Common Sense Review
Updated June 2015


Tons of questions make CCSS-aligned exit ticket creation easy
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Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating
Not Yet Rated
  • Zeal lets kids learn about key ELA and math topics and take CCSS-aligned quizzes.
  • Quizzes cover key ELA and math concepts; here, kids answer questions about point of view.
  • The teacher dashboard is easy to use.
  • Students can compete against each other in game mode.
  • Teachers can view students' quiz results in real time.
  • Student logins are created for distribution
Solid CCSS-aligned questions, quizzes, and a fun game mode let teachers gauge students' learning and track their progress.
There's no blog or social media site to go to for more info, and there's no built-in support for ELL students or kids with special needs.
Bottom Line
A neat, highly useful tool that won't transform CCSS instruction, but removes some of the pain of tracking student progress and differentiating instruction.
Stephanie Trautman
Common Sense Reviewer
Classroom teacher
Common Sense Rating 4
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 4

Students will stay engaged in the CCSS-aligned assessments and will thoroughly enjoy the collaborative class challenges. It’s easy for teachers and students to see progress and comprehension, and the site is easy to navigate.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 4

Teachers can personalize instruction, track student progress, and engage students in class competitions. Students and teachers receive feedback that tracks progress and shows where extra help is needed.

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

Students can obtain help and see scores immediately, and teachers get immediate feedback, too. Zeal does not have a lot of other support outside of the site. A blog or FAQ section would be helpful.

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

Assign CCSS assessments to classes and move them through instruction, assessment, and review of the standards-based learning. The real-time data that comes through the teacher dashboard is gold -- it allows you to see who is achieving success and who needs help, driven down to specific questions and topics students struggle with. Experiment with the game mode in your classroom: If it suits your students and your lesson plan, you might promote a little competition by projecting the interactive game and leader board on a projector and challenge kids to race and play against one another.

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What's It Like?

Zeal offers more than 10,000 ELA and math Common Core State Standards-aligned quiz questions. The developers claim that these questions can help teachers never create another exit ticket again, since everything's built right in. As students take quizzes, kids and teachers get instant feedback on progress and kids face questions based on their performance on all the questions they've answered so far. As students answer each question, they can check to see if their answer is correct. If it's incorrect, they have the option to hear an audio hint with an explanation on how to approach the subject or problem. The teacher dashboard updates with students’ progress as they complete questions in real time. Teachers can have students log into Zeal and take the assessments, and then teachers can use this data to see if they need to reteach something. In addition to solo study, teachers can shift the tool into game mode, where students and their student-created avatars compete against one another. If a student misses a problem, the game will go into a practice mode for them; once they show mastery, they can come back into the class game.

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Is It Good For Learning?

With its thousands of CCSS-aligned assessment questions, Zeal is a quick go-to tool for checking student understanding of grade-level standards. While it's not exactly transforming how material is taught or learned -- students are just answering questions on quizzes, after all -- it's got great practical value for the day-to-day challenges of CCSS instruction. Teachers and students can get simple, at-a-glance updates on where they stand with each standard. Zeal lets teachers dig deep into student work to analyze their success and any gaps in their understanding that may need more direct, one-on-one instruction. It's also a great tool for professional development for teachers: Use Zeal as a scaffold to learn the CCSS yourself and make sure students are getting exposed to each skill at their grade level. Overall, this is a kind of learning that tends toward the traditional, but it's thoughtfully built and can help boost kids' skills in line with CCSS.

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See how teachers are using Zeal