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Does anyone have any new and imaginative ways to go through an exam paper...

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by cwej82, Apr 26, 2011.

  1. ...with a class, after they've done it. Rather than just going through the questions from beginning to end. Just wondering!
  2. I've never been able to stand a lesson, "going through the paper" either as a child or teacher. As I mark the papers I keep a list of the topics or techniques that are losing the class the marks. I then base future activities on these. So, in the last test none of the kids got full marks on "draw a frequency polygon". I cut this question out and used it as a basis for practising not only frequency polygons but estimating averages from grouped frequency tables, completing cumulative frequency tables, drawing cumulative frequency graphs, drawing box plots. The kids had revision guides and textbooks as well as their own notes and had to complete the A3 worksheet in groups. As a review, we looked at how you don't get these mixed up in the exam (key words in the question, labels on the axis etc).

    I once read about writing feedback to each student, but giving them all back to the table mixed up so the students have to match the feedback to the student before going on to follow the advice. I've not found this to work very well with maths.

    A third idea ('cos my post will lose all of its formatting!) is to complete a blank exam paper with all of their mistakes and get the kids to find and correct them.
  3. pencho

    pencho New commenter

    Agree with brookes that it's often difficult to "go through an exam paper" with particular groups and I generally don't know how much they get out of it going through it question by question. They tend to switch off after they know their mark and I tend to find I have to keep stopping and waiting for some to listen.
    To be honest if you want to go through a test this way, I would simply the mark the test as a class. This will probably have more an affect.
    A couple things that I have found useful in the past:-
    1) Find me 5
    Particular useful with borderline students. The idea is for students to find me 5 (or more) silly mistakes that they shoudl not have made.
    2) What's wrong with this?
    Give out some queastions from the test with wrong answers/misconceptions and ask students to mark them and find the mistakes. A good one is the one where they miss the units. Students always say "But they got the answer right - why have they lost a mark"
    Hope this helps

  4. Depends on your audience...someyou dont need to motivate as they just want the answers, some need it dressing up.
    I like it straight, others you might run a comp with and have them have 5 'cubes' each (like the clicky blocks you have in maths)
    If they get one wrong the hand you a cube back....If they lose all 5 they get another one to take home to do.
    You may start with 10, 12 or however many cubes depending on how good they are in relation to the paper they sit. The person with the most cubes wins a small prie and you can do one a week.
    Alternatively you teach a lesson and leave the answers up on the whiteboard and alow them to study it in their own time and look after the needs of pupils who have specific problems with the paper
  5. Thanks so much for all your feedback - I'm a GTP so any of this stuff is brilliant to hear. My experience has been that 'going through the paper' is quite ineffective with my classes so far too, which is why I thought about coming on here to ask about it, because most teachers in my department seem to 'go through papers'.

    I may try one or two ideas out from what you've all said and if I do, I'll definitely report back! Thanks again.
  6. Again it depends on a couple of things like how motivated the kids are, how hard they found the paper and the ability range
    If you go through the first 3 or 4 questions on a foundation paper as a class with ids targetting C grades then you lose the class, yet if you go through the harder stuff half the class dial out of the lesson as they didnt do it.
    IMO put them either on the VLE or whiteboard, teach another lesson and mae it the kids resposnibility to mark it. If they cant do that 4-5 weeks before an exam then you have to think "is it worth me flogging myself"
    I will rarely waste time going through a paper as a clas....I will do a paper as a class but not mar them or ask pupils when they are doing the paper at home to write 1-2 questions they didnt like. The most popular 'least popularquestion' we will do as a class and then loo for more examples if required
  7. bigkid

    bigkid New commenter

    I give them their papers back with the mark scheme and get them to produce a set of model answers. they have to work in groups of 3-4 an only ask me how to do something if nobody intheir group can figure it out from the mark scheme.
    they then have a set of model answers they can use to revise for future exams
  8. I get them to go through the paper and identify marks lost through either 'silly careless errors that I really can't see why I made' , 'marks which i can easily get now i've seen the correct answer' and 'marks which I lost 'cos i really don't know this topic'. I give them a template to fill in - for some papers which have been around for a while this also lists the questions and topic area they come from. I find that they are encouraged to see how much they really can do if they focus, correct once they've had a bit more practice and identify their real problem topics. I make mark schemes available but strongly encourage them to pair/group up to share answers and spot their errors. I do this with all abilities and find it works equally well across them all
  9. ...comments from a science thread visitor. Lovely ideas here. Hope you don't mind if I use them.

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