Getting started: Activity Builder

With our Activity Builder, you can create your own unique and engaging digital activities.

Updated over a week ago

We’ve assembled a collection of unique and engaging digital activities on And with our Activity Builder, you can even create your own! Get started with the following video then dive deeper with the resources provided.

Note: Some of the navigational elements in this video may not match the information in this article. Stay tuned for an updated video.


Copy and paste activity screens

Get started with activity building by copying and pasting screens into your own Desmos Classroom activities! We recommend checking out these Starter Screens.

Note: Some of the navigational elements in this video may not match the information in this article. Stay tuned for an updated video.

Collaborate with colleagues

You can build and edit activities in collaboration with your colleagues! Learn More.

Note: Only one person can edit an activity at a time.

One goal per screen

Keep students focused on one goal per screen by selecting a small number of complementary components. For example, use Sketch + Note + Text Input to ask students to share their thoughts through words and drawings.

Ready to build your masterpiece? Here are some of the Activity Builder components.


Graph components are the core element of most Desmos Classroom activities. Use them alone or combine them with other components like Note and Input.


The Table component allows students to explore connections between multiple representations—graph to table, table to equation, text to table, and more!


Sketch components offer an easy way to gather informal student thinking. With three background options (blank, graph, and custom image) the possibilities are endless.


With the Media component, adding images and video to your activity is a piece of cake. Click Choose a file to upload, or simply use our Drag-and-Drop feature.

Please remember to add image descriptions and video captions to media you upload.


Whether you’re calling attention to some feature of a graph or asking students to reflect on something they’ve just done, Note components can play a key role in an activity. Add text, math, or a combination of the two.


Use the Free Response component to collect student responses as text, image, or recorded audio. Use the Math Response component to collect student responses in numbers, expressions, and equations. Use both in combination with a graph, image, and/or note to drive class discussion.

Choice, Checkboxes, and Ordered lists

We’ve been delighted by the ways teachers have used Activity Builder to spark, capture, and discuss student thinking. To further support those efforts, we now offer Multiple Choice, Checkboxes and Ordered Lists.

Graphing Calculator

The Graphing Calc component gives students full access to the power of the Desmos Graphing Calculator. Use it to set up some initial equations for students to explore or leave it blank for students to create anything they like.


Marbleslides is a delightful way for students to explore connections between the graphs and equations of lines, parabolas, and more. Now you can add marbleslides challenges to your own activities!

You can activate marbleslides on the Desmos Labs page.

Card Sort

At Desmos Classroom, we love card sort activities and all the rich discussions we’ve seen them generate in classrooms over the years. So we’ve added a Card Sort tool to our Activity Builder that makes it even easier for teachers to create, deliver, and—most important of all—facilitate discussions around card sort activities.


You’re going to love how easy it is for students to explore congruency or generate geometric art using constructions and transformations in our Geometry tool.

You can activate Geometry on the Desmos Labs page.


With Polygraph, Desmos Classroom provides tools for developing informal language into formal vocabulary. Create your custom Polygraph by designing 16 unique cards geared toward building students' mathematical vocabulary.

Make your custom Polygraph by entering an equation in the expression list or adding an image.

You must have 16 unique cards, otherwise the Polygraph screen will not be shown to students.

Between rounds, students answer questions that focus their attention on vocabulary and strategy.

You can choose to incorporate premade reflection questions and/or you can create custom reflection questions for students.

You will be able to see all the rounds your students have played from the teacher dashboard. Click on the game to see the details of the round.


Polypad is now available inside Activity Builder! Use virtual manipulatives in your activities to explore brilliant mathematical ideas with students. Start with a blank canvas for students to experiment with or lay some tiles down to guide their experience.

Challenge Creator

Add a Challenge Creator to your activities to give students the social and creative learning experience of making, solving, and sharing math problems with their peers. You can design the Challenge Creator using screens and Computation Layer.

Additional options

Click on the title of the activity while editing to find:

Radians/degrees toggle: Use this to change the default angle measurement for all calculations in an activity, including math inputs, tables, graphs, and Computation Layer.

Note that graph settings will not change if the activity settings do. If your activity is in degrees, but has a graph in radians, you’ll receive a warning.

Add a calculator: Turn this on to add a Desmos Calculator on all screens for students to use while working in the activity. Choose between the four-function, scientific, or graphing calculators.

Ready to make your components work together to create a more interactive learning experience for your students? Check out our Introduction to Computation Layer article.

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