(I thought it might be helpful to readers and myself if I described some of my favorite activities from time to time. See all my ESL Activity Corner posts here.)
Did your students learn what you think they learned today? Ask them a brief question at the end of class, and have them hand it in on a post-it on their way out the door.
Checking for Understanding
You can use exit tickets to check for understanding. For example, if one of the session’s main objectives was working on thesis statements, exit ticket questions might be,
What is a thesis statement?
Write one example of a thesis statement.
If you’re working on the grammatical form of Present Continuous, you might say,
Write a sentence in Present Continuous.
Alternatively, the exit questions can be metacognitive:
What was the point of today’s lesson? might elicit interesting and/or sassy responses.
What was the most difficult part of today’s lesson? might also be illuminating.
Another useful one might be, Do you need to improve any technology skills to be more comfortable in this class? Which ones?
After handing back a major assignment, something like this might help a few people find time to head to the tutoring center: Are you satisfied with your essay grade? If not, what is your plan to get additional help to improve your results?
Some teachers use this activity at the end of every class session, and others just sometimes. Give it a try and see what you find out!