With multiple students scheduled to take both the Algebra and Geometry EOC exams tomorrow and Wednesday, followed by the Biology EOC on Thursday, today was the final day available for a whole-class content review. We used the class period to play a special biology edition of Jeopardy! Students partnered with one or two other students and they worked together as a group to answer questions using white boards. With only 45 seconds to answer each question, students had to draw primarily from content they have already mastered. Several of the questions came directly from previous Biology EOC practice exams, with the intent to prepare students as well as possible for what they will experience on Thursday (although they will not have notes available to consult during the exam).
Before we begin our next unit (mitosis), we took a step back to review how far we’ve come during our first five units of biology this year. To review, we played a PowerPoint version of Jeopardy! It was a lot of fun watching students work in small groups to arrive at their responses to the questions. The game template was provided to me by another teacher and may be used and/or modified as desired by any interested users.
Tomorrow, students will be taking a practice biology end-of-course exam designed to introduce them to the rigor of a full exam but within the time constraints of a class period. The real exam does not have the same time constraints. Students will not be able to use any other resources while taking the practice exam. They will receive participation credit for taking the exam, not for how well they do. In fact, students will identify themselves by student number, an identifier that provides anonymity during the scoring phase of the exam. While some level of test anxiety is inevitable, I want to emphasize that this exam is solely for practice and self-assessment purposes. Students should come away with a deeper understanding of their current level of knowledge about biology, gaps in knowledge, appreciation for EOC test structure, and a plan to fill knowledge gaps. Please get a good night’s sleep, eat breakfast, bring a snack if needed, and come prepared and focused. We will score the exams on Wednesday and then launch the mitosis unit on Thursday.