Making Your Class More Engaging with Kahoot!

We all know that Brazilian students usually hate studying grammar, even in Portuguese. Maybe it is because they find it difficult to understand the real uses of those abstract nomenclatures that are given in their mother language, or just because it is boring for them to analyze structures over and over again. The fact is that they dislike it, and they bring this characteristic when it comes to learning the English grammar too.

As English teachers, we should always find ways to promote proper conditions for learning to be something motivating and pleasurable. In this context, many authors say one way of doing so is by inserting games and using their playful elements to promote meaningful and engaging experiences. Thus, an interesting tool to apply this is the Kahoot! application.

Kahoot! provides a platform that makes learning more fun. It is a website in which you can design fun quizzes to students. It creates an interactive environment that has a game-like feeling where students can compete against each other, for we all know they love competition. It also works on multiple devices including smartphones; you just need a web browser to access Kahoot! or an online store to download the app. To play it, students do not need to create an account; they just need a PIN number which is given by the teacher so that they can access the game.

When creating the game, the teacher has three options available: quiz, discussion, and survey. The first one consists in creating multiple-choice questions that can vary between text interpretation, comparisons, and grammar review. In this option, the correct answer is given right after students have chosen their alternatives, so it is the best one to work with grammar. If the teacher decides to go with the discussion option, it is pretty similar to the quiz, but it has no “correct” answer. It is best used as a warm-up to open a debate in class. And last but not least, the survey is useful to know students’ opinion about a particular topic. It can be used to measure their empathy with some subjects with the “safety” of anonymity. Here it is an example of a grammar quiz:

kahoot

Retrieved on September 13, 2017, from: https://goo.gl/p4Rpkg

Additionally, all of them are customizable in regards to time, images etc. They also come with the results chart and students’ scores, which can be very useful to measure how much of the content taughtwas retained by each of the students and what needs to be addressed on the upcoming instructional time.

Kahoot! can be an excellent application to use in the classroom. Of course, no magical tool will work every time. People are different and so are students. What we must be aware is that we should make learning more meaningful, act as facilitators and find ways to meet their needs the best way we can, and Kahoot! can help us a lot with that.

   
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