“How do you keep students engaged and on task?” I am frequently asked this question when I train teachers on blended learning models. The concern implied in this question is that if I am not working directly with students that they will immediately be off task or disruptive. In actuality, classroom management has never been a big issue for me. In part, I credit my lesson design for keeping them interested, engaged, and on task. I blend a mix of online and offline work that allows students opportunities to self-pace through activities, work collaboratively with their peers, and make key decisions about how they learn.

Nearpod is one tool I use to create interactive lessons that encourage students to pace their own learning and collaborate with classmates. Nearpod lessons are perfect for online stations in a Station Rotation Model or self-paced whole group lessons when I need to meet individually with students.

Nearpod allows the teacher to run “Live lessons,” which are teacher-paced, or “Student-paced.” When teachers select the “Live lesson,” they dictate what students see on their screens. As a teacher moves through a lesson, the slides automatically change on the student device so they are looking at the element of the presentation that the teacher is talking about or focused on. When the teacher selects “Student-paced,” students can navigate through the multimedia, multimodality lesson at their own pace.

Designing a Nearpod lesson is easy. Teachers can mix and match media, link to online websites, and engage students in polls, collaborative brainstorms, and written responses.

There are even “brain break” activities, like a matching game, and a drawing feature to keep kids interested and engaged.

Below is an example of a student-paced lesson I designed for our Of Mice and Men unit that combines video clips, an audio recording of the novel, a poll, open-ended questions, a matching game, and a collaborate board.

Nearpod lessons make engaging stations in a Station Rotation lesson and free me up to meet one-on-one with students to have assessment conversations or provide individualized coaching and support for students who need it.

26 Responses

  1. Hi Catlin!
    Are you using the paid subscription for Nearpod or the free version? I’m trying to justify the $120 price tag for a year, especially since I won’t use it over the summer. Also, do when your subscription runs out, do you lose your saved Nearpods?


  2. Do you know if there is a way for students to save their work? Sometimes they don’t finish a student paced lesson in one sitting. The next time they join the lesson, their work is gone and they have to try and remember where they left off.
    This also makes it so they can’t go back and review the previous day’s work.

    • Hi Jeanette,

      As long as students use the same live code they used when they begin, they should be able to access their work. All student responses should also be in the reports tab. My students frequently begin a lesson in class and return to it without issue.

      Good luck!

      • What I have seen is the same as Jeanette notes. My students have said their saved answers disappear when they log on later.

        • Could this be due to a school internet safety feature that autodeletes or changes something upon login like IP address? Idk but I want to find out

  3. I love Nearpod and used it in my teacher toolbox many times last year. However, admin told me I could no longer use it due to it being non compliant with NY Ed 2D Law. Do you know if that will change any time soon?

  4. When using the self paced version, kids seem like they’re able to go back and change their answers to the quiz questions. Is that correct?

    • Hi Erin,

      Once they finish the lesson, they should not be able to re-enter the lesson and change their answer. However, it might be worth checking their website to double-check.


  5. If I give out the live link that is teacher led and a student is absent. Can they at a later tie go through the lesson independently? Or would I need to also give the self paced link?

      • If I don’t finish a lesson during one class period, how would I go back to where I stopped in that same lesson? Is this possible or would I have to start over?

        • Hi Charese,

          I am not sure how that works if you have the paid version. I believe you would have to restart with the free version and click through the activities you had already done with students.


  6. I assigned a student paced lesson and some students started the lesson and had to leave. They pressed submit but when they came back to finish the lesson none of their work was saved. How do students save their work in Nearpod?

  7. Hi!
    For student-paced, can students see the answers to a quiz after they submit their answers to make sure they are correct?
    Thank you!

  8. Hello Dr. Tucker.

    After students are done with a Nearpod assignment, are they able to see the work they have done? I ask, because if I deliver a lesson this way they will want to go over their notes to prepare for their assessments.

    Thank you for your time.

    • Hi Jose,

      That’s a great question. I know you can download specific student reports and you can share reports with administrators and parents, but I don’t know if there is an easier way to share the reports with students if you have the paid version (I never did). The video below walks through the process of accessing reports and downloading them, but you may want to ask your IT person or contact Nearpod directly to see if you can make the students’ reports easily viewable to them without individually downloading and sharing them.


      Maybe someone else with the paid version can chime in and be more helpful!


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