I have been guilty of treating my sixth form to a diet of lectures followed by open book paper test questions for a fortnight (to make sure that we finish the syllabus before the holiday and to free-up time for coaching in exam questions and technique afterwards!)
It has allowed me time to emphasise the essentials, add context and also allowed me more time to keep up with marking their work but it has limited my engagement with the class and if I’m honest: their engagement with their learning. We were working hard but the work was supervisory not awfully formative nor particularly memorable. How surprised were they when having finished another hour long speed delivery through evolution, I asked them to “take a break and return for a quiz” .” A test you mean Miss” , they groaned. How delighted they were when they returned to complete a Kahoot!
(Students search Google for Kahoot.it, then enter the game code to play. The timed questions and answers are displayed on the whiteboard and they answer by keying in the correct colour choice icon that appears on their own screen)
Yes it was a sequence of test questions but they had instant feedback, we could move at a good pace, we could explore misconceptions where mistakes were being made ( an analysis appears after each question stating the highest 6 scorers and presenting a bar chart of class results)and I could save these as an excel file and examine them later.It was fun, lots of fun! In fact it was so much fun, that the class pleaded for more and we used a public Quiz that was shared on Biochemistry before they left. (I’d usually prefer to check all quizes through first of course!)
Here I am at home two days later, and I can see who needs help with discontinuous variation so I’ll speak with them individually before we move on, on Tuesday.
Far from ‘fun’ being a luxury of learning at this point in the course;learning together was essentially fun!
Sharon Davidson @sharondavidson1