Course-based activities offer one way of ensuring the active participation of students. Using activities enables students to move more readily from receiving knowledge to generating knowledge.
All learners benefit from doing, even during an assessment. Using ProProfs Quiz Maker in one of the following activities lets students be in charge of their own learning.
(1) Use mystery
Some teachers refer to this type of activity as open-book or open-note. These titles may accurate descriptions but they aren’t very appealing. Students love a good mystery. Ask students to use their detective skills to discover answers.
With ProProfs QuizMaker teachers can create questions that contain related material. Attach a screenshot, photograph or diagram, or even a video, then ask students to evaluate the attached material in order to find the answer.
By providing material that reflects the information contained in the corresponding lesson, you are reinforcing prior instruction by forcing students to explore, analyze, and evaluate information.
The mystery method can be used effectively with matching, true/false, fill in the blank, and multiple choice, as well as essay type questions.
(2) Make a treasure hunt
In this activity you ask students to read a passage in search of a particular concept, idea, or fact. Create up to five questions that focus on one passage. Be sure not to copy a text directly from any course materials, but thoughtfully reword a passage for better reinforcement. Ask students to examine the passage and use deductive reasoning to determine the answer before writing their answer in the appropriate box.
Using ProProfs Quiz Maker, use the “Fill in the Blank” question type, then create your list of possible answers. If capitalization is not important to the answer you should create possible answers with and without initial capitals (like This and this) to avoid false negatives.
(3) Map it!
Most students enjoy looking at maps. This activity is similar to the Mystery method, but slightly different in application. This activity can be used in almost any subject area, including mathematics. This method can be used with multiple choice and checkbox, using ProProfs Quiz Maker.
Select a map or diagram. It can be a map relating to your topic, or it can be an image or diagram that contains information needed to complete a task relating to your topic. For a mathematics activity your map may need to include lines of latitude and longitude as well as degree marks.
You will need to pre-edit your map, and place on it small marks that number various locations on the diagram. For example, if you are testing student knowledge on the bones of the body, upload a diagram of the area of the body you wish to have students examine. Using your image editing software, add letters or numbers to the diagram, then save. Upload your diagram and write your questions. You can use the same diagram for a series of questions, asking students to demonstrate their knowledge of the names of each bone labeled. If you are conducting your test in class, be sure to randomize your question order, to prevent students from copying one another’s answers.
(4) Have students write a quiz
This is an extremely useful method and works well toward the end of a unit. Assigning students to work in teams of two works best. Also, be prepared that this activity can take several class periods. Don’t rush your students. Remember, the real goal here is to get them to learn the material; the secondary goal is the creation of a quality quiz.
As an additional activity, once the quiz creation assignments have been graded and you have given students a chance to edit and improve them, have a day where each of the quizzes created by students are used as the final chapter or unit assessment. Number or name each quiz by team, then assign each quiz to alternating students.
At the end of a chapter or unit, compile the best questions from all quizzes into your chapter test. Explain to students where you got the questions. This knowledge will appeal to student interest. Use question pooling to assure that each student gets a different list of questions on their test. This will discourage copying if seating is arranged closely.
(5) Team scores competition
This can work especially well in classes already naturally divided into sections such as a lab, but any class can be divided into four or more teams.
Assign each team a workstation. Assign a test or quiz for each team to complete. It works best to use a test or quiz with a minimum of twenty questions. Encourage students to collaborate on the answers in order to submit one quiz per team. As an alternate method, assign students to teams and have students take quizzes independently.
Post a score board where each team’s collective points are posted once the quiz is complete. If you use this activity multiple times, teams can compete weekly to see which team is on top.
As an added culminating event, plan a chapter test to be conducted the same way. Encourage team members to help each other prepare for the test in study groups in or outside of class. There is no need to publicly list each student’s score as this may actually work against team unity.
This activity can overlap with any of the above and almost any kind of question. The reporting functions in ProProfs QuizMaker will make it simple for you to update the scores quickly on your chart.
Before electronic portfolios, many teachers had students compile their portfolios in boxes or binders, containing artifacts of their learning process throughout the school term. Digital portfolios work much the same, except there is no physical box to contain student work.
Electronic portfolios let students compile all their work in one place. Various tools, activities, and assignments can be included. The key to a good digital portfolio is a table of contents. Portfolios work best when assigning different topics of study found within a course. For example, when studying a unit on Exploration, each student or team of students is assigned one significant historical figure or event. Students do the research and compile a list of facts, creating a portfolio of their discoveries. In this way students become instructors, which gives them ownership over the learning process.
In a digital portfolio, when students complete a section, chapter, or topic, have them use ProProfs Quiz Maker to create assessments for fellow students to use. You will need to review the quizzes for fairness and accuracy if you use them in your grading. At the end of a unit portfolios are exchanged and the associated quiz completed as a classroom activity.
Using activities such as the ones above can motivate students. Motivated learners are more likely to perform at their best. Keeping quizzes interesting allows you to make the most of your allotted instruction time while simultaneously achieving greater accuracy in assessment results. Use these ideas to generate new ones with your own creativity.
Creative activities are helpful to you as a teacher both for planning and for finding alternative ways to assess student learning. If you haven’t yet tried on online quiz tool consider ProProfs Quiz Maker, it can save you time and help you give better quizzes.