Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Testing it out

After watching Coach B's state test prep video, I wanted to try out some of the labeling techniques in my classroom.  So began Doofus, Trickster, and Smarty.  These are labels for multiple-choice answers on

Doofus: answers that are obviously wrong.
Trickster: answers that are close or "tricky" in another way
Smarty: a right answer that can be proven with work (math) or underlined in a reading passage

My kids LOVE doing this.  Since when do kids love test prep? We made up gestures and faces for each one (their "doofus" faces are hilarious) and they're quickly able to pick out Doofus and Tricksters.

The best part is adding the "because" clapper.  "I think this is a Doofus because_______".  Some serious critical thinking is happening!  The kids really enjoy picking out the Tricksters.  We often talk about the mean old test makers who are out to trick unsuspecting third graders.

So far I've had success with this will all levels of students.

  Be sure to watch Coach B's video for more ideas!
After we finished, one student said, "Ms. Mahan, this is easy!" 
(This from a student who previously sighed heavily and rolled his eyes whenever we got out books!)

Teacher Heaven.

Do you use Doofus, Trickster, and Smarty in your classroom?
What are your favorite test prep techniques?

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