Have you ever been stuck for an idea that can bring a lesson to life? Are you looking for ways to incorporate more digital tools into your classroom? Do you have students who relish a challenge? If so, I may have an idea for you.
I recently ran across a blog post in which an educator shared his excitement about an idea for creating App Dice as a way to encourage creativity with mobile devices. I love the idea of app-smashing (using multiple apps to create a product), but I really like the idea that we can use all of our devices together to create great digital projects.
I also really like the idea of adding a bit of randomness to learning. It often can be the spark that ignites creativity. Often when I am stuck for an idea, I turn to unusual and outside sources to push me in a new direction. Over the years, I’ve found that this is an effective way to engage and challenge students as well.
How Could These Be Used?
To that end I started to imagine all types of digital tool randomizers and how they might be used. Here are a few of the ideas that I came up with:
- Challenge students to explain what they’ve learned with a digital tool selected at random.
- Challenge students to tell a digital story using multiple tools selected at random.
- Challenge students to demonstrate a process using tools selected at random.
- Bring life to an old lesson by introducing a digital tool selected at random.
- Challenge students to persuade and audience using a tool selected at random.
- Challenge students to make a difference to someone they don’t know using tools selected at random.
- Challenge students to create an original work of art using tools selected at random.
- Challenge students to curate resources and share them using tools selected at random.
- Challenge students to find the solution to a problem using communication tools selected at random.
- Challenge students to build an online presence for a fictional or historic character using tools selected at random.
- Connect with the world to discuss topics from your curriculum using tools selected at random.
- Introduce a topic in a new way using a tool selected at random.
- Challenge students to create an epic introduction to themselves using tools selected at random.
- Bring your syllabus or classroom expectations to life using a tool selected at random.
- Challenge students to learn something new, verify its truth, convey it in a compelling manor, and apply it to their lives all with tools selected at random.
Honestly, I think that the possibilities are endless, but you get the picture.
Get Your Cubes Below
My next step was figuring out how to create my randomizer. I settled on the idea of cubes or dice, there is something tactile and visual about them that I like. I started by creating a blank cube template that you can download here:
Next, I used PhotoShop to create various cubes that I imagined would serve different needs and purposes. I have 9 of them so far, but I will add more as I have the time. If there are particular cubes you would like to see, share your ideas in the comments below, and time-permitting, I’ll see if I can get them created. Here’s what I have so far:
Download the Whole Set
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Download Individual Cubes
Let Me Know How It Goes
Feel free to print these out and use them to your heart’s delight. They are relatively easy to assemble, and sometimes just spending some time with scissors and tape will prime the old creative engine. Let me know how you use them, and how things turned out by sharing in the comments below. Cheers!