Saturday, April 4, 2015

Liven Up the Review Process With GAMES!

This is the month of our well-deserved spring break!  It is because of this upcoming break that teachers will also be grappling with how to keep students on task as images of vacation dance in their heads:)

Break time might be a good time to check out a fun review site tool that will keep students fully engaged as they master the content of the lesson.  Once you feel comfortable with the site and can manage it like a pro, you will be ready to bring it the class in after spring break.  Since it will probably take the students a few days to settle in, it will be a great tool to motivate full class participation in a fun format.

What is this incredible tool?  JEOPARDY (but VERY easy to create)!  There are many formats that can be used in presenting this game.  I have selected 3 of my favorite approaches below:

  1. Create the game yourself so you are thoroughly familiar all of the questions and answers.  Such an in-depth knowledge of the “game board” does not allow for students to argue over what they feel is correct or not.  Split the class into small groups of 4 or 5 who will compete as teams.  If you want to allot prizes, make them creative (not expensive) onesJ
  2. Have students create their own game board in small groups.  For this, they would use Google Docs to create the questions and answers.  Students will check each other’s work BEFORE they go on the board.
  3. Split the class into two teams.  The goal here is that each team creates the game.  The teacher then has each group deliver their game to the class on different days.  Further, the class taking part as the audience will follow a checklist to see if the game covered all the points that were assigned.

Another game similar to JEOPARDY, but slightly easier to set up is FLIPQUIZ. Think of this as a 21st century version of JEOPARDY.  It is equipped with a built in timer.  Boards can be shared with fellow teachers or students.  For some students, this would be a highly effective study tool for them and they are having fun reviewing!  Click here for a quick explanation of some key features.

Care to use a non-quiz format for review?  Why not FAKEBOOK (like FACEBOOK but for students)?  Either alone or with partners, students could create detailed FACEBOOK pages on their assigned characters (or whatever subject you want).  Since all the students know FACEBOOK, you won’t have to spend too much time going over how to use it.

For non-tech scenarios, there is always academic bingo!  Teachers identify the key concepts or terms for students to place on their bingo cards and then the rest is chance.  Further, when a student wins, he or she must define each term (with support from peers of course) or use it correctly in a sentence.  Again, students are having fun while learning.  For teachers, they can quickly see what areas need a review and what ones don’t.

Hope you have a great restful spring break!


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