Cocktail Party Revision

This certainly isn’t something new (in fact I stole this idea long ago) but wanted to share a moment from my Y11 History class the other day.  In the build-up to exams, with so many revision classes on the trot, I think it’s hard to keep pupils motivated, and interested for that matter, in re-learning what they’ve previously been taught.  So instead of more exam-style questions I decided to throw a party.

Because the course content of GCSE History spans 24 years (and there were approximately 24 pupils in my class) I told each of them that they would be travelling to Britain (the focus of our course) for a 1 year vacation.  Having then secretly passed out to each pupil which year they had “vacationed” in, pupils needed to create a script for things they would have seen on their travels, headlines in the newspaper, big government changes/decisions etc.  Once they had spent approximately 30 minutes preparing their ideas, each pupil then needed to mingle with one another at my party and try to decipher when everyone else was vacationing.

It worked an absolute treat and pupils had a great time trying to be trixy with each other, to not let the more obvious dates become apparent.  At the end of the gala we created a class timeline of all the major events and contextual knowledge they’d need to write their exam.  Everyone was engaged and progress checking for knowledge gaps was easy as pupils knew which students they didn’t guess correctly and could then focus on learning what had happened during those dates.

Obviously this worked well with the content I’m currently covering, but maybe could also work well for you?  So in the search for fun revision ideas, maybe you can pause the practice and throw a party instead.

Happy teaching …

Posted by at May 3, 2013
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