Novel Ideas Only



This is a useful strategy to check for understanding in a group setting. It helps teachers determine if they need to reteach content to the group. This is often used as a closure activity at the end of a period of instruction.


The teacher poses a question or task; typically, students are asked to make a list of at least three items. Students then individually respond on a scrap piece of paper. When they have done so, students stand up. The teacher then randomly calls on a student to share one of his or her ideas from the paper. Students check off any items that are said by another student and sit down when all of their ideas have been shared with the group, whether or not they were the one to share them. The teacher continues to call on students until they are all seated. As the teacher listens to the ideas, he or she can determine if there is a general level of understanding or if there are gaps in students’ thinking.




HPE water safety lesson where students have to identify risk factors around water. After writing individually for several minutes, the students stood up and the teacher asks students to share one factor at a time. The teacher analyses the responses and notes the factors that most students had on their own pages. The teacher also notes the factors that are not addressed by the students and provided work or discussions that highlight the overlooked factors.

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