This strategy is meant to keep students actively engaged while you perform a quick and easy check for understanding. At any point in the lesson, you can pose a question to your students and rather than hearing from just one or two students, you get to see everyone’s answer.
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How to Use
Create a set of student response cards for each student. Cards can be created with index cards or different colored pieces of paper or cardstock. They can be labeled with answer choices, such as A, B, C, D, or color-coded, such as green for yes and red for no. Put sets of cards in an envelope or punch a hole in the top left corner of each card and attach cards with a ring. See template below for another option to creating cards.
Pose a question to the class regarding information just covered in your lesson. Have students hold up their card with the corresponding answer to your question.
Perform a quick scan across the classroom to see each student’s answer. This gives you an idea of who has a grasp on the information presented and who does not.
When to Use
Use Student Response Cards at any time during a lesson to check for understanding:
Periodically throughout the input section of the lesson to keep students engaged
During Independent Practice to gauge understanding
When playing a review game where students answer questions
At the beginning of a lesson to activate prior knowledge
At the end of a lesson to check for overall understanding of important concepts
As an alternative to cards, you can use a piece of paper with answer choices. With this template, students simply hold their paper in front of them with their finger on their answer choice. Students can color the squares for color-coded responses or even cut out the quares to make their own cards.
Instead of cards or pieces of paper, have students use and hold up colored popsicle sticks to represent their answer to the posed question.
Pinch or Clip Cards
Instead of having a separate card for multiple choice (ABCD) answers, print all letters on a single card. To indicate their answer, students will "pinch" their answer by covering the letter with their thumb and placing the forefinger behind the letter on the card. Or, students can "clip" their answer choice using a plastic clothes pin.
Vary the words on the response cards based on the subject area/content being taught. For example the response choices could be words such as add/subtract, true/false, mammal/reptile, fact/opinioin, etc.
Use this template to create multiple choice cards. Add a blank red card and a blank green card students can use to indicate “yes” or “true” (green card) and “no” or “false” (red card). Depending on your content area, response cards can be created with for categories of information: for example, the parts of a cell in science; the different properties in math; verb endings in a language class; parts of government in social studies class. As new concepts are covered, students add cards to the rings or envelope in which they are housed. At the end of the unit or semester, cards can be used for a global review.
High School French teacher.
Del Valle ISD, Texas