Getting ready for online assessments? Help students build the necessary skills through technology-infused performance tasks that meet standards and make students excited about learning!
From drag-and-drop formative assessments to open-ended passion projects, Wixie can help students build the technical skills they need for online testing while engaging with the curriculum.
Drag and Drop
Wixie includes thousands of curriculum-focused templates that require students to drag and drop objects on the screen to demonstrate understanding. They can also drag to put items in sequences such as the order of a story or the life cycle of a butterfly.
Browse templates that match your classroom topics using the Curriculum or Template folders at your Wixie home page. When you find a template or activity you want to use, you can assign it to students to have it show up for them when they login to Wixie.
Online tests may also ask students to arrange objects to demonstrate understanding. Use the Image button to access pictures in the Wixie media library.
The Math folder includes folders filled with objects like base ten blocks and Cuisinaire rods, students can manipulate to create value and show patterns.
While students can use any of these virtual manipulatives on a blank Wixie canvas, you can also find many templates in the curriculum library that already include these images. To find them, open the Curriculum folder at your home page and browse the templates in the Math folder. For example, you can find and assign several Wixie templates that require students to manipulate tangram shapes to complete a specified image.
If you want to keep their work more on the play end of the spectrum, encourage students to create objects using the Tangram shapes. You can even create an assignment that is a blank page, but that has the activity open to show a specific media library folder, like the tangram shapes.
Using these activities gives students a chance to practice skills like click and drag, select and deselect objects, and use scaling and rotating options. Students can adjust size and shape using handles on the object itself or by using options on the Tools panel. The more ways students know how to manipulate objects, the easier it will be for them to figure out how an unfamiliar tool or interface might function.
Use tools like protractors and rulers
The Wixie media library includes math tools like rulers and protractors. Again you can browse the Templates folder or search for "measurement" in the bar at the top of your Wixie home page to find templates that include these tools. Like the tangram shapes mentioned above, these tools may need to be rotated to measure a specific angle in an image or a specific dimension of a shape.
Online test questions may ask students to connect with a line, draw a circle around, or "build a model of" as they are answering questions. The paint tools in Wixie work the same way paint tools work in most online programs.
Students need to learn to select the tool, let go of the mouse button, move over the canvas, and click and drag to draw. They may also need to select and change options such as line or brush thickness and whether a shape is drawn as an outline or filled.
The simple act of drawing has relaxing effects, and you might want to use this as a fun de-stressing activity during testing. But using drawing or painting tools can also help you engage students in the curriculum and evaluate their understanding. For example, students can use drawing tools to illustrate the water cycle or to support specific details and information in the text they are writing.
While you may have had a typing program in your computer class, many classrooms integrate technology into daily classroom instruction and computers are used and not learned. Giving students opportunities to show off what they know can encourage them to practice typing as well as understand how mastery of this skill can help them communicate.
Students need to be able to type at a reasonable speed in order to answer the volume of questions requiring a text-based answer in the allotted test time. They also need to know the location of the space bar and delete/backspace keys, as well as how to use the arrow tools to move within a text box.
Any project that asks students to show what they know inevitably requires them to use the space bar and delete options. While they often get sidetracked by font, size, and layout options, adjusting the look of specific text in a text object requires them to learn how to select and deselect text.
Online tests are beginning to include an option for recording voice so that students can more easily explain their thinking without needing typing skills. While getting a microphone connected and working with any device can be a challenge, asking students to practice explaining their thinking and work using the voice recording tools in Wixie helps them build metacognitive skills and an awareness of their own learning.
Practice these skills with a haiku
While there were lots of specific ideas listed above, a simple content-focused performance task can help students practice many of these skills at the same time. For instance, ask students to write, illustrate, and record a haiku.
Haiku is one of the most important forms of traditional Japanese poetry. Haiku is, today, a 17-syllable verse form consisting of three metrical units of 5, 7, and 5 syllables.
An old pond!
A frog jumps in-
The sound of water.
Each Haiku must contain a kigo, a season word, which indicates in which season the Haiku is set. For example, cherry blossoms would indicate spring, and snow would indicate winter.
Because of their short length, haiku generally don't take too long to write, yet provide students practice with typing, spacing, and most likely deleting. If you ask students to highlight important words, you can also give them practice with selecting and deselecting text. Asking them to drag and drop images from the library or use the paint tools to create illustrations that support the meaning of the poem will also motivate them while providing additional skills practice.
If you integrate Wixie into your daily instruction with activities connected to your curriculum, you won't need to use Wixie for intentional online skills practice, you will simply make this practice an essential part of the learning process in your classroom.