Multiple choice learning activities are the bane of our existence. They offer no creative thinking and are WAY TOO EASY to cheat on.
Take the reading comprehension app N used in school. It included passages about clouds, and asked to identify paragraphs as introductions, captions etc.
N is a purpose driven kid, so he really couldn’t see the point in doing it.
Instead, he very efficiently did this:
1. Click on a button and wait for the cross or tick.
2. If it’s wrong, redo and pick another answer.
3. Repeat until the answer is correct.
Essentially, he was memorising the correct answers to create the final 100% at the end of the activity.
1. Use passages that are ACTUALLY FUN for the student! For N, he’d definitely like ‘Top 5 deadliest animals’.
2. No multiple choice – just get the student to paraphrase what they’ve learnt from the text, and ask them open-ended questions like ‘How does the spider release its venom?’.
Trying to make an irrelevant topic relevant, will not motivate the student.
Following from above, there was no way I could convince N to do reading comprehension.
So … I introduced a new activity instead:
MAKE A VIDEO READING COMPREHENSION
Earlier in the day, N mentioned how in Noosa, he boogieboarded on a huge wave. This led us to watch a video about the ‘largest wave ever surfed’.
That’s when I began to quiz him on the video content. E.g ‘how tall was the wave?’, ‘where was it?’. There was some writing too so i asked him to read it out.
Different medium, same skills.