Sometimes before a test there’s nothing to do but get through a pile of practice exercises. This is never particularly motivating, and that’s even more the case when it is grammar, especially the present perfect.
…there’s something quite powerful about doing revision exercises in groups. Students have to work through their thought process to explain their answer to their neighbours, and by doing so reinforce or question their decisions. It not always the stronger students that lead the discussion, in fact I find the contrary to be the case.
I have also noticed that students often understand better when something is explained by another student rather than by myself, this doesn’t say much about my teaching!
As I write this I’m listening in on a great learning moment between a couple of students who are deciding whether I have “still forgotten” the German I learnt at school.
I still think that there is a place for teacher- led correction, and I see that my students still expect me to “give” the final answer, but by letting them work it out first I have given them the opportunity to discover exactly what they understand first.
Saying that, one student has just asked me if Aristotle is still alive, so I guess there’s still a place for me in the classsroom!