We had a big test in Spanish II yesterday and it was one of those things that you either got an A or an F on. I wanted to go over it with the students but I knew that doing it in the large group would be a bore to most of them. Furthermore, going over the test with the whole class invariably results in a lot of little questions that are best addressed one-on-one . . . so what to do?
It occurred to me this morning during 1st period planning actually. I threw my lesson plan out the window and scurried around to put a new plan together at the last minute - learning stations! This way I could work in small groups on test corrections while the other students were busy at various stations I put up around my room.
Station 1 - Test Corrections and Optional Extra Credit
Station 2 - Vocabulary Picture Drawing
Station 3 - Vocabulary Memory Matching Game
Station 4 - Listening Practice
Station 5 - Vocabulary Pantomime
As you can probably guess, we just learned some new vocabulary and it was time to start playing around with it. But they weren't quite ready enough for me to turn them loose on some communicative practice without some scaffolding either, so the games, sketches, and pantomiming were a good choice. And since listening is a receptive (as opposed to a productive) skill, it is also a good choice when first practicing with new vocabulary too.
So after we did a warmup activity and reviewed the vocabulary on Power Point, I introduced the stations and told the students to go stand at the station where they wanted to begin. I kept the group maximum to four people since I am blessed with relatively small class sizes this year. Then I started a timer on my iPad and I dove in to work with the group at the Test Corrections Station.
For those folks who had As on their tests and didn't need much help, I had an extra credit option and I also suggested that they might like to help a fellow student. Some preferred working with others and some wanted to do extra credit, but all were amenable regardless.
All around the room students were engaged and learning - using their creative right brains to draw and act, and using their analytical left brains to play matching and to analyze the listening passages. Honestly, what could be better? I'm so glad I ditched the boring Let's-All-Review-The-Test-Together-Then-Make-Corrections plan!