Reflections are a great way to get kids thinking about their learning. And this metacognition can help students be more prepared for academic challenges.
Every Friday, I have students answer a reflection question in their composition books. I like to do this consistently to not only practice their reflection muscles but also for them to know what to expect on a weekly basis.
Kids don't know how to answer these types of questions, so I model how to answer a reflection question. I'll give them a starter sentence and I explain that the answer to the question is not the point, but the explanation behind the answer is where the metacognition happens.
Students write their answers in English so that they can express their thoughts completely. This is not the time for them to practice their language skills. I want them to be able to thoroughly answer and explain their answer so that they can get the maximum benefit.
The reflections are extremely insightful. As I read through the weekly reflections, I learn a lot about my students, what is working for them, what things can be tweaked, and what is not working for them.
Sometimes what they say can sting, so you have to have a thick skin and don't take anything they write personally.
But I think the benefits surely outweigh any negatives as there is so much to be gained from having students do them and your reading them.
Here are 25 reflection questions you can use in your class tomorrow!
- How did the first week go in Spanish class?
- What activities in Spanish are helping you learn the most and why?
- What challenges are you facing learning Spanish?
- What can I do as your teacher to help you learn better?
- What can you do as a student to improve your Spanish?
- Which activities in class help you learn Spanish best?
- In what ways have you gotten better at Spanish?
- What skills do you need to work on after the quarter exam?
- How do you feel about your free write this week? / How did you help the class this week?
- What did you learn this week?
- What are some things you do in the classroom that you believe can help other people learn?
- What are some things your classmates do that prevent you from learning?
- Thinking about what you’ve accomplished in Spanish, what are you most proud of?
- What made you curious this week?
- What lessons were learned from failure this week?
- What can I do to help you more?
- How did you help the class this week?
- How did you hinder the class this week?
- What can you do next week to help other learners more?
- What is frustrating you? How do you plan to deal with that frustration?
- What about your thinking, learning, or work this week brought you the most satisfaction? Why?
- Where did you encounter struggle this week, and what did you do to deal with it?
- Why do you think learning Spanish is important?
- Where did you meet success this year, and who might benefit most from what you’ve learned along the way? How can you share this with them?
- How did your classmates help you learn today?