The best way to learn math is to DO math. Kids need a lot of practice to master a skill, but repetition can be boring. I continually work to make my guided practice time interesting. First of all, engaged students learn better than those who are not. But honestly, I don’t want to be bored either. 😒 The good news is you can easily improve the quality of your guided practice using Boom Learning for free!
Why Boom Cards?
To help keep my class interesting, I use Boom Cards as one of my guided practice activities. There are many reasons why I love using Boom Cards in my class. You can read more about it in this post. Boom Learning has several affordable memberships to choose from. However, during my guided practice I frequently use Fastplay which is available with the FREE membership. In addition, you can find many different Boom decks (sets of cards) for free. You can easily incorporate Boom Learning into your lessons without spending a dime! You gotta love free! 😍
What You Need to Get Started
- internet enabled computer (or other device)
- data projector (for whole group practice)
- free Boom Learning account
- Boom Learning deck for your desired skill
How to Get Started
When using Boom cards for guided practice, begin by getting the FastPin link. First, you will need to login and go to your library. Next, find the deck you want to work with and click the arrow on the Action button.
When the drop down menu appears, select Fast Pin.
A small window will pop up. Click on Generate New Pin.
You will now see a pin and a URL address. Copy and paste the URL into your browser and you will be taken directly to the deck and you can begin playing.
The pin you generated is only good for 5 days. If you want to use the deck after the 5 days are up, no problem! Just go generate a new pin and you’re good to go.
How I Use Boom Cards With My Whole Class
I display the deck through my data projector. As we work through the deck, students answer each problem at their desk. My students usually write directly on their desk with dry erase markers (another way to add fun to guided practice time). After I have checked their responses, one student will either come up to the board and click on the correct answer or go to my teacher computer and select the correct answer.
I absolutely LOVE using the free Fastplay option with my class. Fastplay is great for providing students with meaningful practice. Students receive immediate feedback which is awesome. However, there is a limitation to Fastplay. The only drawback is that Boom Learning will not track student progress with the free teacher account. If you want to track student progress (or take grades 😉), you will need to upgrade your membership. See this post to learn more about the different membership types.
Boom cards are not the only way I liven up my guided practice, but I do use them regularly because they keep my students engaged. If you’re interested in learning more about the deck in the video above, check out this post.
Boom Learning is a tool that you can get a lot of use out of the free version. What do you think? Are you ready to give Boom cards a try?