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Knowing your students’ likes and interests is a common goal for today’s teacher. Whether you’re taking real-time assessments, or encouraging your students to get to know one another, you need exciting and interactive tools to achieve that. That’s where my  list of ideas for “ice-breakers” may come in handy for you. Bring in the technology and say goodbye to awkward games.

Nearpod 20151. Know Nearpod? Yes, the amazing collaboration presentation app. What if your real-time assessment was getting to know your students, and allowing your students to get to know each other.

Create a simple Nearpod presentation, asking questions like “What’s your favorite sport?” “What’s your favorite hobby?” “Do you have a nickname?” etc. (All the typical get-to-know-you discovery questions.) Have all your students join your presentation, and after each question give them time to write or draw the answer. Then, projecting your teacher view, you can instantly share the answer with the entire class. Giving them a visual identifier with their classmate. Or share just a few answers for each question and push it out to all the students.

Neat huh?


paper 532. Using paper to digitally tell their story. Paper53 is a fundamental app, it’s free, and has so many creative uses. It’s not just for drawing! With their free tool kit and brush set, a student’s creativity is limitless. Give your students a few moments to write or draw their summer, or what they hope to learn this year… keep the ideas flowing! Then they can share, print, or load to Google Drive for endless discussions.

Want to take this idea to the next level? Create your own drawing template that you want them to use, throw it out into the Mix Community and have your students grab your drawing and build from there! *Requires account.


popplet lite3. Find common interests. Popplet is another fundamental app you need in your bag of tools. Create a Popplet board, add a few of your interests as the main popple, then add your name off of that. Ask your students to join your Popplet and have them create popples of interests. They’ll soon find themselves adding their name to someone else’s interest popple… discovering similar interests with another classmate!


Although this is a short list, the ideas can continue from here. Other apps/websites with ice-breaking potential are:

ImovieiMovie (A great summer project!)



Explain Everything Explain Everything



tACKK Tackk



Skitch icon Skitch



and many more!

Happy 2015-2016 school year!

About The Author

Design and Marketing Manager