All is quiet here on the blog front as of late. It's because we are in exam season and I have been focused on preparing my students, fine tuning my exams, and getting everything graded and into the gradebook for report cards next week.
But I had a ray of insight last year that I wanted to share with my readers here. Because as language teachers, more often than not, we struggle with the same problems. I always had the same issue every year - I wanted to save paper and reuse my exams so I told my students not to write in the test booklets. But this stressed them out because they wanted to be able to mark out answer choices in the matching sections so they could use the process of elimination. It made sense but I still didn't want them to mark up those 14-something page test books. What I used to do was to give them scratch paper and instruct them to write the answers there and mark them out as they went. Not an ideal solution but it was the best I had.
And then it occurred to me! Why not put the answer choices on the answer sheet and allow them to cross them out there?! It seems so simple when you think about it, and I do wonder why it didn't occur to me before. Putting the answer choices on the answer sheet (in a simple table) takes up a very small amount of space and completely solves the problem. They no longer write on my tests and this is a much better plan for everyone - especially my special needs students who struggle with transcription.
I thought I'd pass that along and I hope it works for you. May your students do brilliantly on their exams this test season and show you how much they have learned!