We talked with May Yang, an English teacher, about her favorite workhouse teacher tech tool. May uses TeacherMade to create assignments and assessments online. She prefers it over Google and Schoology for making digital worksheets.
How do you incorporate other materials into your online teaching?
Do you know that old saying about how teachers like to beg, borrow, and steal? It is true. Teachers are collaborative by nature. We love sharing lesson plans and ideas. And even when a lesson is near perfect, we still want to tweak it to make improvements. With TeacherMade, teachers can take lessons from multiple sources and put them into one spot to teach a unit.
How can you organize all of your online resources for your classroom in one place?
Since TeacherMade works with many file extensions, my lessons include a variety of materials such as worksheets from a workbook, online PDFs, Word documents, Google documents, and even videos and audios. All these items can be placed together as a unit within TeacherMade. No more looking for worksheets and files from different places. For example, in TeacherMade, I can include anticipatory materials, practice exercises, and summative assessments. The anticipatory materials can be a survey, a quick writing response, a graphic organizer, or even a video or a song that students can watch or listen to and briefly reflect on.
TeacherMade allows me to create folders for all my assignments easily. Remember what I said about teachers liking to beg, borrow, and steal? Having one spot where I can organize all my work is nice. So, TeacherMade not only makes it easy for me to assign and grade my students’ work, but it also provides me with a way to organize and store all my files for future use.
How do you auto-grade assignments online?
To save time and give students a quick score, I can use TeacherMade’s auto-grading tools on the practice exercises. There are many options, such as multiple choice, drop-down, matching, and hot spot. I can vary how students engage with the exercises. In addition, I can have students write short responses or record themselves explaining an answer and linking their recording to the assignment. Speaking of recording, I can also record myself giving students directions or encouragement on an assignment.
How do you create online summative assessments?
I can also put my summative assignments right in TeacherMade. As with the practice exercises, I can combine auto-graded questions with open response answers. This will allow students multiple ways to show what they know and free up time for me to focus on the written response answers.
Why do you need an online worksheet creator over Google Docs?
Teachers unfamiliar with TeacherMade might wonder why not keep the practice exercises in Word or Google Docs. The problem is that Word and Google Docs do not have TeacherMade’s auto-grading tools. The tools allow students to see their scores instantly and depending on the purpose of the assignment, I can have the students redo and resubmit an assignment. Plus, if the practice exercise is a PDF, students can’t write on it. However, in TeacherMade, students have multiple ways to work on a PDF.
Why do you need an online worksheet creator when you have an LMS?
Another question some teachers might have is, why not put the exercises and assessment questions in an LMS platform such as Schoology? There are two issues with that: first, I would have to retype the questions into Schoology when I already have a test that is ready to go; and second, the test would have to be broken into individual questions when I might want students to see the entire test as a whole.
For example, in my 11th grade English class, I have a quiz on commas, semicolons, and colons. The quiz is made up of sentences that students wrote. I like the students to read the sentences and insert the correct punctuation marks. In Google Docs, that test would not be capable of being auto-graded. In Schoology, I would have to retype it. Students would also not be able to insert punctuation marks into the sentences.
How do you leave student feedback on digital worksheets?
When it comes to grading, it’s also convenient to grade in TeacherMade. I can use the left and right arrows to quickly navigate through all the assignments without exiting each student’s assignment to click on the next student on the list. Commenting is also fast since I can comment right on the assignment in TeacherMade.
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