It’s that time of year. The time of year that is met with dread by students and teachers alike. The time of year that, in the winter, we need two weeks to recover from, and in the spring, at least eight.
Whatever the cause of this anxiety, I know exams are right around the corner. I know I have to get to a certain point in the curriculum by then. I know students need to review. And I know we don’t have the amount of time to review that we need.
So my mission this week is to talk about quick and easy review strategies that will take no more than 15 minutes either at the beginning or the end of class, so that we can review and continue to learn new material right until the bitter end.
1. 5-5-5 Study Guide
Never heard of it before? Well, okay–I made it up, but it works with my students, so I’m thinking it might work with yours, too.
You know those study guides that we would have killed for when we were in school? The ones our teachers never made? The ones our students never answer?
Go ahead and devote 15 minutes at the end of class to forcing students to examine this gift horse full on. It goes like this:
-Instruct students that they have five minutes to work on their study guide all alone and quietly. They should go through it and answer all of the questions they can off the top of their heads. Then they should look up questions they don’t know the answers to using their notes. Set your timer for five minutes.
-When the timer goes off, pair students with the person next to them. Explain to them that they will have five minutes to discuss answers and help each other out. Set your timer for five minutes.
-When the timer goes off, tell students that they have five minutes to ask you questions. The time limit ensures that the majority of them pay attention to questions asked and answered and that you aren’t answering study guide questions repeatedly and indefinitely. Set your timer for five minutes.
2. Study Guide Scrammble
Answer the study guide yourself, and then delete the questions, and mix up the answers. Place students into groups of three or four. Instruct them to place the number of the question on their study guide next to the answer it best goes with.
I make this quick by turning it into a challenge. The first group that gets all of the answers correct, wins. I give them XP (points for my gamified classroom), but candy and extra credit are also great incentives.
To make checking their answers go as quickly as possible, be sure to make a key with the study guide question numbers next to the answers.
3. Face the Class
This is another one I made up, but with the help of tried and true games like TABOO and the once popular app, HEADS UP.
For a 15 minute Review:
-Type one vocabulary, concept, person, etc. word onto a single PowerPoint slide. Fill up as many slides with one word as you plan to review.
-The team with the most points at the end of the game wins (XP, a piece of candy, extra credit…).
If I ever have a few minutes left at the end of class, I call one student up to “Face the Class.” The entire class gives clues without saying the word. If the student guesses the correct answer before the timer goes off, he/she gets a piece of candy and selects the next student to “Face the Class.”
I used this method once before when I was being observed and had 5 minutes left with nothing to do, and the administrator was quite impressed!
I made a PowerPoint game template of this with a built in timer and a scoreboard that you can type on in present mode. You can preview it HERE.
|Get it HERE!|
What are your quick, go-to reviews that take 15 minutes or less? Leave a comment and let me know.
And check back in next week when I talk about the three best super quick reviews using technology–perfect for the 1:1 classroom!