Do you remember in elementary school when your teacher would pull a popsicle stick out of a jar at random with a student’s name on it? And that was the student who was chosen to read their story or feed the goldfish or go to recess first?

Well, I still used popsicle sticks in my high school classroom. After all, it’s still the most fair way to decide which student is chosen! But, of course, being the owner of a blog called TeachBytes, I had to amp up my strategy to the 21st century.

Here are 5 modern name generators:

  • Spinning Wheel Name Picker – This one is simple, easy-to-use, and really great for projecting. Students (especially younger ones) love watching the wheel spin and the suspense of who it will land on.
  • Random Name Picker – Very simple, not the most visually fun, but gets to the point fast.
  • ABCYa Name Picker – Another fun visual one, especially for younger students! It has sound effects too, so turn those speakers up when you use it.
  • Ninja Name Picker – Who doesn’t love ninjas? This one is also simple, has a fun ninja theme, and uses fading colors for a cool visual effect.
  • Fruit Machine Picker – This one is simple, but makes it look like a casino fruit machine! It also has a typewriter theme for a more simplistic visual.

2 thoughts on “5 Random Name Generators: The Modern Day Popsicle Sticks

  1. I have two different methods: one is a pack of cards with the students’ names on one side. A student is allowed to pick at random. Much hilarity ensues when they pick their own name!

    The second is part of a wonderful app called idoceo which I use on my ipad as a class markbook/dairy/folder which has a seating plan and a random selector. Again, students are able to select or I select.It also ignores any student who has been marked as absence in the attendance tab.

  2. I have two methods I use.
    The first is an app on my ipad called idoceo which is a diary/markbook/document storer and more. It has a tab which is a seating plan and this has a random generator. It also ignores any student marked as absent.
    The second is an ‘old school’ method – a pack of cards with the students names on labels on one side. I allow a student to choose at random. Much hilarity ensues when they pick their own name!

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