Although staff are all knee-deep in exam marking, invigilation, report writing and teaching we still managed to meet to discuss our thoughts and ideas on how we get the students to think for themselves.
First up, @shampoozil talked us through how important it is to share the assessment criteria with the pupils. The process provides the pupils with clear steps to get from basic level to exceptional. It may sound simple but it is effective and the steps, if clearly defined, provide a marking structure for the teacher too.
The whole process helps the pupils to recognise different levels of work and enables them to produce work that goes beyond the relational and access those higher order thinking skills that will help them get the top marks. The 2 stars and a wish image clearly highlights how thinking in this way can link into Solo taxonomy.
On the theme of SOLO taxonomy this structure for guiding pupils in writing literature essays was also suggested. The idea is that pupils move up from the bottom and go beyond simply listing and identifying characters and consider how they can express more than an analysis of minor characters. The top level considers how students might be encouraged to think beyond the analysis.
Next up @DiEvans18 talked about how she uses twitter to share links with students and then get them to explain a resource with their peers. This really tests their ability to internalise information and recreate using their own words – not an easy task.
Finally, we were all bowled over by the website www.101qs.com. In essence a maths website set up by mathematicians where pictures and videos are shared. The point of the picture or the video – to get you to think “what’s the first question that comes into your mind?”. The video plays twice and it is then possible to submit your question (or the question suggested by your class) and see what questions other people have thought of. It really gets you thinking. Have a go yourself…
What’s the first question that comes into your mind?
Suggested question "how much bigger is this pool table than a normal one?"