In my Science Solutions series, I answer common questions from teachers.
My campus has taken on something called Math Review as part of our Balanced Math program. It’s a simple, but effective idea that is used in grades K-5.
I’ve felt left out since I don’t teach math, but after listening to my colleagues at a few trainings, I figured out how to apply the same idea to science.
Enter… Science Review
We do Science Review four days a week (Monday-Thursday) for the last 10 minutes of class. This is BRAND NEW in my classroom, but I’m already seeing good things. I’m sure it will be tweaked as we go to make it stronger, but I wanted to share.
Purpose of Science Review
Students get practice using their test-taking strategies and reviewing previously taught content in a structured way.
Planning Science Review
My partner suggested starting with 2 questions, which turned out to be the perfect amount. I’m not sure we will ever do more than 3 questions.
The very first content standard we taught was TEKS 5.5A Classifying Matter Based on Physical Properties. This is an important Readiness standard, one students have a history of struggling with, and one of of our campus Focus SEs.
Most of the students were pretty strong with conductors vs. insulators, so 1 question each day was planned for that standard. Density is a property that we also need to review, so 1 question each day focused on that.
I used a variety of resources and my huge stock of clip art to make the question pages. They are half sheets to save some paper since right now Science Review is kinda paper heavy. I really need the students writing on the questions to practice, so it’s necessary.
The questions are multiple choice format right now. I don’t know what direction they may go in the future.
Based on my block, this seemed best to do at the end of class to wrap up the day before the kiddos pack up and change classes. Doing Science Review really makes us use every single minute.
Implementing Science Review
I taught students SUPER (out test strategy) in small groups recently, so they were familiar with how to use it to approach questions. That made it easy getting this set up.
Effects of Science Review
The effects are yet to be seen, really. I’m totally aware of correlation vs. causation, but I’m going with it anyway. Here’s what I’m seeing:
1. Students scored high scores on their End of Unit tests today. They seem to be applying the test-taking strategies from Science Review during their exams. #teacherwinning
2. The end of the class period is very structured and we use every last instructional minute.
3. Kids are excited about improving day to day.
4. They are learning test-taking strategies without it monopolizing our entire class period.
5. We are reviewing previously learned standards while new content is still being taught.
I’ll let you know how it goes!