Are you struggling to come up with easy ways to work with mixed groups either in person or virtually? Today I want to share with you one of my favorite tools to use with mixed groups both in person and virtually!
I don’t know about you guys, but at my school, I have to schedule sessions based on availability and not based on need. So, I might have a group where I have some students working on articulation while others are working on syntax or vocabulary. And on top of that, all my students are working on more than one goal. While they may have some goals that are the same, they also have goals that differ from one another. In order to serve each student, I have to be able to work on all their different goals at the same time.
I like to base my sessions around a book, video, or an activity and then target all those goals indirectly throughout the activity instead of saying let me work with student A for five minutes, and then I’ll work with student B for five minutes. I don't know about you, but when I try to only work with one student at a time and switch off, those are the times when I normally have the most behavior issues. My goal for you guys is to have the least amount of problems as possible when it comes to behavior so that you can spend more time doing what you love – which is helping your students succeed! The tool I love to use for working on all those goals at the same time with mixed groups is Edpuzzle!
What is Edpuzzle?
It is a free tool from Google that allows you to import YouTube videos so that you can turn them into quizzes and different activities and save them for later. There are activities that are already on Edpuzzle where you can find just about anything you are looking for or you can create your own. You can also do a search for something such as inferencing and it will pull up all the videos and questions that other people have created on inferencing. You can then click on any of those videos and either use it as is or make a copy of it so that you can edit it or add to it and make it your own.
I love to create my own Edpuzzle activities because I can add all my own questions for all the different goals that the students in my group are working on and then the video will automatically pause at the right moments and pop the questions up. This is so helpful because then I don’t have to be paying attention to the video to remember where to pause it and remember what questions I wanted to ask. This is awesome because then I can focus on things like data tracking or minimizing behaviors. In Edpuzzle activities I have made for mixed groups, I put three different types of questions in the question boxes for the different goals that my students are all working on. I can add an articulation prompt, a wh question, an inferencing question, etc. all within the same box so that I can work on all the different needs within the group.
Below is an example of how I used a video to work with both of my students where one student was working on wh questions and the other student was working on context clues. The video pauses at this moment where Simon sees the spider and the question says Simon was “petrified” when he saw the spider. What do you think “petrified” means? Then the students can take turns answering and it allows me to work on both of their goals.
One strategy that I like to use when creating these Edpuzzles for mixed groups is to add questions for the students in a random order versus student A has a question, then student B has a question. This keeps the students on their toes and paying attention because they don’t know when their questions will come.
Another nice thing about Edpuzzle is you can add as many questions as you want or as little as you want. With this example, the video is less than 2 minutes long so I was able to add 14 questions and not have to worry about running out of time or not getting enough trials because I completely customized it to meet the needs of my students and our time frame. Below the video, you can see all the little dots and that is where the video will pause and pop up the questions.
I love Edpuzzle to target a variety of goals because not only does it save me a ton of time but it takes that reading piece out and allows all the students to work on their own goals with everybody using the same story or video. Hopefully, you too will be able to use this resource to tackle mixed groups with ease and confidence!
Want to learn more? Check out the video and the resources I mentioned for engaging, no-prep and low-prep activities to use with your students this week!