January 10, 2007
Reviewing for tests in any subject can be boring especially if using worksheets. I came up with something that my students love! I call it Snake. I write fifty problems on numbered index cards. No answers are provided, but I have a master answer sheet. Students number an answer sheet from 1 to 50 where they record their answers and show the work on another piece of clean paper. I arrange the students' desks in a snake pattern and then give each student an index card. They work the problem from the card, being careful to number their work and show all the steps needed for solving the problem. Their answers are recorded on their answer sheets, and they pass the card on to their left as they finish. I allow them to have two cards on their desk at a time, but if more cards are passed than they have time to do, they just pass the extra cards on to the next student. I pick up the cards from the tail of the snake and start them back through again so that students who didn't get them the first time will work them the second. I also take note of anyone who is sitting without a card to work on and feed them one. When most of the problems are worked, we stop and I call out answers so they can check their work. I have never seen students work so hard. One word of advice is to stress to them that they are shooting for accuracy and not for speed! I think that the pressure of having cards passed to them makes some of them try to go too fast.