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Why I Mote… 5 Templates and a Resource for your ReMOTE Classroom!

Why I Mote...

Before getting into the perks of this blog entry, I would like to tell you what Mote is and how this edtech tool can help increase engagement and interactions with your students.  Mote is a Google Chrome Extension that is phenomenal for providing feedback to your student within the Chrome environment.  To go even further, Mote allows a teacher to give feedback in the form of an audio recording.  I could go even further and tell you that Mote can translate your audio comments into multiple different languages, provide you with the opportunity to make canned comments, and effortlessly work within the Google Classroom and all the Google Apps for Education, but I promised my son that I would play catch with him before it gets dark outside.

My point is, Mote is more than a feedback tool.  It is an engagement tool, personalized learning tool, and the bridge that helps us connect with our students during remote learning and when teachers and students are away from the brick and mortar classrooms.  Now that the introduction is complete, lets get into what this post will do for you.  In this post, you will be introduced to 5 Mote templates and another resource that will connect you to many other templates that can be used when using Mote.  We have done most of the set-up, all you will need to do is download the free templates, modify them to fit your needs, and add the extension onto your devise!

You can get access to the templates by clicking on the title of the template or by clicking on the template image!

Template #1:  The Mote Pre-Writing Exercise

The Mote Pre-writing Template is amazing resource for students who think faster than they write/type.  I can provide you with an example of me creating this post.  Writing a post is problematic for me for two reasons.  First, my brain is always thinking and I am lucky to take notes on 30% of the things that are going through my head.  The second reason, I have bear paws for hands.  Now picture me using a keyboard.  It's ok... you can laugh and please know I am laughing with you!  For these reasons, I have not enjoyed writing blog posts... until recently.  Now, I use Mote to capture my thinking so I will be able to organize my thinking and go back and wordsmith the sentences after replaying the audio clips.  With this logic and understanding of Mote's full functionality, I decided to create a writing template that may help students get organized in similar fashion.

Template #2:  The Mote Book Review

The Mote Book Review template is a class favorite.  I was working with a teacher that was pressed for time.  The teacher wanted to have an assessment for The Great Gatsby that the students could do in two class periods after the book was read, which would afford the teacher the necessary time to grade the assessment before the end of the marking period.  This template asks student to identify 5 themes from the book, find examples of the themes occurring in the book, and tie these themes into the impact they would have in their life today.  The students loved the format of the assignment and were engaged.  The teacher loved the fact that she could grade these projects while doing other things and that she could leave feedback for the students with the same edtech tool.

***Another teacher used this theme with To Kill a Mockingbird and reported similar engagement from their students!

Did you know that Mote works with Google Slides, Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Forms, and with gmail?  Click HERE to access their awesome YouTube Channel that provides you with demos of how to incorporate Mote into your classroom!

You can access an extended trial (3 months) of the Unlimited version of Mote and other awesome edtech tools by visiting

The Claims, Evidence, Reasoning (CER) Mote Template is probably my favorite of all the templates.  CER works in every content area.  One of my favorite warm-up exercises is to give students a piece of content-related data whether it is a table, graph, or picture and have them complete a CER.  Let me take a second to describe the workflow.

  1. Have students look at the table, graph, or picture until they can come up with the question or topic that the data is representing (Type the answer into the corresponding box)
  2. Type in their claim... a possible answer to the question (don't worry about whether the answer is right or wrong)
  3. Use the data to find evidence that supports or refutes the claim (have students use mote to point out 3 trends found in the data)
  4. Provide reasoning as to how the data supports or refutes the claim.  (Students should use Mote to identify specific data and how it connects with classroom content)

*** I suggest doing this exercise as a class to model the exercise.  Students will get progressively better at the CER process.  This framework works for most open-ended questions and works miracles for AP Test Essays!

Template #4:  The Mote Presidential Map

The idea of being able to annotate maps (or any image) with voice is very appealing to me.  Simply drop a map into a Google Slide and share editing rights with your students.  Think about using a map of the United States to predict elections.  Each student is assigned a state or two and has to do research explaining whether the state is a red, blue, or swing state.  Then students can defend their choice with a Mote to justify their choice.  In the Mote Presidential Map, students are assigned a president and given a slide to fill out information on their assigned president.  They use Mote to provide a tour of their slide.  Finally, they drop an icon symbolizing the president on the map of the United States showing where their president was from.  The presidential icon is linked to their assigned slide!

Template #5:  The Great Mote Debate

Have you ever tried to run a debate in your classroom?  I have and it took me a long time to get it to the point where most if not all students were engaged at the same time.  Once I figured out the process, debates became a powerful learning tool!  Over the past two years (COVID era), debates became a challenge virtually.  Then the Great Mote Debate template was made!  Mote allowed students to work in small groups or independently to debate.

Activity Instructions

  1. Come up with a list of possible debate topics ( I recommend 2 students representing PRO and 2 students representing CON)
  2. Have students agree on the topic, definitions, and parameters of the debate (Use breakouts if remote or a Google Doc if you don't have access to Zoom or Google Meet)
  3. Have students research their main arguments and create Motes under each argument on the template
  4. When finished with the arguments, each position listens to the oppositions arguments and responds with a Mote rebuttal (Some arguments will be copied and pasted as a rebuttal to the opposition's argument)
  5. After rebuttals, each side presents their closing argument
  6. After all debates are finished, I assign students from the other assigned debates to fill out a rubric and assign a winner of the debate

Resource:  The Mote Learning Hub

If you enjoyed the previous 5 templates, I suggest you check out the Mote Learning Hub!  In the Mote Learning Hub, you will find many more templates that you can easily implement into your classroom!

About the author, Eric

Eric Guise is a media specialist and technology coach with more than a decade of experience as a teacher.

Eric was named the 2016 Biology Teacher of Year by the New Jersey Biology Teachers Association and is currently pursuing an EdD in Leadership in Digital Transformation in Educational Technology.

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