Tuesday, February 25, 2014

I got 'em now!!

It's super entertaining to hear students say "I spent so much time on that task that I think I would have preferred taking YOUR quiz".  That's when you know that deep learning really happened.  The sad part is that is so foreign to students.  They are used to memorizing as much information as they can the night before and then trying to put it all down on their paper before it falls out of their head, after which they think it is appropriate to purge everything they have just learned.  I asked my students if they thought it would be acceptable to tell their boss on day 2 of work that they had forgotten everything they learned on day 1 and expect to get an enthusiastic response from said boss.  Of course they just stare at me, but I know my point is made.  I have doubts that they plan on changing without the continued impetus from me.

Even better is that someone in the class brings back the reality that had they taken MY quiz, they probably would not have scored too well, and they blurt out the "bonus information" that in the "other teacher's class", the students claimed they did not have enough time to finish the teacher quiz AND they don't think they did very well on it.  Now the perspective has begun to change.

Needless to say, my students were very excited to have me take each of their quizzes that they created.  A couple of them were sharp enough to have calculated that I would make them take each other's quiz, which, of course, was my "evil plan" all along.  It was great to hear them apologize to their partner with "I'm sorry, I thought Mrs. Torres was taking my quiz", or "oh, you're doing number 6, yeah, that one is a bear."  But as they worked through their partner's quiz, even more learning was taking place.  They were able to find mistakes and correct them.  I love it when my "evil plan" works!!

Wait, there's still more!!  The best part is when I asked the students to grade themselves on what they had created, and then grade their partner's work.  So many questions:  "a letter grade or a percent?", "how do I justify giving myself an A?", "shouldn't there be a rubric for this?"  Now they are speaking my language!!  So we have to create one, and they ALWAYS have better ideas than I do alone.

Doing things differently leads to so many new discoveries for them AND me!!  So many good questions and so much more learning!!

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