We have started adding Desmos classroom activities for a number of topics. Our collection of activities is still growing, but where available, you will find links to these in the expandable Teacher resources boxes under a topic’s set of slides.
Desmos classroom activities allow you to set work to students and see how they are performing, either in real time, or at some later point. Here is a view of the teacher dashboard (on the left) as a student works through a task (on the right). Note that our tasks contain randomised questions. Therefore, for any given tasks, students in general will get similar, but not identical, questions to each other. As a teacher, you can quickly see the type of questions that students are seeing, but you can also dig deeper to see the specific question that each student sees. Whilst you can monitor students’ progress on a question-by-question basis during a live lesson, you don’t have to do this in real time. You can simply check how students fared at a later time, if you wish. This makes these activities suitable for use as homework tasks.
To set one of the classroom activities, you need to log in to Desmos. You can sign up for a free Desmos account, or you can sign in with your Google account if you prefer. Once signed up, you can create classes if you wish, but you can also set work to students without setting up classes. Depending on which option you choose, the student experience will be slightly different.
Assigning to a class vs Single Session Codes
When clicking the dropdown arrow in the green “Assign” button, you will see two options: Assign to Your Classes and Single Session Code.
If you choose to assign to a class, students will need to log in to Desmos to complete tasks. They may sign up to Desmos or they may log in using Google account. (The latter is ideal if your school is a Google Classroom school.) After you create a class, you can get students to join the class using a an invitation code that they’ll only need once. The advantage of setting up classes is that when you assign new activities to a class, students will see these new activities assigned to them when they log in. If you plan to set a Desmos classroom activity for homework, or if you plan to use these activities regularly, you will probably prefer this method. Find out more.
The alternative is to use a single session code. The advantage of this is that students can complete the Desmos classroom activity without needing to log in to Desmos. You simply share either a code that students type in at student.desmos.com, or a link that takes students directly to the activity. The main disadvantage is that you’ll need to generate a Single Session Code and share the code or link for each activity you want students to complete. Single session codes are ideal if you don’t want students to ever have to log in to Desmos. They are also handy if you only occasionally plan to use Desmos classroom activities.