Have you heard of Boom cards? If you have, go ahead and grab my free deck on Food Webs and Food Chains. If you haven’t heard of them, keep reading for some great information!
What are Boom Cards?
If you’re like most teachers, you’ve probably used task cards with your students before. They’re really versatile. I use them in stations, for review, for assessments, and for early finishers.
But … let’s be honest. They’re kind of a pain to set up, at least at first. First, you have to make the cards, or purchase them online. Then you have to print them, laminate them and cut them out. I used to put mine on rings, which meant hole-punching them too. Once you had them set you were good to go, but they’re pretty work-intensive at first.
Thanks to the wonder of technology, Boom cards have changed all that!
Boom cards are task cards … but they’re digital and interactive! The obvious advantages, of course, are no printing, no laminating and no cutting! And they’re even self-grading!
A set of cards is called a “deck.” Decks can have any number of cards in them. You’ll find decks for all grade levels, subjects, and topics, and the cards can be used on any mobile device or computer. You can preview 4 cards from any deck for free. Click here for an example.
As a teacher, you can set up a free account and download decks into your library to use immediately. You can also take it a step further and upgrade to a paid account. Click here to see the membership options.
Paid accounts, which are very reasonably priced, allow you to get reports on how your students are doing with the cards. This is a great feature if you’d like to use them for quick assessments.
Using Boom Cards In Your Classroom
There are really a ton of things you can do with a free account. One of the best features, in my opinion, is that you can assign decks to individual students in your class. How great is that for differentiation!
After you set up your account, you can do a search for free decks (there are a ton of them!) or purchase a deck. Once you download it, it will appear in your library. From there, you can:
- assign the deck to your class or individual students
- hide certain cards that you might not want to use
- add the link to the deck into your Google classroom or other management system
- set up a station with a few computers for students to play the deck
- assign them as homework
- use it as part of a Blended Learning lesson
If you don’t want to bother setting up a class and just want your kids to use the deck right away, you can do that too. Just share the link with your students and they can use the deck on their own devices.
If you do purchase a paid membership you’ll have access to the student reports. Here you can see students accuracy level, how many times they’ve played each deck and how long it took them. It’s a great way to quickly see which students are struggling with certain concepts.
There are a lot of videos on the Boom Learning website that will walk you through how to set up your classes, how to use Boom cards with Google classroom, how to use reports, etc. They also have a Youtube channel that’s called Boom School, where they have videos to show you how to do just about anything!
I’ve started creating Boom cards along with my other resources, both on Boom Learning and Teachers Pay Teachers. As I mentioned earlier, I have a free deck for you to try out on Food Webs and Food Chains. Just click the image below to download it!