Pass it on

And then suddenly it happens… One colleague asks about how to use digital quizzes in the classroom… Kaboom! I´m pleased and beyond happiness. I gladly share the knowledge and experiences that I have with my colleague. So I thought, why not share it here too?!

Here´s how I do it… When lecturing nursing students in acid base balance, I start out with the commonly used (oh so boring…) power point presentation. I´ve really tried to make it appetizing with a good structure, fancy photos and everything, but still… it is what it is. After the initial feeling of being a “motivation butcher” (with the power point) I try to get the students back on track with some real life patient cases. Right now I have four of them, in accordance with the four disturbance of the acid base balance. Together we figure out which disturbance the patient have, relevant treatment and how to prevent it to occur. Last but not least… I end the hole lecture with a simple quiz. I tell the students that it is voluntary to participate and that they are free to go if they like. Stunningly, almost everyone willingly stay. I guess it has something to do with curiosity and an instinct to compete…? The tool I use for the purpose is nothing less then Kahoot. It is free and it is easy to use. You simply create an account and within 5-15 minutes you have done your first quiz. At first I had 20 multiple choice questions but that was too much, thus some students lost interest after approximately 10. Now I have 12 and I think that is a good quantity of questions. After each question Kahoot shows the correct answer and then top ten of fastest participant. As the quiz progresses the tension increases. At the end we have three winners. They all have to stand up and receive our tribute, consistent of applause, cheering, hugs and some silly prizes linked to acid base. Coca cola = acid, bicarbonate = base and SUPER-SOUR candy = containing an enormous amount of hydrogen ions.

This is higher education (undergraduate degree) and I am well aware of that this multiple choice quiz has nothing to do with critical thinking or research but I do believe it has something to do with motivation. I experience that the students do well on their assessment and they seem to remember the lecture as something good and joyful. I´m not sure they remember exactly how the kidney compensate for unprecedented levels of hydrogen ions but I believe that the students possess a basic understanding for acid base balance. When becoming nurses, most likely, they remember how to fill in the gaps of their knowledge, dependent on the current needs, and hopefully, still think of acid base as something understandable and engaging.

Photo: Kaboom by ballpit (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

In love…!

I don´t know if it is the excitement of spring or something else but the feeling I have is pure, present and real. It is official now – I am in love!

In love with Coggle! Its usability goes beyond my wildest dreams of what a free mind map tool could be like. It is:

  • User-friendly
  • Aesthetic
  • Collaborative
  • Accessible
  • Did I say easy-to-use?

I have to restrain from using it too much. Or at least not bombarding my students with it. I could not help myself for telling them about my obsession. I told them they could easy collaborate with each other when studying for the exams (eh… lifetime). I will be seeing them in a couple of weeks from now and it will be exciting to hear about their experiences of mind mapping together. To wrap this up – Coggle has really lived up to my expectations. To be honest, I´m craving for the Awesome version!

Photo: Love by LongitudeLatitude (CC BY 2.0)

 

Dead easy

So we made it! Group 7´s digital meet this evening was nearly crowded. After trying Adobe connect twice we decided to test Skype and if you ask me it was a small success. Finally we could hear Jennifer’s lovely voice (no longer Darth Waderish) and see Nour´s beautiful face.

I can´t  help comparing us adults competence with my daughter´s digital literacy. It really is remarkable what different skills we possesses. How is it possible that a twelve year old little human can navigate fearlessly and criss-cross among all available tools while we adults tremble even at the very thought of getting in to it. Without prestige my daughter and her cousin have been connected for years using their tablets and Skype. 89 kilometers separates them and they can spend hours in each other´s company using this dead easy tool.

What made us struggle a bit? Why didn´t we give in? Could it be the urge of dialogue… Coomey and Stephenson (2001) describe four major features of good practice for online learning where dialogue is one of them. They argues for structured dialogue lead by a moderator and designed after specific topics and questions.

As a student in #ONL161 I feel that this is what happens right here, right now. Alastair and Jennifer is guiding us gently into new ground with structured topics for us to interact and reflect on. It is almost you would think  that they have read the article 😉 Watch out – group 7 is on our way!

Photo by GotCredit 
Reference: Coomey, M., & Stephenson, J. (2001). Online learning: it is all about dialogue, involvement, support and control – according to the research. Teaching and learning online: Pedagogies for new technologies, 37-52.