I believe that within lessons, revision should be a regular and integral part of many of our lesson activities. The benefits are:
- They are making valuable links between topics already studied and current work.
- They can experiment with different revision methods (we can introduce them to different techniques).
- We can help pupils to break down the content into the most important aspects.
- We help them to practise using their short-term memory which can then help them to develop their longer term memory.
Within the tutorial programme, we have all led sessions based around revision but I am still aware that a lot of pupils simply don’t know how to revise; they are good at making notes but then this is often the end of the process.
A few simple activities that we can incorporate into lessons to help pupils revise the content:
- Ask pupils to write their own exam questions; you can allow them to use notes, or you could use a prep session to revise a particular topic which these questions are then focused on.
- Ask pupils to write down as much as they can remember about a particular topic/key figure/concept/play etc. on a blank piece of paper. After a specified amount of time, they should speak to peers and add to their notes any points that they have missed out, using a different colour. You can specify how many extra facts they should add. They then have time to read, look back at classwork, discuss and re-write this detail again, before being given another blank paper, and asked to write down what they remember once again. This activity will introduce them to a number of different revision methods that can be discussed/analysed afterwards.
- Ask pupils to create a glossary of key words that relate to a past topic (give them a specific number to come up with) – collate these as a class and all pupils should come to a decision about the words that are the most important/relevant.
The next TeachMeet (Friday 1st December) will focus on different methods to easily incorporate revision into lessons.
Please do add any comments or questions to the T&L blog…and of course, any ideas you have to help students learn more effectively.