As a classroom teacher I was always looking for fun ways to engage students with technology in the classroom, especially when I was meeting with small groups during guided math lessons. My biggest gripe with many of the apps or activities students were working on, was that the activities were almost always addressing very general skills (addition, subtraction, place value), but not those very targeted and specific lessons that I was teaching in the classroom (counting on to add). I also often never could get data about how students were performing, so if I am being honest, I’d hope that they were “getting it” when they looked like they were working diligently.
I feel like I am always on the hunt to find resources that help to solve the kinds of problems I experienced so often. This past year, I have become SUPER excited about the possibilities available with Boom Cards.
Let’s start with some basic info about Boom- It is an online platform where teachers have accounts. They load what are called “decks” (activities) into their libraries and can assign to students either by giving students accounts, or by sharing a link with students. At first I looked at them sort of like digital task cards… but now recognize that they can be much much more!
Here are 5 reasons I LOVE Boom Cards!
- Many of them are created by teachers, for teachers- This is an awesome perk because we know that teachers understand what works for students. Which kinds of manipulatives help to illustrate different skills. I often add drag and drop manipulatives that function almost just like real life ones do! Here’s an example in a math deck, where students can drag and drop the counters to help them to solve math problems.
- They can provide students with immediate feedback & teacher data- Boom decks can be self checking, which means they often provide students feedback right away about if their answer is correct or incorrect. You can also collect data if you choose to create student accounts with a teacher membership (rather than fast pin links) you can see student progress and check in on how they did!
- They are interactive & support sound clips- Boom Cards have the built in ability to be designed to be interactive. You can have draggable images, click to select, type in boxes, and check off multiple choice answers. They also support sound clips. This is a HUGE one for younger learners in my opinion. There are many times when I have wanted to design a digital lesson using powerpoint or slides, but in edit mode (where students can interact), I haven’t found a great way to include sounds. With Boom Cards I can voice record directions. I can also voice record words or sounds to help build those beginning phonological awareness skills. I can even create a card in the deck with a sort of guided practice using voice recorded directions.
- You can get specific- One of the things I have done as a creator is try to get really specific about the skills covered in many of my Boom Decks. You can find decks for “Counting on to add 1, 2, or 3” or very specific language arts skills. This is a major perk because it opens the door to allow for that sort of targeted technology practice whether you’re using it as a center or a tool for virtual learning.
- They are engaging- They truly feel more like a game than task cards for students. The fun sounds, ability to include graphics, and interactivity makes them a favorite practice for students. It’s always a perk when we can provide targeted independent practice that students love!
I’ve been busy filling up my BOOM cards library with resource you might love. Browse here!