The Hot Potatoes is a software that enables you to create interactive exercises. These exercises include multiple-choice, short-answer, jumbled- sentence, crossword, matching/ ordering and gap-fill exercises. Hot Potatoes is free of charge and can be downloaded from its main page on the Internet. So how to use it? Hmmm….....?
It can facilitate the teachers in constructing the exercises with minimal training of using this application. Teachers do not have to be stressed to produce one piece of exercise to the students. The exercises that have been produced by HOT POTATOES are interactive as the teachers can includes sounds and pictures to attract students interest in completing the tasks. The interactivity of the exercises will motivate the learners to act independently and help them in keeping their motivation level high.
Learners also will have more control (pace, choices, etc) in doing the tasks rather than a paper exercise where any one word can be the stumbling block to understanding This is because clues will be given to overcome the difficulty. There is an instant feedback in completing the task will help the learners in their learning.
It has limited interaction between the learners, teachers and the computer itself. It is all too often a "click-and-go" approach, which can mean that the student is not given sufficient scaffolding or support in the learning process. It creates the tendency of the learners to operate a binary correction strategy whereby the learners use the assumption If X is wrong, then Y must be the answer. HOT POTATOES could only be used as a self-learning or a self assessment tool, but does not have merit as a testing tool.
The usage of authoring software helps teachers in developing various exercises according to the level of students and teacher’s understanding of their students Easy and fast, it can also be a hassle for teachers who are not competent with computer Depending on teacher’s preference, authoring software can be useful for teachers in the long run