As more classrooms are equipped with data projectors and interactive whiteboards, schools are seeking ways to make them come alive. The new interactive voting devices from A Class Technology offer plenty of activities that should fit the bill.
In common with other voting systems, the main business of EzClick Pro involves teachers writing multiple-choice questions that can be accompanied by images and media files.
Creating files in the editor section of the application is extremely easy; the Windows-like format is user-friendly and the techniques for question writing can be mastered in five minutes. A variety of templates is available and teachers can specify the number of responses available to participants.
There are, however, a number of features, specific to EzClick Pro, that will be tremendously useful to teachers and that will put pupils in the gameshow mood.
Teachers can select fastest response, where the first pupil to answer correctly gets the points available - and the sound of a fanfare, which should help motivation.
A buzz-in mode can be used to liven-up oral questioning sessions. There's no need to give pupils an array of noises because a quick click on the handset (see right) will let them choose to be the first pupil to answer a question. And the elimination option means that, in a team quiz, participants who answer questions incorrectly can be knocked out, again creating a game show atmosphere.
But it is the unique PowerClick option that will appeal most to teachers.
Using this, you can create presentations in PowerPoint, as usual, then add multiple-choice questions and let the EzClick Pro system know that certain slides contain these. Option choices and correct responses can be specified, meaning that teachers can simply run through a presentation and combine it with a multiple-choice quiz in one package. There is no need to swap between programs to enable a quiz to take place. This is a key feature, as some voting systems suffer from an inability to integrate pictures and presentation slides easily in order to create the coherent, slick lessons that our pupils are coming to expect.
Another feature that will appeal to teachers and management is the self-paced option, whereby pupils can use the system to record their answers to paper-based tests. This saves on photocopying costs and teacher marking time.
EzClick Pro has a lot going for it. Although the lightweight handsets are a little too similar to calculators, and teachers will need to monitor them carefully, the whole system is easy to use and full of fun features - and it will definitely appeal to teachers and pupils.
Question packs are available, which can cut down on workload, although inputting questions is extremely simple. And running the program is made incredibly easy with the teacher handset and onscreen prompts, meaning that the teacher can stand anywhere in the room and still control the quiz.
ACLASS TECHNOLOGY Stand G61 www.aclasstechnology.com
Tel: 01484 717070
Price: from pound;1,399 for 15 users and 7,000 curriculum questions.
Fitness for purpose **** Ease of use ***** Features **** Quality **** Value for money ****
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