My post today is about a cool article I read on a low-stakes type of writing assignment that I think could be wildly helpful to my students. Julie Empric calls this assignment, “Afterthoughts.” In short, Afterthoughts eliminate the brain dump that often occurs at precisely the time when students exit the classroom. Instead, students are asked to interact with the material in ways they may not have previously. I think this technique, described below, is very much in line with the Cognitively Active (deep learning) study approaches that I presented last week.
In short, the Afterthoughts assignment has students write about what happened in the class session. From this template, the Afterthought should:
- follow-up on an important point covered in class,
- raise questions about what was discussed in class,
- link ideas presented in several different class sessions,
- correct, adjust, or extend an Afterthought someone else presented in class, or
- connect course content with something on TV, a film, the Internet, in a book, with content from another course, or with something the student experienced. Continue reading