Although words such as “remote learning” and “distance learning” have dominated our conversations this school year, the heart of every classroom is still the connection between a teacher and their students. With the right tools and resources, that connection can remain infinitely stronger than the wifi networks powering your virtual classroom.
Over 400 teachers from the DonorsChoose community shared their feedback and tips for the most popular programs enabling their students to learn from home. Here’s what teachers across the country had to say about Nearpod:
First question: What is Nearpod?
“Nearpod is an interactive presentation tool that allows you to do it all in one place. You can teach using modeling, visuals, written information, 3D models, videos, and virtual trips. Then you have the opportunity to engage students with polls, quizzes, questions, and games. Everyone can participate, every time. You can make your own or choose from a full library of lessons. It’s all in one spot.” – Miss DeLisa, 6th Grade
“A phenomenal platform to deliver engaging lessons both synchronous and asynchronous. Nearpod has single handedly saved me during the pandemic! I can deliver live lessons simultaneously to kids at home and those sitting right in front of me. Students are constantly engaged and the data reports provide me with thorough information in a one spot hub for all who joined my lesson!” – Ms. Fliegelman, K-5th Grade
Is it a good fit for my classroom?
Teachers recommend Nearpod for all grades! For any lesson in which you would use a slideshow presentation, you can swap in Nearpod to get added engagement and real-time feedback.
“I thought my seniors would find this cheesy and “kid-like,” but they are my most engaged class so don’t be afraid of trying it with older students.” – Ms. Sloane, 7th-12th Grades
What do teachers really think?
“I wholeheartedly recommend this tool for teachers to use! It made it so much easier to have students complete a variety of activities without losing instructional time for them to get to those different links” – Ms. Reed, 11th-12th Grades
“I wish I had harnessed these tools sooner. I started out making very basic lessons because I thought it would be ‘hard’ to design special activities. Boy, was I wrong!” – Mrs. Kleinschmidt, 3rd-5th Grades
“Nearpod is a way to make presentations interactive. You can add games, matching, fill in the blank, quizzes, videos with questions, and more. It has taken my classes up a notch as the students are so much more engaged.” – Ms. Sloane, 7th-12th Grades
But will my students like it?
“Yes. Students really love the game Time to Climb and ask ‘can we play?’ everyday. I incorporate it for lesson assessment to check for understanding and really do try to play daily. It helps with 100% student engagement and motivation in my classroom.” – Mrs. de Lara – Staunton, Elementary
“My students love the variety of activities in Nearpod, especially ‘Time to Climb’ and ‘Matching Cards.’ There is no limit to the variety of ways they can be combined!” – Mrs. Kleinschmidt, 3rd-5th Grades
“One of my students stated that “I feel like I am actually learning now, when I don’t get it you show me, then I can show you.” – Mrs. Coba, 3rd-5th Grades
“Students’ weekly appearances to my tech lessons were evident enough as to how much they liked it! I did hear from teachers that students would remind each other to be on time for our tech lesson so they wouldn’t miss out on anything :)” – Ms. Fliegelman, K-5th Grades
Anything else I should know?
“I wish that I had started using it earlier–DonorsChoose project helped fund the Platinum license as the free version doesn’t have enough storage space for a year’s work. Take advantage of the student paced option for more than just when students are absent.” – Ms. Reed, 11th-12th Grades
I’m in. What next?
You can get a Nearpod subscription without having to reach into your own pocket. Flipgrid is available on DonorsChoose through our vendor AKJ Education. Get started on a project today.
Already using Nearpod? Here’s an expert tip to make the most of this tool:
Nearpod works great when you’re teaching – and even when you’re not! If you’re prepping some just-in-case lesson plans for an unanticipated day out, Nearpod can make it easier to hand off the class to a substitute teacher.
“There are so many possibilities and it’s a great tool to leave for a substitute. Students get the knowledge and are accountable even when the teacher is out.” – Mrs. Rochon, 5th Grade
Other remote learning resources you may find helpful:
- DonorsChoose Teachers Review Remote Learning with BrainPOP
- DonorsChoose Teachers Review Remote Learning with Breakout EDU
- DonorsChoose Teachers Review Remote Learning with Flipgrid
You know what your students need, especially during this time of remote learning. The DonorsChoose community is here to help you get it. 3 out of 4 schools in the U.S. have a public school teacher who’s used DonorsChoose – that’s over 1.8 million classroom project requests funded. Yours could be next. Start your project today.