The students are organised into small groups and it is important that the groups are of similar ability so peer groups are not appropriate. Each group gets the same list of six to eight questions.
Each group cuts up the question sheet into individual questions and starts with the question that they feel is the easiest. The group works together to brainstorm the answer to each question, using their books if they wish. When the group has an answer, they write it and their team on the question slip and take it to the teacher. The teacher scores the answer while the students work on the next question and maintains a running score for each team on the board. