Join Aaron Quigley for an in-depth discussion in this video Stick Pick, part of iPad Classroom: Apps for Educators.
Asking the right questions during class is an important part of checking for understanding, as well as identifying student misconceptions, so that we can address them. And asking good questions is also an art. This next application is going to help us ask better questions of our students, as well as help students perceive that our question asking is fair. When I first started teaching, I definitely had a small cup that had Popsicle sticks in it. I would pull out a Popsicle stick and I would read the name on the stick. Or sometimes, I would pull out a Popsicle stick and completely ignore the name and just call out the student who I wanted to address. But using the Popsicle sticks made my students think that my question asking was fair.
In addition to that I knew that there were certain types of questions I could ask of certain students. This particular application called pick sticks is going to help us organize not only who our students are, help us randomize selection of students, but also track what kind of questions should we ask of what students. The pick sticks application is a paid application and costs $2.99. However when you start to understand what this application can do for your classroom it's definitely and small price to pay. Here I have a class created that's my life science class. In this class I've only added six students.
You can easily add more students by clicking the + button in the upper right-hand corner. Here I will go ahead and add myself to this class by typing in my first and last name. Now once you've added the student name, and you click Save, the next step is to help categorize this student based on what kind of questions you should ask them. Here you can access the Original Bloom's Taxinomies, the Revised Bloom's Taxinomies, ESL standards, or I can just choose to create a stick only for the student. I'm going to go and access the blooms revised taxonomies. I'm going to scroll down and select Evaluating. What this means is the student that you're entering is at the evaluating level and how you ask questions of that.
All students are at different levels and you can start to categorize question stems based on the ability of that student. Here the application's reminding us that we can pick a stick by swiping up, by tapping or shaking. I'm going to go ahead and select a stick by swiping up. Here I've selected Greg Cruz. Now according to blooms level that I built Greg into the pick sticks application as, he's at the application level. And so pick sticks is giving me a variety of question stems. Such as, how would you organize blank to show blank? Or what would result if and I can use these question stems to make sure I'm asking Greg the appropriate level questions.
The other thing I can do is I can mark Greg's stick as used, or I could reset the stick. If I marked as used, then he's no longer in the selection for the next random selection. In addition to be able to randomly select a student, I can also touch the Peek button at the bottom of the screen. Here I can quickly bring up every student. Let's I'm going to call in Julie Kirkpatrick. I can select her name. I can say that she's at the remembering level of blooms taxonomy and have a variety of question stems that I could use to ask her as well. So during class sometimes I'll even bring up a student, make the student feel like they've been randomly selected, but in reality I'm asking that student very specific questions, because I want to check for their understanding in a certain content area.
Once I've finished asking Julia questions, I can either reset her stick, or I can mark it as used. When I'm finished with my lesson, I can simply hit the Reset button at the bottom of the screen, and I'll use Popsicle sticks to move back into the original container to be selected for the next use of this class. Going back to the Class menu, I also have the ability to add new classes. I can do this by clicking the + button in the upper right-hand corner. I'll go and add Chemistry. Once you add a class it'll come in with a blank can and you can simply start adding students to it. I hope this application is a benefit to you and the flow of your lessons as you're asking questions of your students.