Empowering Student Voice through Self Differentiation in High School

I began using Buncee when I saw the awesome graphics that people were posting on social media. Because Buncee is so easy to use and create dynamic, fun images, I quickly began creating dozens of graphics for Twitter chats and for sharing meaningful quotes.

The response on Twitter was immediate and positive! Now, all of my Twitter chat introductions are made with Buncee…I even made Buncee business cards to share at conferences and edcamps!

Buncee is sometimes thought of as a tool for young students, but I found so much value in it that I decided to use it with my high school students. Here is an example of how I use it and the reasons why I think more teachers should use Buncee with older students:

I frequently use choice boards to increase students’ ownership, investment, and depth of learning.  Buncee is one of the options in my choice board for posters and presentations. What I found was that students were applying their knowledge in new, abstract ways when they use Buncee.

Providing Buncee as a choice empowers students to self-differentiate. While Buncee offers abundant choices for animations, stickers, and emojis, students must apply their knowledge to form analogies with the resources readily available rather than relying on the Internet for instant and exact matches to the content. Students make associations that are connected to their personal interests and history rather than using textbook images that directly related to a concept.

Concepts that can be difficult to express in words come to life with stickers and animations. Ideas can be communicated in intriguing ways with Buncee’s templates and stickers. In high school science, there is a renewed focus from understanding human impacts on the environment to methods to resolve these impacts. The multidimensional thinking demonstrated in this graphic shows the relationship of several scientific ideas. The menu choices available make it possible to think beyond the surface ideas to dig deeper and in a way that is personally meaningful. The platform is very easy to use and the results are visually stimulating. This is the Goldilocks Zone of difficulty for my high schoolers; it is not too difficult for them to complete the task while it provides just enough challenge to be rewarding.


Bonnie is a high school life science teacher in Massachusetts. She is passionate about engaging students in authentic activities, incorporating restorative practices, and leveraging technology to empower students to make an impact on their community. She enjoys connecting with educators through social media, professional organizations, conferences, Twitter chats, and edcamps. Bonnie serves as an Elementary and Secondary Education Science and Technology Ambassador, a member of the National Association of Biology Teachers (NABT), Teacher Institute for Evolutionary Science (TIES), and National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) and has presented at multiple conferences. You can follow Bonnie on Twitter @biologygoddess, on Voxer @bonnienieves, and via her WordPress blog.

Be first to comment