What is Lumio?
At its core Lumio is a tool for creating online lessons and activities and for your students. You can create lessons and activities from scratch using the tools provided by Lumio or you can use templates provided by Lumio to create activities. Additionally, Lumio lets you import Google Slides, PDFs, PowerPoint slides, and other files to build your own online lessons and easily add interactive activities. There’s also an option to include ad-free YouTube videos in your lessons. Finally, math teachers should take note of Lumio’s integration of Desmos for adding interactive graphing calculators to their lessons.
Lumio activities can be completed by students in and out of the classroom.. You can lead the activity with teacher-paced mode, or switch to student-paced at any time to let students explore and learn on their own.. Either way, students access assigned activities through a class code, from any device with a browser. That class code never changes so it will, hopefully, eventually be memorized by students. And if they don’t memorize it, their devices will store it for them.
In Lumio you can create lessons, games, quizzes (team and individual), virtual manipulatives, graphic organizers, and video-based activities.
For a broad overview of Lumio, watch this short video.
How Does Lumio Work?
To get started, head to www.lum.io and click “Get Started for Free.” You can then sign-in using your Google account or your Microsoft account. Once you’ve signed in you can jump right into making your first activity or lesson. Alternatively, you can take a look at the “getting started” guide provided by Lumio. That guide includes a helpful student view of activities. (Side note, I wish that more companies would provide a student view of their products).
How to Create Your First Assessment Activity
To quickly get a sense of how Lumio will work for you and your students, I’d start by creating a simple formative assessment activity. To do that just click on “Add Activities” in your teacher dashboard. You’ll notice that there are dozens of activity templates. Pick “Response” and that will bring up a template that you can use to create a short set of questions for your students to respond to. These can be multiple choice, true/false, poll, or open-response questions. Once you’ve written your questions you can preview your activity and then save it in your account. All activities that you create are accessed from your teacher library.
To give an activity to your students, simply find it in your teacher dashboard then click “Start.” The next screen will show you the activity in progress along with your students’ responses in real time. Students will see your activity as soon as they enter your class code on the Lumio student log-in page on their computers, tablets, or phones.
Answers to all Response activities that students complete in Lumio are saved in your Lumio account. You can export a record of the responses and scores (if applicable) as a spreadsheet or CSV file.
Watch my short demo here to see how quickly you can create and deliver an assessment with Lumio. The demo also includes the students’ view of a Lumio activity.
Dozens of Lessons and Activity Types
In the section above I outlined making and giving a formative assessment in Lumio. Creating and delivering formative assessments is certainly not all that can be done with Lumio. In fact, a quick look through the “explore” section in your Lumio teacher dashboard will show you dozens of ideas for using Lumio to teach all kinds of lessons. You’ll find that the lesson resources are organized into collections that you can browse through manually or refine according to grade level and subject area. All of the pre-made lessons can be copied directly into your Lumio account where you can use them as written or modify them to fit your needs.
Lessons and practice activities like virtual manipulatives can be student-paced or teacher-paced. And just like the assessment activities, students access lessons and practice activities by simply entering the class code.
A great example of a Lumio lesson with embedded student activities is found in Increasing Motivation. This short lesson contains a dozen slides in which students read some quotes about motivation, match quotes to authors, brainstorm some ideas about motivation, and engage in short discussions. The Increasing Motivation lesson is designed as a teacher-paced lesson for use with a live class (in-person or virtual).
The Increasing Motivation lesson includes a mix of activities for students to complete. You can start the lesson with the title slide, introduce the lesson, then give students time to complete the first activity which is a virtual manipulative activity called “match ‘em up.” In that activity students match pictures of famous people to statements about them. After they’ve completed the “match ‘em up” activity you can then advance the slides to the next talking point, talk with your students, and then move to the next student activity in the lesson.
Watch my short demo here to learn more about finding lessons in Lumio, modifying them, and using them with your students.
Virtual Manipulatives, Graphic Organizers, and More!
As I mentioned above, there are dozens of lesson and activity types that you can create and share with your students through Lumio. Here’s a list of my favorites:
- Shout It Out – A group brainstorming activity.
- Monster Quiz – Students compete in teams to hatch monsters via correctly answering questions and encouraging their classmates.
- Label Reveal – Students learn names of parts of an image or diagram.
- Super Sort – As the name implies, students sort lists into categories.
- Six Word Summary – Students distill a topic into six connected words.
- Frayer Model – This is a digital version of the classic Frayer Model graphic organizer for learning vocabulary words.
- Musical Notes – Digital sheet music paper for students to compose on and or for you to use to create lessons.
- Currency – For elementary school teachers teaching lessons about money, there is lots of virtual currency for you to use as virtual manipulatives in lessons like this one about money.
Compatibility and Accessibility
Students can complete Lumio activities on just about any device. They can use Windows, Mac, or Chrome OS computers to complete activities. They can also use Android and iOS mobile devices to complete activities that you share with them. Basically, if it has a modern web browser, it can be used to complete a Lumio activity.
When you create a lesson or activity in Lumio you have the option to record audio instructions for your students. Your audio recording can be up to five minutes long. Students can play it back as many times as they need while working on an activity in Lumio.
It’s quick, easy, and free to start using Lumio. Just head to the site and sign-in with your Google or Microsoft account and start making your first assessment or lesson.