Free Educational Technology Tools: Discussing 3 Musketeers For Your Ninja Students

Educational Technology Tools: 3 Musketeers For Your Ninja Students
Summary: What if I tell you that you can make a magical educational potion out of 3 free tools that can make your teaching outstanding? This is possible only by using Edpuzzle to hold students accountable, Google forms to evaluate their performance, and Badging to reward them.

Edpuzzle, Badging, And Google Forms: Discussing 3 Free Educational Technology Tools

The world of education keeps morphing, changing and that requires constant adaptation to the new rules of a game including empowering students agency on how they should pave their inner teacher. This will call for a new set of soft skills such as the power of managing your teaching experience and picking up the right tools from hundreds that are available in the wild. While several ways have provided on how to informatively choose the right tool, a simple approach would be based on effectiveness and the manner of using these tools. In this article, I walk you through three tools that have the potential to fulfill some of these learning objectives namely: Edpuzzle, Google Forms, and Badging.

1. Edpuzzle

Edpuzzle is a platform that allows you to share videos with students and also embed pop-in questions while keeping track of your students’ progress through some metrics. However, the most salient hallmark of this platform is the ability to check if students have really watched the videos and hence accountability of both teachers and students will increase.

Edpuzzle can be also integrated with Google Classroom where teachers can import their classes from Google Classroom to Edpuzzle. Edpuzzle is another way of kicking off a strong flipped classroom practice by promoting students self-accountability. This is the first variable of our formula here where Edpuzzle is the founding block since it offers an optimal environment for students to set their journey toward learning agency, thanks to the database of curated videos it has in addition to other videos from a famous platform, such as Ted Ed and so on.

Another feature Edpuzzle has, that I found instrumental, is the ability to add a voice note at a specific time, or mute the entire video and include your own voice comment. This may add that personal touch of a teacher to compensate for the face-to-face interaction.

If you want to go further, you may want to finish the certification courses offered by Edpuzzle in order to get familiar with this utility and to learn some foundational principles related to the flipped classroom.

2. Google Forms

Google with its education section, has provided over the years a set of tools designed for the education world such as Google Classroom, and Google Scholar. It has also offered multifaceted tools that can be used for a wide range of purposes such as Google Forms. This tool is basically an online survey platform that allows users to design questionnaires choosing from a wide range of questions and even offering the possibility of giving respondents the possibility to upload different types of files. Added to that, if you activate the quiz option, Google Forms turns from just collecting responses to collecting and grading responses.

With Google Forms come along some extra functionalities ensured by add-ons that can help effectively the interaction between respondents, responses, and the creator of the form. To mention just a few, Choice Eliminator 2 is an add-on that deletes a choice once it’s selected after you set up how many times a given choice can be selected. I use this add-on when I’m assigning every group of students a book to review because I don’t want all students to choose the same book. Certify'em is another add-on which sends out automatic certificates based on a template and on a conditional passing grade. Another nice add-on that can be used with Google Forms is Timify which sets a duration limit for your quiz once the students click on the link you share with them. This add-on also has other premium features such as the ability to take screenshots of the respondent to increase accountability.

So the second variable of our formula is Google Forms that we will use it to assess the performance of students, and how well they did on Edpuzzle platform.

3. Badging

Badging system is a component of gamification where students are given certain badges upon completing certain tasks in recognition for their progress. This gives students a sense of achievement and pride especially if it’s linked to authentic and meaningful rewards. A lot of educational apps have incorporated this principle to boost the engagement of learners and users as well. Teachers can also harness the power of badging and use it in their favor. Badges showcase students' achievement and progress throughout the course, and if the assessment activities have meaning in the world of students' lives, it can even be a proof of accomplishment to be submitted before potential employers, or even to university for those who want to pursue their academic career further.

Hence, this is the third variable of our formula where we highlight the power of acknowledging students progress through meaningful rewards and clear signposts.

The Formula

We have talked about these three variables of flipped learning with the value of Edpuzzle, an assessment with the value of Google Forms assigned to it, and recognizing students achievement with the value of Badging assigned to it. By that, we reach the result that a meaningful students learning experience (symbolized by "SL") would translate as a steady incrementation in flipped learning content quality (where flipped learning is represented by "FL"), a constant reliable and valid assessment (represented by "AS"), and also an authentic badging system (represented by "BG"). To put it into an algebraic expression, we would reach that equation:

Flipped Learning Formula


In this article, we have seen that Edpuzzle can be a nice platform to deliver your flipped learning adventures with the bunch of features it has, especially, knowing whether students have watched the video or not, and the second tool, which is Google Forms, that we can use to assess students' understanding of flipped learning content. Finally, we touched on the concept of Badging, and how it can turn idle students into fully-energized learners, pushing them to quench their thirst to learn new content, while being able to use it in meaningful real-world situation.