1. Preparing for the Fall Semester: What Do You Want to Share?
  2. Instructional and Assessment Technology to Prepare for Your Fall Semester
  3. Preparing Teachers for Standards-Based Lesson Planning
  4. Preparing for the Fall Semester: Aligning Instruction to Standards
  5. Technology in Coaching to Decrease Pre-service Educator Stress
  6. Boom-ing into Data Collection
  7. Accessibility Checker for Slides
  8. Technology to Support Executive Function Skills
  9. Preparing for the Fall Semester: The Wrap Up
Two people work together at a laptop computer. One points to something on the screen.

Boom-ing into Data Collection

Author: Samantha Goldman; info@ciddl.org

Special education teachers and related service providers are tasked with developing and maintaining high-quality data to support student progress towards goals. This means that the burden of exploring options to collect high quality data is on educator preparation programs (EPPs) and personnel. Beyond teaching how to write legally defensible goals and maintain high-quality data sheets from them, EPPs must also provide pre-service teachers with the skills to create and/or find resources to assess the assigned goals. Boom Cards™ by Boom Learning are interactive task cards that can be used in the brick-and-mortar classroom and virtually to provide teachers and related service providers with meaningful feedback for progress towards goals.

Interactive What?

Interactive task cards act as digital flashcards that have the option to provide students with immediate feedback, the importance of which is highlighted in the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) that guides the design of inclusive learning experiences for all learners..  Interactive task cards are centered around specific topics, including, but not limited to, math, reading comprehension, vocational skills, social studies. Emergent research has also demonstrated the benefits of immediate feedback as an advantage to game-based learning

So, What’s A Boom Card?

Boom cards elevate the idea of interactive task cards by moving beyond simple question and answer (e.g., multiple choice, short answer) and provide opportunities for drag-and-drop activities and narration. Boom cards can be used for independent assessment, where students are assigned specific cards based on Individualized Education Plan (IEP) goals or they can be used with related service provider’s guidance, depending on how the card is designed. Regardless, each deck of cards students complete using their assigned log-in records data on accuracy, and the provider can even see the exact cards students answered incorrectly for error analysis.  Boom Cards are appropriate across the grade-span from preschool through post-secondary and range in complexity from errorless learning to AP Calculus.

Why Is This Needed?

The simple answer is special education teachers and related service providers need support with data collection. Several reasons are cited as to why special education teachers struggle with it, amongst which is a lack of resources, time, and training. By exploring resources, such as Boom Cards within EPP, pre-service special education teachers and related service personnel are able to begin their careers with added resources for data collection. 

So, How Do I Use This in My Educator Preparation Program?

Within EPP, we need to model effective practices and provide pre-service teachers and related service providers ample opportunities to practice. Within special education classes, they learn how to write goals, develop data sheets, and create related assessments. Pre-created boom cards are one option for pre-service candidates to use to align to students’ areas of need identified in IEPs.

That All Sounds Great, How Do I Use It?

Boom Cards have a video library of support and even include information on how to use them within the context of special education and IEP goal progress monitoring. After creating an account, teachers can look through the store of cards, which includes free and paid options, to determine activities appropriate for students on their caseloads. Cards can be assigned to whole classes or individual students. Students can complete cards independently, where teachers can see reports in real-time, and students are provided with automatic feedback.

Keep the Conversation Going

Have you used Boom Cards in EPP? What other interactive task cards have you used? How else do you see this tool being used by teachers and related service providers? Join the CIDDL community and keep the conversation going! Keep an eye out for the rest of our series highlighting preparations for the upcoming fall semester!