California Educator

June/July 2022

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Review Activities That Kids Actually Like How to liven up content review and make the information stick By Sarah Gonser M E A N I N G F U L C O N T E N T R E V I E W activities start with a solid understanding of "where students are weak and where there is already good understanding," says eighth-grade math teacher Tara Maynard in an article published by AMLE, the Association for Mid- dle Level Education. To make reviews more engaging, or even fun, you need to find the right balance between e•ectiveness and motivation, mixing evidence-backed tactics that improve retention with gamification, group work or movement. A great review activity is self-checking — students don't need teacher input to assess the accuracy of their answers. It allows for some student choice, and builds in partner work, says Maynard. Kids can cover more ground at their own pace information with other sources, such as experts, scholarly journals, and reputable news sites. 2. It's OK to use Wikipedia. Wineburg found that fact-checkers often use Wiki- pedia as a jumping-o point, as a portal to more authoritative sources. A Wikipe- dia article can help students learn about peer review, sourcing, footnotes, and internet research. It's a myth that anyone can change what's on a Wikipedia page. 3. Work on productive skimming. " You don't have to read everything on a website to make a decision," says Wine- burg. It's difficult, if not impossible, to spot misinformation based on the orig- inal source's claim. Instead, get a quick sense of the content by scanning the page, and then do a Google search and open more sites to see if the information is supported by other sources. Go back to your original page for deeper reading after assessing the claims more broadly. 4. Don't be fooled by appearances. Today, slick websites are very attainable and aordable. Just because a site looks professional doesn't mean it's trustworthy. It's also easier than ever to purchase .org and .com domain names, and using those suxes to determine a site's reliability is a mistake that students often make. 5. Create a list of go-to sources. Talk with students about how to develop a roster of reputable, go-to sites — trusted resources from across the political spec- trum from e Wall Street Journal to e New York Times, government agencies such as the FDA and the EPA, and inde- pendent research organizations like the National Science Foundation and NASA, for example. Also talk about bad-faith outliers on both sides of the political divide, like Daily Kos and Breitbart News, and explain why relying on reputable, well-established publications is a critical part of smart media literacy. is article originally appeared in Edutopia. 5 46 Teaching & Learning

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