The Five Interactive Question Types

Overview

Pear Deck Interactive Slides are great for stoking creativity and seeking answers, opinions, and ideas in any type of lesson. When you ask a question with Pear Deck, each student answers on their own screen and all of their answers are automatically saved for you. You can then display the answers on the Projector View for the whole class, where responses are displayed anonymously by default. With the Teacher Dashboard (a Premium feature) you can see names next to each answer.

This article focuses on how to create each of the five types of Interactive Slides. We also explore how your students' responses will look when you display them on the Projector during a Pear Deck Session.

Create a slide

First, use the editing tools in Google Slides or PowerPoint Online to put material (like a question, prompt, list, image, etc.) on the main body of the slide. The main body of the slide will show on the Projector and Student View during your presentation. Next, use Pear Deck to configure how students will respond on the Student View.

Here are the five interactive response types you can add to any slide:

  • Draggable™
  • Drawing
  • Text
  • Number
  • Multiple Choice

Pear Deck also has a Website Slide which lets you embed a website for students to explore. It is interactive, but it doesn't allow students to leave a response like the types listed above. Learn about Website Slides.

Keep reading to get a closer look at each Interactive Slide type in the editing and presenting phases.

Draggable™ Response

Students respond by dragging pre-set objects over a slide. For example, they can drag the map pins to the places listed.

  1. Add your question, instructions, and/or image(s) directly onto your slide. Students will be able to see the whole slide and drag objects over it.
  2. Open the Pear Deck for Google Slides Add-on or the Pear Deck for PowerPoint Online Add-in. In the sidebar, scroll down to the Ask Students a Question section. Click on the Draggable™ option.
  3. In the pop up menu, use the drop-down arrows to select the icons you want to use. Click on the color boxes to change the colors and drag the slider to adjust the size. When you're finished, click Update slide.

During your presentation Session...

When you present the slide and collect responses, the default display is the Overlaid Layout, which displays each student's Draggable icon(s) on the same background slide. You can also display each student's answer individually with the List or Grid Views. Responses are always anonymous on the Projector View. Use the grey buttons in the top left corner of your Projector or Dashboard View to change the response layout.

The Overlaid Layout shows all responses at once:

The Grid Layout shows thumbnails of the responses:

Draggables, grid layout

With the Teacher Dashboard, you can see each answer with the student's name. You can also select which type of icon you want to show on the projector. In this example, only the red pins have been selected:

Drawing Response

Students respond by drawing on a canvas or background image. For example, they can graph a line.

  1. Add your question, instructions, and/or image(s) directly onto your slide. Students will be able to see the whole slide and drag objects over it.
  2. Open the Pear Deck for Google Slides Add-on or the Pear Deck for PowerPoint Online Add-in. In the sidebar, scroll down to the Ask Students a Question section. Click on the Draw option.

During your presentation Session...

You can display each student's answer individually with the List or Grid Views, or use the Overlaid Layout to display all of the answers on the same background slide. Responses are always anonymous on the Projector View. Use the grey buttons in the top left corner of your Projector or Dashboard View to change the response layout.

The List Layout, as seen in the private Dashboard View, where you can see also students' names.

The Overlaid Layout

Drawing, graphing slide, overlaid layout

The Grid View

Free Response: Text

Students respond by typing text. For example, ask which character from To Kill a Mockingbird this quote belong to.

  1. Add your question, instructions, and/or image(s) directly onto your slide. Students will be able to see the whole slide and drag objects over it.
  2. Open the Pear Deck for Google Slides Add-on or the Pear Deck for PowerPoint Online Add-in. In the sidebar, scroll down to the Ask Students a Question section. Click on the Text option. That's it!

During your presentation Session...

Students will be able to type into a text field on the Student View. The anonymous aggregate view that you can share on the Projector will show student answers in the form of a feed. You can display them in a list and scroll through it, or you can show answers like a grid.

List Layout

Grid Layout

Text response grid layout

Free Response: Number

Students respond by typing a number. For example, students can solve an equation and leave a number response.

  1. Put your content directly on the slide.
  2. Open the Pear Deck for Google Slides Add-on or the Pear Deck for PowerPoint Online Add-in. In the sidebar, scroll down to the Ask Students a Question section. Click on the Number option. Voila!

During your presentation Session...

Students will be able to type a number into their Student View. You can display anonymous answers in two ways on the Projector View. One is the Grid Layout which shows all of the individual numbers students entered. The second (and default) display is a Box and Whisker Plot. The grey dotted line goes shows the median answer, and a grey box surrounds half of the answers. This way you can quickly see the range of answers and where the majority of answers fall. The thin black lines demarcate high and low answers (unless there are some extreme extreme outliers). You can use the magnifier tool to zoom in and ignore any of those extreme responses that might make it hard to analyze the rest.

Grid Layout

Overlaid Layout (Box and Whisker Plot)

Multiple Choice

Students respond by selecting one of your predefined answers. Depending on the question, it can be a great idea to supply multiple defensible answers to spark discussion. For example, students can fill in the blank with the correct use of the word comer.

  1. Put your content directly on the slide.
  2. Open the Pear Deck for Google Slides Add-on or the Pear Deck for PowerPoint Online Add-in. In the sidebar, scroll down to the Ask Students a Question section. Click on the Choice button.

During your presentation Session...

The anonymous aggregate view that you can share on the projector display your students' responses as a tally. You can also display each answer choice individually with the Grid View.

Overlaid Layout (tally)

Grid View

Text response, grid view

There you have it, the five types of interactive questions you can ask students!