This week's review is on a website called Poll Everywhere. With Poll Everywhere you can do exactly what the name says: give a poll to anyone, anywhere. Most recently, I've used this tool on all of the 5th grade classes that come to me in order to see what they know about the keywords in Microsoft Excel, such as an example of a cell, row and column. As students answered the questions on the online poll, I was able to view their results in order to know which area of Microsoft Excel I needed to begin my lesson in.
Another benefit to using Poll Everywhere is the ability to give your audience the opportunity to text their votes, yes, just like they do on American Idol. One thing that I've noticed in regards to this feature however is that if you give the audience the opportunity to vote via text then, they lose the opportunity to vote via a simple click function.
Also, when creating a poll, you can choose between open-ended and multiple choice formats. The multiple choice formats obviously allow the user to see the results more clearly.
As a teacher, you can create an account and automatically set up a poll that allows up to 40 participants to respond. For example, if you were to set up a poll that and open it up to responses, only the first 40 participants would be counted. The 41st participant would not be counted and so on, and so forth. The up side is that you can create multiple polls. Say for example you were setting up a poll so that staff members could vote for Teacher of the Year, and you have 58 staff members. The best thing to do would be to split the staff (Pre-K to 2nd grade including Specials and Assistants, 3rd to 5th grade). In this way all participants would have an opportunity to vote, the only hassle would be that you would have to combine the two sets of responses.
Another great feature of Poll Everywhere, is that it only allows one response per user. And, users don't need to register. All they need to do is click on the link that you've emailed, and cast their vote. Their email cache then logs their activity on the Poll Everywhere site, thus forbidding them to cast multiple votes for the same poll.
Below are some of the how-to videos located on the Poll Everywhere website: