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Oct 08 2014 - 08:00 PM
Nearpod
article.title

More and more schools are acknowledging the power of mobile devices for learning in classrooms and have been either encouraging BYOD (bring your own device) programs or purchasing tablets for student use. However, this transition presents new challenges for educators, like keeping students on task and away from distractions in a digital environment. Nearpod is an online presentation platform with supporting mobile apps that allows educators to create interactive presentations or use works from other publishers, and more uniquely, to provide synchronized learning experiences to students' mobile devices. As teachers proceed through their presentations, students will see real-time instructional slides on their mobile devices and can participate in writing activities like polls, quizzes, and open-ended texts using their devices.

Pros:

Nearpod provides powerful synchronized viewing and participation experiences, yet it is very easy to use and set up. The presentation creation process is similar to other popular presentation programs so it should not be difficult for most educators. Students can start the real-time presentation through Nearpod’s mobile apps or websites by entering the pin password assigned to each live presentation. Educators can easily integrate web pages and PDF files so students can have these reading materials on their devices as the lessons unfold. Educators can get real time assessment results once students submit their answers, and students can get instant feedback on their progress. Educators can also highlight selected student works (texts and drawings) and broadcast them to students' devices.

Cons:

Nearpod is a powerful presentation tool for classrooms using mobile devices for learning, but it works best for teacher-centered teaching activities and might not be an effective tool for student-centered learning activities. Some features that might help the product gain greater adoption include the ability to upload existing presentations made using other software, enabling students to add notes alongside the slides during the presentation and downloading them afterwards for further study and reference.

Our Takeaway:

Using mobile devices in the classroom is an inevitable trend in education. Nearpod is a great tool to help educators conduct more effective learning activities in the classrooms. More pedagogical tools that support real-time peer-based classroom learning activities will be needed to move education forward in the digital age.

The Bottom Line:

Nearpod ensures that your students are on the same page—on their mobile devices!

Image: Logo via Nearpod

|By: Ching-Fu Lan|1371 Reads