Teacher Tech blog with Alice Keeler

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Alice Keeler

Have Students Sketch & Show Sketch in Desmos Classroom

Teaching a lesson with the lesson builder in Desmos Classroom? It can be helpful to have student responses and sketches from one screen appear on another screen. Here is how to make a Desmos Classroom Sketch and Show.
Have Students Sketch & Show Sketch in Desmos Classroom

Desmos Classroom is a free tool to have students interact digitally during a lesson. In this “how to” I will show you how to have students sketch something on one screen of the lesson builder and have it show up on another screen of the lesson builder using the computation layer.

Customizing Desmos Classroom

Desmos Classroom in a nutshell is a series of screens with various types of interactivity. The teacher has a dashboard to view student responses and can pace the lesson.

In a previous post I showed you how to use the computation layer (CL) to customize a lesson with the students name. In this example we will go a step further to include student responses from one screen on another screen.

Provide a Variable Name for the Component

On the screen where students will input their response, be sure to enter a variable name. This should be all one word, no spaces. The variable name needs to be unique, each time you name a component choose a different variable name. Students will not see the variable name, this is simply for referencing at a later time.

On Another Screen

On another screen, add a note widget. Instead of typing your note in the text area, click on the computation layer icon < / >.

Content Sink

You want to “code” the content of the textbox rather than type it directly. This allows the note to be dynamic based on previous student inputs.

Type content:

This tells the computation layer what content the note should display. Your text will need to be enclosed in quotations.

${ }

To add variables to your text string you will want to type a dollar sign and a set of curly braces. Within the curly braces, type the variable name.

I use the variable name for the box where the students entered their name. Anywhere I want the students name to appear, by using the computation layer, I use ${name.content}. You will need to press period after typing the variable name for the options of what feature of the variable you want to display. In this case, the content of what the student entered as their name.

In my example I had the students explain their response to a multiple choice selection. I named the multiple choice component response1

In the note content on another screen, in the computation layer I build the content to be dynamic. Using ${ } with the variable name between the curly braces, I press period for the variable name to indicate the element of the variable I want to display. In this case I want the choice explanation. ${response1.explainContent}

message = when response1.isSelected(1) “${response1.choiceContent(1)}”
when response1.isSelected(2) “${response1.choiceContent(2)}”
when response1.isSelected(3) “${response1.choiceContent(3)}”
when response1.isSelected(4) “${response1.choiceContent(4)}”

otherwise “Choose at least response on the previous screen.”

content:”${name.content}, please review your response: ${message} and your explanation: ${response1.explainContent}.”

Desmos Classroom Sketch and Show

On one screen I want the student to use the sketch widget to draw something. It is important to give the sketch a variable name. I am using sketch1

On Another Screen – Another Sketch

What I want is for the sketch that the student did on one screen to appear on another screen. For this, I will need the sketch widget again. In the computation layer of the new sketch widget, describe the background as a stack of layers of the sketch and the stroke. Start with the sink background: and then use layerStack to describe the layers of the sketch.

background: layerStack(sketchLayer(sketch1.sketch),sketchLayer(sketch1.currentStroke))
bounds:sketch1.bounds

Sample Template

Make a copy of my sample to use as a starter or to view the computation layer:

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