Lizard Point Quizzes

...discovering the world we live in

Introducing Super Strict Mode - there's no help for you here!

Sep 222018

 

We've had a handful of requests from teachers recently, who want the Start Over Button removed from strict test mode, because when students are taking a test, they might be inclined to Start Over when they see it isn't going so well... 

To address this concern, we've created the new Super Strict Mode that has the following properties:

  • no Start Over (or Skip) button
  • no scoring information is shown until the quiz is over
  • no feedback whatsoever during the quiz... ie "Correct" and "Sorry, that's incorrect" are not shown
  • no list of places included in the quiz... you won't see what questions will be asked before the quiz starts

Some important notes about Super Strict mode:

  • It is only available on customizable quizzes, and only to Teacher Plus and Individual supporter accounts.
  • There is nothing to stop the student from reloading the page or re-navigating to the quiz in order to start again. But by removing all feedback on the results, the student will have less reason to suspect he is not doing well and want to start over.

 What a Super Strict quiz looks like

We have set up a sample Super Strict quiz for you to try: Canada Provinces and Territories - Super Strict Mode example (link opens in a new window)

When you try the sample quiz, take note of the following differences, which are circled in the screen capture:

Customize quiz mode options
 screenshot showing the help that has been removed from the quiz
 

 

  1. The list of places ("This quiz asks about...") is not shown. (But if you create the quiz, you and you alone will still see the list, because it will help you to see what you included in the quiz without having to either do the quiz or go back to edit mode.)
  2. The usual scoring information is not displayed - you'll no longer see how many points you've earned as you do the quiz
  3. There's no feedback. A superstrict quiz does NOT tell you "Correct", or "Sorry, that's incorrect".

     

    How to create a Super Strict quiz

Just go to the "customize a quiz page", and look for the Quiz Mode buttons, and pick Force Super Strict mode:

Customize quiz mode options
 screenshot showing the Quiz Mode options



As with all forced modes, forcing a quiz into Super Strict mode is only available to those with Teacher Plus accounts or Individual Supporter accounts. So, if you see the forced mode options but you can't click on them, it probably means you're not signed in, or your account isn't eligible for this feature. 

Customize quiz mode options not available
 screenshot showing the Quiz Mode options are not available

 

Where the results are saved

If you're looking at your own results, or the results of your students, please note that the scores for Super Strict mode are labeled as Strict scores. The strict score in the screenshot below is the score from the sample quiz of the Canada provinces and territories, in super strict mode.

Customize quiz mode options not available
 screenshot showing the superstrict score in the Strict column

 

Why are the scores for Super Strict mode labeled as Strict mode? Because it's not really a new mode - it's more of a mode upgrade, like getting fancy rims on your car. We didn't want to FORCE everyone to use the new features of super strict, so we've left it as an option. At some point in the future, we may be asking our users, do you even want the old-style strict mode? Or should we make Super Strict the standard for strict testing?  

Our new Travel and Tourism quizzes

Aug 162018

We've just launched a handful of new quizzes designed for Travel and Tourism students, but anyone can use them. The questions cover a variety of types of destinations: cities, popular sites, landmarks, national parks, resorts, beaches, natural wonders etc. Check the end of this post for a sample customization of a USA quiz that is more geography focused.

These quizzes  require you to know the country, state or province where a destination is located.  So, for example, in the USA tourism quiz, if you are asked "Where is the Empire State Building?", you would answer by clicking on the state of New York. 

The tourism quizzes offer a feature we've never offered before - a destination can be in more than one place. So if we ask you where the Four Corners Monument is, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado and Utah are all acceptable answers. And we'll show you that in 2 ways:

1. When you click on the "show me" button, all acceptable answers are highlighted, as the following screen capture shows:
screen shot showing multiple locations with the show me button

2. When you click on a correct answer, the answer response lists all the acceptable answers, as shown in the following screen capture. The user answered with Utah, and the response from the quiz was, "Correct, the Four Corners Monument is in Utah. (Multiple answers accepted: Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah)"

screen shot showing response with multiple acceptable answers

 
So far, we've created tourist quizzes for Africa, the Middle East, Canada, the USA, the CaribbeanCentral America and South America. Quizzes for Europe, Asia and Australia/Oceania will be coming soon.  Look for the airplane icon in the navigation to easily spot these new quizzes.  You can see 4 tourist quizzes in this screenshot from the Americas navigation:

airplane icon beside a tourist quiz in the navigation
 sample navigation with airplane icons indicating the tourist quizzes



The destinations asked in the quizzes were based on the learning needs of a particular tourism program at a Canadian college. But all the tourist quizzes are customizable, so that you can select from just the destinations you need.  If you are an instructor of a Travel and Tourism program and you'd like some destinations added to the quizzes, please send us an email. Eventually, we hope to make it easy to add destinations yourself, but in order to satisfy an immediate need, we had to launch the quizzes with a fixed set of questions.

