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Funny Ways Technology Can Help You Know Your Students Better

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If you are a teacher starting a new class, there is a chance you are feeling excited and a little nervous. No matter how many years of practice you have under your belt, meeting a class full of students is always a challenge. It will take you time to get to know the group well, however, there are a few things you can do to facilitate the process.

You most probably have a list of your own tried-and-true icebreakers such as The Little Known Fact, True or False or Word Association, which are effective but, let’s face it, not much fun. Why not try something new? Bring your methods and practices up-to-date with the help of technology and your students will definitely appreciate it!

Here is the list of 8 ways to use 21st century technology as an effective icebreaking tool:

  • Instead of asking your students to tell about their dreams and hopes, fears and scares have them Pinterest it! Let them use an interactive Pinterest board with 10 to 15 pins, which will better represent and summarize them.
  • Offer your students to create a minute-long podcast or a YouTube-like video introducing themselves, their hobbies, dreams and achievements. They can present it individually on their devices or as an audio gallery.
  • Most students are quite skilled at writing their own blogs, tweets etc. Use it to create a classroom blog where everyone can post their messages telling about themselves.
  • Ask your students to create some artwork that better reflects their emotions, objectives and dreams. Most of them are sure to have a hobby of some kind, let them combine these things. Whether it is graffiti or photographing, filmmaking or sports, think how they can introduce themselves through their hobbies.
  • Have them present their own comic strips telling about funny situations and accidents they have had in their lives.
  • Offer your students to create a 6-word autobiography telling about themselves (for example, “there is no place like Africa”) and let others try to guess what they meant to say. Although this is not necessarily a tech-based tool, you can ask students to create a short video to accompany the story and make the game more intriguing.
  • PollEverywhere is a wonderful tool to get to know your students opinion and ask them interesting questions such as who their favorite actor is or what subject they like the best. It is the easiest and most engaging way to get real-time experience with your students. Although this software is commercial, it can be used in a number of classroom activities.
  • Creating speaking Voki avatars will help your students introduce themselves in a fun way. Ask them to take a creative approach to the task and present an avatar that possesses features and details of its real-life prototype.

Social media can be a great source of inspiration and creativity for teachers and their students. Using it in your classroom can make the atmosphere much more engaging and ensure everyone is involved.




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