Microsoft Education Labs has quickly become one of my favourite sites. Here we have a team of people designated to improving education tools within the classroom. Why is this awesome? Let’s checkout one of the tools they’ve created so far.
Microsoft Flashcards uses the newest Microsoft technology to provide a tool that actively engages students in assisting content revision. Why use normal flashcards when you can use Microsoft Flashcards?
MS Flashcards is a silverlight application built on the Azure (cloud) platform which allows you to create, share and study flashcards online. You can create your own unique deck of 300 cards that contain any number of images or text combinations.
MS Flashcards keeps track of all of your cards, The ones you got right and the ones you got wrong, as well as how long since you saw it last. Using this information it then creates a unique algorithm to determine which card should be shown to you next. While Flashcards can be seen as a lower order thinking task, it still is high in engagement. It would also assist in encouraging students to self regulate their learning.
The three different modes allow you to review the flashcards you’ve created. the questions / answers.
- Review will allow you to flip through both questions and answers as present together.
- Study will allow you to think before you “flip” the card to reveal the answer.
- Type it In will allow you to type in what you believe the answer is.
MS Flashcards can be incorporated into any classroom revision session right now. However it would benefit from the inclusion into Moddle software. This would mean that educators wouldn’t be reliant on the student to login / print their report.
At the moment, the inbuilt reporting functions are sufficient for preliminary inclusion. But, don’t forget. It’s still in beta.