We realize that Travel and Tourism students need to know a lot more than just where the destinations are, but these quizzes will help with the "where", and free your mind up to learn the rest of the details you need to know for your program.

And now, for the example I mentioned earlier - here's a customization of the USA tourist quiz on mountains, caves and natural wonders.  It's just a quick 11 question quiz but it serves as an example of how you can create a geography quiz that isn't necessarily tourism related.

 

Forcing a quiz into Test mode - new option for customized quizzes

Aug 122018

Customizing a quiz gives you the option of selecting whether a quiz is forced into Strict Test mode (with the other modes completely turned off). This is a great feature for testing your students - they don't get hints (like "No, that's France") and they can't click a button to see the labeled map. They also can't switch the mode, or misunderstand in what mode you wanted them to take the test.

At the request of a teacher, we now offer another option: to force the quiz into Test mode.  Test mode is similar to Strict Test mode, except in Test mode, you still get three tries to answer - but still, no help or hints. This is a good testing option for younger students, beginners, or to prepare for the Strict test at a later date.

Forcing a quiz into test mode or strict test mode is done on the quiz customization screen. The following screenshot of customizing the US state capitals quiz shows, circled in red, where you would select the quiz mode you want. 

Note: Forcing a quiz into test mode or strict test mode is only available to premium users (those with a Teacher Plus account or an Individual supporter account)

 Screenshot of the quiz customization screen showing where you select a mode to force Screenshot of the quiz customization screen showing where you select a mode to force


For comparison of the options, have a look at these 3 US state capital quizzes that have been customized with different mode options:

If you come across a quiz that has a forced mode, you can see what mode it is in, as in the following screenshot. The Quiz mode below the buttons shows that it is test mode. If you hold your mouse over (or tap on) the question mark icon, you will see an explanation of test mode.

 Example screenshot of a forced quiz with the mode displayed Example screenshot of a forced quiz with the mode displayed


All quizzes that are customizable (found on this listing) have the new option to force the quiz into Test mode.  Happy testing!

Water quizzes - new stuff!

Aug 082018

We've recently enhanced some of the water quizzes to give you more water features to be tested on, as well as more water quizzes that are customizable.

On the World Water quiz, we've added 10 new water features:

  • the Southern Ocean, Weddell Sea, Gulf of Carpentaria, Great Australian Bight and the Coral Sea can be answered on the world map
  • the Panama Canal and the Great Salt Lake can be answered on the North America map
  • the Strait of Magellan can be answered on the South America map
  • the Suez Gulf and the Gulf of Aqaba can be answered on the Middle East map

That means there are now 225 water features on the World Water quiz... but this quiz can be customized to pick just the features you want to be tested on. The World Water quiz can currently be customized by anyone with a free account, but come September 1, 2018, you will need to have a premium account to customize this quiz.

 Screenshot of a quiz with world map showing Weddell Sea Screenshot of the quiz showing the Weddell Sea, one of the recently added water features


There's a new and improved version of the North America water quiz  which has the Great Salt Lake and the Panama Canal, along with many rivers in Canada and the US.   And it can be customized.

The South America rivers and lakes quiz  includes the Strait of Magellan, and is now customizable

The Middle East water quiz can now be customized, and the 2 new water features (Suez Gulf and Gulf of Aqaba) that were added to the world water quiz have also been added here. 

 

 

View and download ALL your students' scores

Nov 012017

In July 2017, we launched a trial feature for Teacher Plus accounts: the ability to view all your students' scores (not just the best and most recent scores). The feedback from teachers has been extremely positive, and the extra data on our servers hasn't caused any issues, so we're happy to report that we will continue to offer this feature.

