Myriad Prompts!

When I opened up ActivePrompt (real name TBD) last week I wasn’t sure what to expect.  I thought it’d be really useful for prompts like the one I showed in the video.  “Where do you think [x] is?”

A bunch of people thought similarly:


Where do you think the lines intersect?

Where should the cafeteria go to be equally far away from all of the schools?

Where’s South Dakota?


I was surprised by some really different tacks, though!

Spot the mistake on this test!

Which part is the prettiest? Ugliest? Which part represents the government?

This is one of my favorites, and most different from what I had in mind:

Cooperate with classmates while watching the overhead projector with all the dots on it, and create two parallel lines. Then, create a star shape.

On this grid the students will have to invent a way to communicate with each other about shapes, relative distances, etc.  All of their dots are totally anonymous.  This is a community building activity as much as it is a math lesson, and vice versa!

The follow up challenge is “create a star shape!”  Holy moly – I’d love to see that class.

Multiple choice – which set of coins come next?

Whoa, TIME: where’s the next dot going to be? I love this one

When the laser bounces off this mirror, where on the wall will it be? I bet you get a great spread of guesses here



I’m so pleased to see such a diversity of uses already – I honestly never expected them.  This is all totally open source – you can see all of the code at and I will happily accept offers to help.  A few people have already started playing with it, but you can see there are a few active issues – it doesn’t work on the iPad, apparently, and when the picture is too big it gets a little messed up.

Keep ’em coming, and let me know if you want to help – I’ll probably keep working on the code, because it’s fun, but I’m really eager to help YOU work on the code, because realistically we can get a lot more done together.

Have fun, and if you use this in your class, please post back here to tell us how it goes!

10 thoughts on “Myriad Prompts!”

  1. “Holy moly – I’d love to see that class.” Good news, I filmed it! I’ll blog about it soon. It went better than expected. I didn’t let them see the dots BTW. They had to do it blind and I let them check their answer when they felt like they had it. They picked an origin and decided on coordinates just like expected. My head almost exploded it was so cool.

    Haven’t had the time to look at the code yet, but I want to. I am definitely a beginner, but I want to learn and get better.

  2. Very cool stuff!

    Does ActivePrompt work on tablets / iPads? I have a class set and this could be something cool for students to use collaboratively.

    Currently, using Apple TV, students can mirror their iPads over the projector to share… but cannot edit the same document/file/etc.

    Awesome stuff!

  3. I am smitten with this idea. I would love it if I could leave the activeprompt for my students to try at home and then start the discussion in class with an image with all of their guesses without them having to leave the window open. Once they close the window, their red dot disappears. I would really like to have the collection of red dots stay there. Thanks for creating this awesome tool.

  4. I was trying this in class and my students were using smart phones. They were not able to drag the dot? Am I missing something? Any suggestions?

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