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Pros: Attractive user interface makes for easy assigning, submissions, and feedback; user-created resource bank lightens workload.
Cons: Some limits to how students can demonstrate understanding of concepts; some features may not work on all devices.
Bottom Line: Students will appreciate this 21st-century take on worksheets, and teachers will love all the different options for creation and assessment.
With Wizer, teachers can create digital worksheets by using different types of questions, incorporating images and videos, and even recording directions. Teachers can ask students to label images, categorize information, respond to open-ended and multiple-choice questions, or respond to video content. Flip the classroom by following videos with open response questions to be discussed in class. Create cloze reading passages to assess reading comprehension and vocabulary skills. Go paperless (finally!) while still giving students practice labeling organ systems on the human body or countries on a world map. Ask students to sort anything from polygons to parts of speech, or teach younger students social studies concepts by having them draw a picture of their community.
Worried about reinventing the wheel? Reduce your workload by using and modifying worksheets available in the community of Wizer users. Get even more options for differentiation according to your students' strengths and challenges in the paid version. The tool has some limitations in terms of student collaboration and teacher feedback, and the audio failed to load on three devices. Also, it would be great to see an import option for worksheets and features to promote student creation. That said, Wizer continues to make improvements based on user responses.
Wizer is a website where K-12 teachers can create augmented digital worksheets in any subject area. Once users sign up for an account, they can immediately start browsing or creating worksheets. Users choose a template and then add a title along with written and/or voice-recorded instructions and create their questions based on videos, images, charts, tables, and more. Once teachers save, preview, and assign the worksheet, students can access them on computers or mobile devices via LMS logins (Google, Edmodo, Microsoft), a class code, or a link to a URL. Teachers can opt to give students a choice of response format, such as verbal, written, or drawn. As students complete the assignment, they have to save it before handing it in, as Wizer doesn't save automatically, but Wizer will remind them to review answers before submitting them. Teachers can then score the open-ended questions and review the objective ones. They can also mark favorite answers, provide written or verbal feedback, and see how long the student took to submit the assignment. Once all assignments have been graded, students can review the feedback but cannot make changes.
The paid version of Wizer allows students to customize their profile by adding strengths, passions, preferences, and challenges, and teachers can use this information to form groups, personalize assignments, and create differentiation rules. This feature will take some work to learn, but it could be an excellent way to monitor student progress.
Worksheets often get a bad rap as a pedagogical tool, but with careful instructional design, teachers can create meaningful, engaging learning experiences for their students. Wizer allows teachers to create augmented worksheets with multiple activities in one place and give students options for visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learning modalities. The ability to record voice directions along with written ones can be a huge benefit for English language learners or students with disabilities. Also, a teacher's ability to see how much time students spend on assignments can provide valuable insight into student effort and achievement.
It's true that there are limits to what worksheets can promote in terms of student creation; however, they can be a benefit for teachers who want to quickly assess understanding of specific concepts. This tool is limited in its capacity to promote formative assessment, and it would be great if students could create their own worksheets. Still, Wizer can be a great tool for edtech veterans who want to try something new; it can also be a starting place for newer adopters. Many teachers feel intimidated by the latest and greatest tools, but worksheets are familiar. This tool may encourage reluctant teachers to wade into edtech and improve instruction by creating digital assignments that promote engagement, creativity, and critical thinking.