Common Sense Review
Updated June 2016

Kahoot!

Game-like student-response tool can spark competitive fun
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Common Sense Rating 3
  • The projected screen must be viewable to all players; it shows the question, answer choices, and the time remaining.
  • Answer results are displayed in a bar graph, and the teacher can re-show the quiz image for further discussion.
  • Search public Kahoots to find ready-made options that can be used as-is or edited.
  • Create questions and prompts using images, videos, and diagrams along with multiple corresponding responses.
  • Test-drive your Kahoot prior to student use with preview options.
Pros
A compelling and oh-so-easy way to engage kids in pre- and formative-assessment activities.
Cons
Falls a bit short by not offering options for data permanence or the ability to track and identify student growth.
Bottom Line
Effortlessly fun quizzing that can lead to productive formative assessment and student reflection if implemented effectively.
Christie Thomas
Common Sense Reviewer
Classroom teacher
Common Sense Rating 3
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 5

Kahoot's quick pace, suspenseful music, and instant scoreboards keep competition lively and learners engaged. Students will definitely be asking to play again and again, and many will love the challenge of creating their own Kahoots.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 3

Fast, right-or-wrong feedback is provided on students' devices and the class screen. The multiple-choice quizzes may tend to favor memorization, but having kids create Kahoots allows for higher-order learning.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 3

The video, blog, and FAQ page are helpful, but learners will need support beyond the quizzes. There aren't individualized settings to allow extra time or other assistance, particularly for those playing inclusively.

About our ratings and privacy evaluation.
How Can Teachers Use It?

Kahoot can quickly become a go-to for teachers looking for an engaging way to run checks for understanding or exit tickets. Try establishing something like Kahoot Fridays for quick review. You could even have students take over the review process or class discussion by rotating responsibility for making the weekly quiz. Go beyond memorization of facts and allow Kahoot to introduce scenario questions/prompts with multiple decisions; stimulate conversation from the results. Who is really responsible for the death of Romeo and Juliet? Kahoot it out and extend the discussion to classrooms across the state or country. Acclimate students with the site so they may increase their scores after class has ended or perhaps test their skill with students from over 180 countries in Kahoot's Ghost Mode. Don't forget professional development; use the Team mode to pose pedagogical questions and promote food-for-thought discussions among teacher peers. Use Kahoot to break the ice at the beginning of the school year or bond with learning-community members.

For teachers who want to go beyond quizzing and get students engaged in reflective formative assessment, check out these tools and tips.

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What's It Like?

Kahoot, a free student-response tool for all platforms, allows teachers to run game-like multiple-choice answer quizzes in real time. Teachers (as well as students) can either create their own quizzes or find, use, and/or remix public quizzes. Questions, along with answer choices, are projected onto a classroom screen while students submit responses using a personal (likely mobile) device. Questions and polls can contain images and video to help further appeal to all learners. Students' devices display color and symbol choices only; the actual answers must be viewed on the classroom screen. The energized, game-like atmosphere comes from the use of bright colors and suspenseful music. Liveliness in the game or quiz escalates as updated ranks appear on the class scoreboard after each question; personal points data is sent to each device. The Team Mode mixes things up and allows groups of students to cooperate with each other and compete against other teams.

Playing a game of Kahoot doesn't involve an account, only a game PIN from the main screen and a name. However, students can create accounts, and there are some serious privacy concerns. For more, read our evaluation.

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Is It Good For Learning?

With Kahoot, teachers and students can create multiple-choice quizzes as well as polls and surveys that populate on-the-spot data (although this data isn't saved over time). Other than their own scores, students only see the top achievers, so low-performing students won't feel put on display. Quiz questions and polls stimulate quick instructional decisions as well as whole-class discussion, but an open-ended response feature and/or the ability to string together a quiz and a poll in one game would be welcome to aid learning. Tech savvy-students can connect with students from across the globe to play or connect to their peers after-hours to compete for new scores.

Data can be downloaded by teachers (or student creators) and viewed in Excel. These reports can be helpful, but data can't be compared over time for classes or individual students since accounts are not required for students (even though they can, if they choose, create them). For teachers, this means it can be time-intensive to analyze students' growth patterns or individual problem areas using Kahoot quizzes.

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