Here is an example of the old-style summary information you would get. You can see that the student has done the Central Africa: countries quiz 4 times, and you can see his best score for each mode (practice, test, and strict). You can also see the date and score of the last time he completed a quiz, which was in strict mode. But you can only see 3 scores, and that he tried 4 times. 

student scores summarySample summary result for a quiz

 

With the new Student scores details feature, you get the results of every quiz your student completes.  With the new details, you can clearly see that the student has done the quiz once in each of practice and test mode, and twice in strict mode. You also get the exact score (not just the percentage), and the date and time each quiz was completed. 

 

 student scores detailsSample detail result for a quiz

 

 

You can also filter your results by class, quiz, test mode, and date range.

 filter results by class, quiz, test mode and date The options to filter your results

 

You can also download the scores to a CSV file.

Please visit the demo of how these features work if you would like to play around with the filter and the download.

 

 

Water water everywhere... now you can customize it

May 292017

Looking for a water quiz? We've got quizzes. We've got water. You've come to the right place.


We've just launched a customizable quiz with over 200 bodies of water (oceans, seas, bays, gulfs, straits, channels, lakes, rivers...) from all over the world.  The base quiz (before customization) is a quiz that currently has 215 questions. We didn't think anyone would want to do a quiz with that many questions, so we didn't put it in the site menu, but you can try the full world water quiz here.

If you'd like to see a customized water quiz in action, I set up a short straits and channels quiz with just 14 questions. I realized afterwards that I missed the Strait of Magellan, but I'll try to get that added in later. Word of warning - just because it's short doesn't mean it's easy!

If you'd like to create your own customized water quiz with just the questions you want to include, we've set it up initially as an "everyone has access" feature - anyone with an account (free or premium) can customize the world water quiz.

Go ahead and try it! Create your own customized water quiz.

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Russia - that big, confusing country : simplified!

Feb 162017

Russia has been in the news a fair bit lately, and perhaps you have decided it is time to learn a little bit more about Russia. Perhaps you noticed the news recently - that over a course of several days (February 6 - 15, 2017), five Russian heads resigned... heads of the the  republics of Karelia and Buryatia, and the governors of  Novgorod and Ryazan oblasts, as well as the governor of Perm krai. And then your next thought, without a doubt, was, "Wait, what are these oblasts, republics and krais anyway?"

So here you are, about to find out. 

Russia, officially known as the Russian Federation, is made up of 85 federal subjects - republics, krais, oblasts, autonomous okrugs,  federal cities and an autonomous oblast. It can be pretty confusing to understand the differences, and keep straight what's what and where.

So I've brought you a couple of resources that might help you out a bit. 

First up, a youtube video by VanDeGraph:  Russian Federation Explained. Watch this video to learn the history of how the various federal subjects came to be, and what their primary differences are in terms of powers.

 

 

If you want to memorize the names of the federal subjects and where they are, you could watch this next video. It's cheesy and annoying, and you probably STILL won't know where all the federal subjects are, but you will hear how to pronounce their names... and the chorus is catchy. 

 


If you prefer reading to watching videos, this Wikipedia article explains the federal subjects

Chances are, you still can't name them all or place them on a map... 'cause c'mon, there are 85 of them and it's no easy task. So we've turned our Russian: federal subjects quiz into a customizable quiz.  This way, you can pick which ones you want to start with, and learn at your own pace. The Russian: federal subjects quiz can be customized by anyone with a free account on Lizard Point Quizzes.

Or you could try one of these quizzes to start off:

Good luck!

 

 

 

 

 

A new type of student account: Student-owned accounts

Aug 262016

If you're a teacher of students that are 13 years of age and older, and your students sign up for accounts themselves, you might find our new account type of interest: Student-owned accounts that are connected to a teacher account.

A quick review of Teacher accounts and their student accounts

Until now, if a teacher wants to monitor their students' activity, the teacher must create generated accounts and hand them out to the students. And give everyone the same password. And keep track of whose account is whose. This is an ideal solution for maintaining the privacy and safety of children under 13 on the internet.  But it may not be ideal for teachers of a large number of students in higher grades.

Introducing... Student-owned accounts connected to your teacher account

With student-owned accounts, students can sign up for their own accounts, and maintain their own passwords. Sounds like just a regular account that has always been available? Not quite - now anyone with a regular (non-teacher) account will see a new option in their My Account menu: Join or Leave Class.

