring, as the quickest students are not necessarily the ones that best understand a concept, but they are the ones who can most quickly crunch numbers or define a concept. I think the data that the program allows teachers to have following the competition definitely counteracts this issue with Kahoot!
As I was trying to understand more about the program I found a useful little tutorial on youtube for the basics of how to use the program as a teacher. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zyPX6qP7FZU
The first of my experiences with Kahoot! came on my observations at a middle school. The teacher used the program to check the students comprehension and analysis of the transverse of parallel lines in euclidean geometry. Through the game, she was able to ask her students about corresponding, alternate interior, vertical, and exterior angles. Beyond that she even asked some questions that students had to use their knowledge of concepts like perpendicular, and bisector to get the answer.
My second and most recent experience was at CRU, a Christian organization I go to on campus. The speaker was a teacher ironically enough. A middle school history teacher who used the tool to help us remember the lesson he taught us about God’s unconditional love. With over 60 participants I was able to see Kahoot at work in a much larger setting.
Kahoot is an exciting program because the limits of it are still unknown. The developers are very willing to change the product to work with teachers and have a Facebook group in which they want teacher feedback on the program. Overall, I believe that Kahoot! is an excellent tool for most classrooms with any internet technology at all! I would say the tool deserves four and half thumbs up out of five. The positives far out weigh the negatives, but it is not perfect.