Plickers In Grade 1


This week I had an extra session to spend with my grade 1 students so I decided to experiment and use Plickers. Since we are transitioning to a new unit this was a great opportunity to assess for the conceptual understanding of the previous unit and to reflect on its outcomes.

It took me almost 20 minutes in total,  to explain to the students how it works, collect their answers and give them a feedback.

My goal is to reduce this time bellow 10 minutes for the next assessment. Here are the outcomes:

My students responded very well and I will definitely use Plickers in the following situations:

  • In launching a unit provocation (picture, movie, etc.) with the purpose of collecting useful information to plan further steps of the inquiry process. Building from the known and taking the time to find questions for inquiry will be the stages where using Plickers can make a big impact to understand what my students know or what they are interested in.
  • In our formative assessments Plickers will be a great tool to help students gain a new perspective and to check for their understanding over what was learned.
  • Printing their answers will be an important part of their portfolios. I use Easy Portfolio app to export content to the students and parents.
  • In our summative assessments or end of the unit reflections, where students can express what they have learned without peer pressure.

A great resource that I have used is @MrAdamPE and his very useful article on Plickers:

Matthew Bassett @PhysEdApps explained during the Physedagogy Summit how he uses Plickers. He did this in our collaborative presentation “iPads in Physical Education”:

In his website, @rmbyrnewrote a great article about it too:

Leave your thoughts about any other creative ways to use Plickers in your PE lesson. Would love to hear about it and shape them into new ideas!



Superburst – Slow Motion Video


IMG_02896When focusing on a gymnastic element or game technique I often share with my students a slow motion capture of the highlighted element. I do this this by using Superburst app. This is a real time feed back that can turn into a formative assessment enhancing students learning, and the next stages of planning.  Sometimes I compile a couple of movies created from these bursts into the Replay app, to create a short clip which I will mirror on a big screen at the end of the lesson. Then, I encourage my students to reflect in small gorups about their perfomance. Superburst comes in a bundle with some other useful apps such as SuperSlo,  Supercut, Square Video, Reverser, Snap Still, and Flow. Give them a try and share your ideas or creations!

Digital Technology Tools


Recently I have been presenting with my colleague Carmen Fernandez at the Qatar Academy during a joint PD session. We have shared some of the strategies and tools that we are using in our lesson when integrating technology.

I have talked about QR codes, video analysis assessments in the early ages and how to record, report and share evidence of IMG_0094these assessments with students, parents, and teachers.

Carmen presented tools that can boost the summative and formative assessment or her Spanish lesson: Kahoot, Tagxedo, Vocaroo, and Socrative.

The highlight of the presentation was our collaboration during an integration unit about ocean animals with pre 5 students. Carmen recorded the students pronouncing various names of ocean animals in Spanish. With these files she created QR codes. I posted the QR codes in the gym and the students had to scan them with the iPads, listen to the recordings, and then imitate the moves IMG_0087of those animals for a number of times. Having a great mix of students for all around the world, this formative assessment turned into a peer assessment and a great way to differentiate. Students with good Spanish phonetics skills helped their partners to identify the animals and facilitated learning.

Acquiring  Spanish or any other language through movement is possible with the help of technology like the one I have described. Students are engaged in the learning process, teachers are learning, and the efficiency of the lesson is increased.

Share your ideas if you have other relevant learning experiences!

Quick and Effective Video Assessment


One app that is being very useful in my lessons and personal life is Replay. It gives me the opportunity to provide students with real time feedback and to use my time efficiently in school. Spending my breaks to edit movies or select tracks are history now. This app does it all and very fast!

It will process some 40 photos and videos in a free video style in less than a minute. It has a built-in music selection which is essential. The coolest feature is that you are entitled to a 30 seconds preview of one song from iTunes for free.

During the lesson I take a few relevant photos or videos of students performing various skills. I select the files and Replay compiles and completes them with transition effects. As my students prepare to exit the gym, I mirror the movie with an AppleTV on a big screen. We ask the students to observe a specific technique or to identify a concept, and then they can perform a self-assessment, peer assessment or just an exit permit. When focusing on gymnastic element or game technique I often insert a slow motion capture of it. It gives me a chance to have a quick feed back from the students right after they performed that element. I can play the clip during the lesson or at the beginning of the next session to start the inquiry from it.

I use the app with my kids at home, especially during the weekends. It can create beautiful snapshots with the moments we enjoy the most.

Find out more about it at


My First IB Article : Technology and PE in the Early Years


I am very honored and happy  to have this article published in the IB Community Blog. This is the result of a fantastic collaborative work with my students, teachers, teacher assistants and a very supportive PYP Coordinator.

AC QR Codes 10

The use QR codes with KG students in a stand-alone Adventure Challenge unit in Physical Education is a breakthrough experience at such age and I am very proud of their achievements.  They were able to scan codes, play a movie and perform the exercise shown in the movie. All of this was part of a scavenger hunt which was meaningful and fun for them. They learned how to cooperate in a team, share the same goal and use technology while still performing various physical activities.




Injured Student Participating


There are many ways to engage the injured or non-participant students in the PE lesson, but often we can’t resist the temptation to have them seated and to “protect” them. Erika, a pre 4 student, had to wear a cast during the school hours and her participation in the PE lesson would have been limited.

So I decided to assign her with the task of observing some of her colleagues during the Individual Pursuits unit. All we needed was an iPad and the Easy Tag app. She enjoyed her new role and she was able to access the prior knowledge gained throughout the unit while performing this formative assessment on basic movement skills.

What is your way to engage students who can’t participate from various reasons?

PE Postcard: Checking for Students’ Understanding


As educators, we are responsible for learning and in order to check for understanding to be useful we need to look for effective strategies in our planning.

The PE Postcard is one of the great on-going, formative assessment I use with my students. I believe that the formative assessment serves to improve instruction and to provide student feedback and when used consistently, and used well, the great majority of students should be successful.

PE Postcard

PE Postcard 

We use the PE Postcard as an “exit-ticket” where students write about their learning for the day, or answer a question. In this grade 1 example we have asked the students to write a postcard to their parents, mentioning the skills and at least one of the PE related concepts that we have inquired about. In the current Individual Pursuits stand-alone unit we inquire using the following related concepts: Patterns, Development, and Performance. When the activity is done we are placing these postcards in their homework folders.

I was happy to see that most of them could identify the concept of Patterns through the learning experiences they have been performing.

What’s your strategy to check for understanding that you want to share?