Plickers: Where High Tech Meets No Tech

One of my favorite classroom resources is Plickers–a free assessment tool. Plickers was made by a teacher who was looking for a quick, simple way to check student understanding. This assessment tool allows teachers to collect on-the-spot formative assessment data without the need to have students use devices or paper and pencil. Teachers can use this tool with previous planning or on the go as needed.  This tool provides teachers with the data needed to inform their instruction.

My favorite part of this tool is that is gives my scholars the chance to participate and engage in learning without feeling self-conscious because the only one that can see who got an answer right or wrong is me, the teacher.

So how does it work?

Each student is given a card—available via free download from the Plickers website—designed with a unique visual code. The code has 4 sides, lettered A, B, C, and D (see photo). I ask a multiple choice question with options A, B, C and D as answers. Each student holds their card so that the letter they choose to answer the question with is at the top of their card.

The teacher then uses the app on their smartphone to slowly scan the room. The app recognizes the cards, records who the teacher assigned them to, and captures the answer that each student chose.

The results appear live and in real time on the teacher’s device; they can even be projected on a large screen for the whole class to see via the Plicker’s website if that’s useful.

For more information or to start using Plickers in your classroom, go to


Molly Gus is a middle school English-Language Arts teacher at Scranton School, located near Tremont and Ohio City. She has taught in Cleveland for 19 years. Molly received her teaching degree from Cleveland State University with a focus on urban education. Her master’s degree is in the Art of Teaching from Marygrove College. Molly has a passion for teaching and a true love of learning. At Scranton, she is a resident educator mentor and serves as the No Place for Hate coordinator. In her spare time, Molly spends time skiing, swimming and traveling with her husband and two children.