How I use Mentimeter
I use Mentimeter in a few different contexts. I find it especially useful as an icebreaking tool at the beginning of a session as well as to capture the ongoing mood and knowledge retention of the entire cohort. I often use it at the beginning of the class as a kind of ‘entry ticket’ to allow for a calm and engaging beginning where everyone can arrive and share questions before having to speak.
When it comes to question types, I like to start with a general question to capture the mood of the moment using the slider scales or multiple choice answers. Something like: “How are you feeling today on a scale between ‘let me out of here’ and ‘I’m super pumped and want to get started’?”.
As an entry ticket, I ask students to self-assess how well they understood the content in a slider or ranking format.
I often ask students to build a word cloud around one of the topics of the readings or lecture recordings, in the style of “What do you think of when you hear…?”. I might ask a question or two about the actual content in form of multiple choice or open-ended questions – often open-ended questions where they have to apply a concept or give an example. It is also useful to get a sense of what the entire class is thinking about something, like a mini-class statistic that can then be used as a platform for a discussion.
The last question is usually a Q&A-style slide where I ask students what questions they have for today’s sessions or if they want me to go over a specific content point again before we start the tutorial.
I give students the Mentimeter link as soon as they come into the room so they can see the answers in real time. This works online and in physical spaces. It’s a good way to bridge these awkward first minutes while we wait for everyone to arrive and if students are a bit too shy to make small talk.
Most students are very honest and candid on Mentimeter because they like the anonymity. Also, use of informal language on both sides is quite effective in engaging everyone.
Tips for using Mentimeter
I wouldn’t go past five slides and wouldn’t give too much time for the entire activity so it doesn’t get too boring. However, I show students that I care about what they are writing, and I implement the feedback at the same time. For example, if a text was perceived as too difficult, I will provide a reading guide the next time; or if a concept is unclear, I can further explain and provide more examples.
I start with a general question to capture the mood of the moment using the slider scales or multiple choice answers. Something like “How are you feeling today on a scale between ‘let me out of here’ and ‘I’m super pumped and want to get started’.