Plickers magnet assessment, or “plagnets” for short, have been taking the Physical Education community by storm these past few months. Magnet assessment as an idea came from Joey Feith (PhysicalEducator.com), and he got the idea from teachers using SOLO Taxonomy where students track their learning via cognitive understanding rubrics. Students would put initials on chart paper, or place sticky notes as they advanced through the learning mini-objectives or targets. Joey decided to replace sticky notes with magnets, which was a wonderful idea! I fell in love with using the magnets, and my students were never more engaged than when they took control of their learning progressions.
However, the trouble was collecting the data (either for report cards or just for tracking student progress). I decided to shrink Plickers assessment cards (which have been used for years as formative assessment checks) and attach them to magnets so that I could collect the learning evidence easily during each class. Students simply place the side up (ABDC, 1234, or words like Joey uses) that matches their learning throughout class (depending on the design you choose). It generally ties into standards-based grading or “developing, almost there, got it, and wow.” You then scan and archive for evidence of learning.
The plagnets can be used on magnetic whiteboards, metal doors, metal sheets command stripped to a wall, or even with magnetic paint on walls and other surfaces. They even sell rolled up magnetic sheets that can be used as portable systems. The plagnets can be created many ways, from easily printing onto magnetic paper and cutting out to shape, all the way to crafting them onto round discs and gluing magnets onto the back with mod podge or lamination on the front.
They can be used like traditional Plickers cards for formative checks for understanding, or as exit tickets to assess student learning or feelings about class that day. But to me, the real power of plagnets is unlocked with the use of self-guided progressions where students gain autonomy, mastery and purpose in tracking their own learning. An example video can be found here where students went through jump rope progressions using ninja belt gamification (including giving students a choice in their path to success).
This is my 45-minute webinar on all things plagnets from the online PhysEdSummit 2017: https://youtu.be/1FqbGrt2anc
For those short on time, here’s a short 2-3 minute tutorial to get you started: Here’s my short tutorial video:
Here’s a link to our global shared PE Google Drive Plickers Magnet folder for various designs and usage ideas: goo.gl/ZssDis
The above photo is a plagnet design from Tanner Roos, allowing teachers to use A-D, 1-4, and the words as an all-in-one option.
Please get in touch with me if you have any questions about getting started with plagnets!
Also check out my new online Professional Development course called Gamification in Physical Education. Learn how to maximize student engagement with gamification, use gamification as an assessment tool, and create your own gamified activities, lessons, units, or even full-year themes.
About the Author:
Mike Ginicola is currently in his 20th year teaching Physical Education and Health at Nichols Elementary in Stratford, CT. He was recently the 2016 recipient of the CT PTA Teacher of the Year Award. He also won a CTAHPERD outstanding program award for flipped dance learning via his YouTube channel. He likes to travel and present on PE activities and current education trends. Mike loves to innovate and use as much technology as possible. Follow Mike on Twitter @PhysEdDepot and also his P.E. YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/nicholswinterfest