Join or Leave class on the My Account menu

If you, the teacher, have one or more classes set up in your account, you can instruct your students to use the Join a Class option to connect their account to yours. When they do that, they will be prompted to fill in the alias/nickname and give you permission to access their results.   The alias/nickname will be what you see on your class results listing (thus saving you some work figuring out who's who).

screenshot of filling out the Join Class screen

This option is available for both Teacher Basic and Teacher Plus accounts , but please note that you need a Teacher Plus account to view your student scores (Teacher Basic will just show you that the student completed the quiz - not the score).

 We have more information for you here about the two types of student accounts, and details about the process of Joining a class.


Need your class to take a quiz in strict test mode?

Jul 312016

We've just introduced a new feature that has been requested by some of our teachers: you can now force a quiz to go into strict test mode (with the other modes disabled).  

If you've ever given your students a test, and and asked them to use strict test mode, you might have been frustrated by the one or two students who missed following your instructions. Problem solved! You can now set up a customized quiz that goes directly into strict test mode, with no mode change options on the screen at all. Note: this feature is only available to Premium users (Teacher Plus accounts, and Individual Supporter accounts)

Here is what you'll end up with: notice in the screenshot below that the quiz is in strict test mode - 1 point per question ie only one guess, no map or show me buttons, and no buttons to change the quiz to practice mode or test mode.

screenshot of a quiz forced to strict test modescreenshot of a quiz forced to strict test mode

 

How to set up a quiz like this yourself

First, you must be signed in (to either a Teacher Plus account, or an Individual Supporter account), and select a quiz from the customize a quiz page.

On the customize screen you will see a new set of options, Quiz Mode Options, just below the options for coloring the map. Here's a screenshot of a customize screen, with a red circle around the new options:

screenshot of where to find the mode optionsScreenshot of where to find the mode options

The default option is that the Practice, test and strict test options are all available - this is the the standard quiz behavior that you're all familiar with. Select the second option, Force strict test mode, as shown in this little screen shot:

force strict test option
Force strict test radio button



After entering your title, description, selecting your locations, and your mode option, hit the save button, and you are done! You've got yourself a quiz that behaves ONLY in strict mode.  This is a great option to set up a quiz to use just for testing.  You can continue to use standard quizzes, or customize quizzes without this option, for your students to be able to practice and prepare for their tests.

Try this Demo quiz in Strict Test Mode

I've set up a Demo Quiz of 16 countries in Europe so you can try out what it's like when you use this feature.

Save your favorite quizzes

Jul 192016

Here's a quick run-through of the new feature: Favorite A Quiz.

If you're a teacher, and you want to put quizzes for your students on your (soon to be released) blackboard, this feature is going to help you get your quizzes there.

If you're a learner, favoriting a quiz is a way to keep all your favorite quizzes bookmarked in one spot. You might want to do this if you've got several quizzes you're studying for, or are frequently practicing. You can remove a quiz from your favorites just as easily.

Here's how it works...

Every quiz in the geography section has (or will soon have) a star just above the Question and Answer box. You just click on the star to mark the quiz as a favorite. It will turn from an outline to a solid star to show that it has been saved as a favorite. 

Screenshot of how to save a quiz as a favorite Screenshot of how to save a quiz as a favorite



 Screenshot of a quiz that has been saved as a favorite Screenshot of a quiz that has been saved as a favorite

If you want to remove the quiz from your favorites, just click the solid star, and it will revert back to the original outline (unfavorited) star.

When you want to see your favorites, go to your My Account menu (yes, you have to be signed in for your favorites to be saved and viewed) and select My Favorite Quizzes.

Screenshot of navigation to My Favorites screen

Screenshot of navigation to My Favorites screen


Below is a screenshot of what the My Favorite Quizzes screen looks like. As you can see, you can also remove quizzes from your favorites here.

Screenshot of My Favorites screen Screenshot of My Favorites screen

Favoriting a quiz is available to Individual Supporters, those with a Teacher Plus account, and students of a Teacher Plus.

Stay tuned for a blog post on how this fits in with the new blackboard feature.

