by Erin Dye
Are you a fan of exit tickets? Is your administration pushing them at your school? Even if they’re not, it’s something to consider. Running formative assessment during class requires preparation, management, participation, and grading time. As a result, the system tends to work best with multiple-choice questions (and thus, it can’t assess the entire range of skills students learn), but exit tickets can be a great way to figure out if you need to reteach or if you can move on.
As with most things, having an easy daily routine can be a good way to manage your formative assessment and exit tickets. Technology in the classroom can make a big difference here, but even if you’re in a low-tech room, there’s still a lot you can do to lessen your administrative workload.
We’ve divided up this resource list based on the level of access to technology in your classroom.
For one-to-one classrooms:
Find a web-based assessment resource that will export data from your students’ answers into an Excel chart or some other useful format. Daily formative assessment is likely to fail if you are still stuck grading 30+ individual answers. We love Kahoot. The great thing about this resource is that it somehow manages to be engaging and fun for every grade level. And it really is fun—try it with your colleagues at your next staff meeting and watch a room full of adults light up.
You can also use Socrative to issue short quizzes. This service also allows you to export data. A lot of teachers like Socrative for vocabulary test prep and for open response as well. Socrative takes just a few more minutes to set up than Kahoot does, but it offers a wider range of answering options (i.e., more than just multiple choice). Socrative even has templates and sample exit ticket questions already available for you to use.
Classrooms with response devices (clickers):
If you have clickers, you can plug a few questions into the clicker software each day and have your students follow the normal classroom procedures for using the clickers to answer. Depending on how you’ve set up the system’s software, the data will export auto-graded results into a format you can upload into your grade book.
Sometimes the only technology in a classroom is the teacher’s smartphone. Never fear, though, you can deliver auto-graded quizzes using paper and your phone.
Mastery Connect, the group that makes the super-useful Common Core app, have a resource called the Bubble Sheet Scanner. Your students fill out a paper multiple-choice answer sheet. Then you hold their completed papers up to your computer’s camera, scan the papers, and the software automatically grades each quiz. (You can also download a free app for your iPad.) All the data is exportable to your grade book.
You can also try using Plickers (“paper clickers”), which allows you to use your smartphone or tablet to capture student responses. First, you print out (or order via Amazon) a set of cards, which you hand out to your students. When you ask a question during class, students hold up their card to answer the question. Each student’s card looks different, so there’s no easy way for someone to copy a classmate’s answer. While students have their cards raised, you use the Plickers app on your smartphone to take a picture of the classroom. The app reads the responses and shows the data on your phone. You can also log in from your computer and download a spreadsheet with the data.
Give exit tickets a try to figure out where your students understand the curriculum and where they may be falling behind. Exit tickets will help you intervene and remediate at the most effective times. Using tech-enhanced resources with your exit tickets will help keep you sane and will make the data more useful.
What do you use for exit tickets? Let us know below.
Erin Dye is Manager of Consulting Services for Green Light Professional Development and a Google Certified Educator. She has extensive experience creating digital materials for interactive whiteboards and iPads. She writes about technology integration and GLPD’s work in local schools.