Friday, July 5, 2013

Google Voice for Formative Assessment

A while back I wrote about how Google Voice was a great tool for getting students to speak on a more consistent basis.  One of the other aspects of Google Voice that I really liked this year as well was it's function as an "exit slip".

I initially wanted to use the Voice for speaking.  As I mentioned before, because of the large number of students that I have, I wanted to make sure that each student had the opportunity to speak to and answer questions about a particular topic.  However, I soon realized the texting function of Google Voice played just as an important role as did the speaking.  Because let's be honest, our students really only want to text one another anyway!

After my students viewed a tutorial about a particular topic, the next day in class I had them text me a response to a question that I put on the board.  After texting their response, they got to work on the in-class activities.  While they were working, I was able to go around and speak to them individually about the responses they had texted me and make any corrections if necessary.  They could then ask me any questions regarding the topic being studied as well.

In the last 5-10 minutes of class, we got back together as a group, reviewed an activity and answered any questions students had.  Then I gave them a prompt similar to the one from the beginning of class.  They then had to text me their answers.  As their texts were coming in, I was able to text them back with any corrections that were necessary.  Some students responded with another question, and most of them responded with a "Gracias" or a "Lo Siento" (I'm sorry).

The final text response functioned as an exit slip.  I essentially removed the paper aspect from the equation and gave the exit slip in a format that is more enjoyable to the students.  The feedback is also more efficient and timely for the students as well because it is immediate!  And in this age of instant gratification, nothing is better than that!


  1. Great idea! I wasn't sure if this would work for me, so checked it out this morning. I was expecting an email notification, like when my students telephone me. Ha! That didn't happen, so I thought I needed to reconfigure my GV account to accept texts. But my text message popped right to the top of the list of messages received, once I opened my GV account. With that, I'm now psyched to try using this tomorrow Thanks for the great tip!

  2. So glad that it worked for you! Both you and your students will love using it in class! Best of luck!