Thursday, April 24, 2008

I Got Observed Today, Part II

A Lesson the Day After a Test

Algebra kids had a concept quiz yesterday. I scored them last night, put them in the gradebooks, gave them back today. But if I want students to learn from the quiz, I figure they need a way to go back and review the quiz.

The method for today was to give them just the answers to the problems. They had the rest of class to work with a partner/group to discuss any problems missed. (I answered questions by turning them around, pointing them to their notes, the filing system of old notes, or a poster on the wall.) Half-way through the review time, I gave them each a post-it with a problem from the test. Yes, the problems were strategically chosen to be one they missed, even better if their partner missed it too. If students were working, I assigned a problem that I knew they were discussing. If they were slacking, that's when they got the "harder" problems.

In order to get your participation credit for the day, you needed to put your problem on the board by the end of the review time. You didn't have to explain it to the rest of the class (my students really shy away from talking). You weren't going to embarrass yourself by getting it wrong (you have the answer and you have people helping you).

It's a decent way to review. I like it better than me working all the problems on the board. It has the perk of getting students to the board (they tend to stay away from it to work, but will doodle and tag their name all over it otherwise). They were more likely to ask questions of a single peer than they are to ask questions to me in front of the class. They were also more likely to ask questions when they knew they needed to do this again and soon. I'm not knocking this method. I'll use it again.

But there must be other ways to review tests. What are they?

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