New map-flag quizzes

Jan 162016

We've just launched two new quizzes to test your country flag knowledge. We'll show you a flag, you have to find the country on the map. The Africa and Europe versions have been around a long time: now we've got an Americas flag quiz as well as an Asia flag quiz

As promised, our supporters get early access to new quizzes and features. For everyone else, the new quizzes will open up to you on February 1, 2016.

screenthot of the Americas flag quiz

 

 

Custom quizzes: option to colour normally or colour grey

Nov 232015

When we implemented custom quizzes a few months back, all custom quizzes had the same behavior: if a country, France for example, isn't included in the customized version of the Europe quiz, it is coloured differently (a very light white-grey) to make it plainly obvious that it is not in the quiz. And if you click on it, the response is "France is not included in this quiz. No points lost. Try again", and you still have the same number of tries left - that is, it does NOT count as a guess.

This set-up works out quite well when you're trying to learn a smaller chunk of what might otherwise be an overwhelming quiz: it lets you focus on just what you need to learn.

But when it comes to test time, your teacher probably isn't going to cross out the countries you don't need to know. So we're now offering a choice of 2 options when you set up your custom quizzes:

  • colour the excluded areas normally (and scoring penalty for any wrong answer)
  • colour the excluded areas grey (and guesses to excluded areas do not count as a guess)

screenshot of the selection of the two map colouring options

I've set up 2 sample quizzes so you can see the difference. Each quiz has the exact same set of 5 questions: United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Italy and Portugal. One quiz has the all the excluded areas coloured normally, and the other quiz has excluded areas coloured grey. Go ahead and try them out and see the difference... click on France to see the difference. (If you're not sure where France is, use the labels on button and look for France). 

When you create a custom quiz, the way you select which option you want is just above the list of places you can choose, as shown in this screenshot:

screenshot showing the options just above the list of places

 

When you are selecting your countries to include in your custom quiz, you will not see the difference on the map - you won't see the effect of it until you save the quiz.

If you don't like the option you chose, you can always, at any time, edit your quiz and switch options.

Need a reminder of what the options mean? Hold your mouse over the question mark icons (or tap on your touch screen) to see the explanation: 

screenshot showing the explanations of the options using the help icons

 

 

Staying Alive - New stay signed in feature

Nov 252015

 

You didn't think it was a post on disco, did you?

Hate remembering passwords?  Or do you ever get frustrated after you've worked hard to score well on a quiz - only to find that you weren't signed in and your score wasn't recorded? This actually happens quite a bit. It could be that you took a break and got timed out (sessions time out after 90 minutes of inactivity), or it might simply be that you forgot to sign in at all. We've created a 'stay signed in' solution to this problem.

screen shot of sign in form with Keep me signed in option

All you need to do is check the box on the sign in page that says, 'Keep me signed in'. This will ensure you never have to sign in again from that device. It works by creating a small cookie in your browser that links your computer/laptop/tablet/phone with your account. After you sign-in with this selected, you will always be connected on that device. Anytime you visit Lizard Point, for up to a year later, you will be automatically connected to your account. However, there are a few important points to remember:

  • Don't use this on a shared device. Anyone else accessing that device can connect to Lizard Point - as you - and perhaps mess up your account. It's even possible for someone to copy your cookie and use it later on a different device to impersonate you.
  • You can't stay signed in to your account from two different devices. If you have selected 'keep me signed in' from one device, and then select it from a second device, your first device will no longer be able to automatically sign in. (But you can have one device automatically sign in and have another sign in the normal way).
  • If you ever want to disable the 'stay signed in' feature - just click Sign out. This will invalidate the cookie on your device.  You will have to sign in with your password to reset it if you wish.

screenshot of sign out link above the navigation bar

  • And, of course, if you clean out your cookies for whatever reason, or switch to a different browser - you will have to re-sign in and check the box again.

We're hoping this feature is useful for you, and encourages you to do even more quizzes.

 

World Quiz: New and improved!

Oct 222015

We announced a quiz of the whole world the other day (see our Oct 19 blog post), and feedback told us, there were just too many navigation clicks required to answer the questions. So we put together a new quiz - based on work we had already done for that one as well as the much older one with the slider bar - and we came up with what we hope is finally a solid solution.

In our latest quiz, you can answer many of the questions without leaving the world map. And if you can't answer on the world map, you can click a magnifier to get to an enlarged continent or region map.

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As with the previous version, once in a continent map, you can use one of 3 ways to return to the world map, and there are no points lost for moving around.

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Please give the quiz a try and leave us some feedback here!