Last Minute Revision Ideas
Inspired by this TES article about last minute GCSE revision activities, we’ve put our heads together and collated our favourite strategies for last minute revision revisions.
- Keyword quizzes – “turn to the back of your books and write down the term I’m describing”.
- Quiz-quiz-trade – students write their own one- or two-mark exam questions on a post-it note with the answer on the back. They move around the room and find someone to ask their question to. They quiz each other, then swap questions and find someone new to quiz with their new question. Do it a few times and then ask the class what the hardest question was to go through as a group.
- There is a range of online platforms for quizzing that will engage tech-savvy students. They will also most likely Save you time, already having questions for topics and specifications made by other teachers before you. Try Quizlet, Kahoot and Tassomai.
- Articulate – pair up students and have them quiz each other with definitions and keywords.
- Pictionary – whole class or in pairs: try to draw a keyword or term.
- Doodles – a great way to learn detail heavy case studies (see some geography examples here)
- Revision clocks – a great way to keep students focused and cover an entire topic in one hour.
- Dance routines – Any set of steps, a process or a case study or explanation can be broken down into gestures or ‘dance moves’. Get the kids up and moving and come up with a movement to represent each step in the process. Combine them together and help the kids remember with actions as well as words. Honestly, it really helps!
- Revision pong – beer pong but with exam questions instead of alcohol.
- Top tips – be sure to repeat, repeat and repeat your top tips before the exam. These could be acronyms to help answer questions, important keywords or basic exam rules like “a mark a minute” and draw in pencil.
- Mark-by-mark questions – verbally answer exam questions by going around the room and asking the students to give you one mark towards a 6-mark question. You can elicit much better responses and encourage the kind of thinking they will need when doing the exam questions themselves. You can even do this before giving them practice questions to boost their confidence!
- Writing exam questions – assign students topics and ask them to write exam questions on that part of the curriculum with a mark scheme. Be specific with how many marks the question should be worth so the students start to understand the expectation of different types of question. The questions might not be perfect, but the kids will have to read their notes and the textbook in order to write the questions (and therefore revise!). Swap the questions and the next group doesn’t answer the question, they just give feedback on post-it notes: is the question confusing? Would they have scored full marks or does it need re-wording? Do they think it’s too hard/easy for a 6-mark question? Finally, swap again and get students to do each other’s exam questions.
- Walking talking mock – if you have the time available (a double lesson or possibly in an after school or weekend revision session) it may be worth leading your students through a ‘walking talking’ mock exam. Showing them on a large display how you would interpret, break down and answer each question in a mock exam can be incredibly useful. Many students find a massive confidence boost in ‘doing’ an exam with you guiding them through it, especially if they’ve only experienced assessed mocks.
Follow these links for some more revision and intervention ideas:
- Running Intervention in 3 Simple Steps
- Revision Ideas x 60
- Mr Thornton Teach – Revision Ideas
- The Confident Teacher – Top 10 Revision Strategies
- Mrs Humanities – How to Revise in Geography (but applicable to most subjects!)