A guide to starting with Kahoot

What is Kahoot?

A quick video guide to Kahoot

Kahoot, despite being almost universally praised by users, is also in the EdTech “space race” and have introduced a new feature “Jumble” in the last year. Kahoot is the subject of semi-evangelical fervour by some of its users, and part of its marketing includes images of videos of excited and happy learners using Kahoot in a classroom setting.

When presenting CPD sessions for other teachers I have found that those who go on to use Kahoot report almost universal approval from their learners. They like that they can use their phones in class, they like the game show approach, and learners at all levels almost always ask to do it again.

Recently I taught a lesson which was observed, and when asked what I thought of it I instinctively replied:  “ a bit boring”.  Reported speech was a big part of the lesson, learners can find it to be quite tricky, and I feel it needs to be slowly and carefully taught, which is why I felt it was boring. However, had I taught it with Kahoot not only would it have been more interesting but it would also have told me how much each of my students understood. Plus it would be saved on the Kahoot system ready for me or other teachers to use.

When I led a professional development session last summer 80% of those attending were using Kahoot in the following week, and continued to be positive about its power to engage students. Students would ask me to do Kahoots and some would appear aggrieved when I didn’t make it a regular feature of lessons.

Now you’ve created your Quizlet or Kahoot what are you going to do with it?

Play it or use it seems to be the obvious answer. However I’m assuming you want to use it so it has the maximum effect. Yes Kahoot and Quizlet can be used as time fillers or to lighten a heavy lesson, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but as a reflective teacher I want to get the most out of it. So , as they say in the adverts – here’s the science part.

Why do the makers of Kahoot think it is effective?

The main claim is based around an approach they call “gameshowification”. This is an extension of gamification – now an expanding concept that can applied to a wide range of activities such as leadership development programmes, changing social attitudes towards victims of famine, encouraging patients to use an inhaler correctly, or even to promote a supermarket. Gameshowification, however is a subset of gamification which uses specific game show elements to engage players and assist them to learn more effectively.

Please use the masterclass video as a step by step guide, pause it frequently and if you can, practice the features on a laptop or PC while watching on your phone or tablet. You’ll learn more that way. While I can’t promise that the one hour and twenty minutes will fly past, it does help you to remember and implement the learning.


More resources

Language Learning With Kahoot! Part 1: Tips & Tricks
Language Learning With Kahoot! Part 2: Tips & Tricks
Language Learning With Kahoot! Part 3: Tips & Tricks   
This includes Jumble the new Kahoot game
Using Kahoot! For Foreign Language Teaching and Flipped Learning
Using Kahoot! in a language classroom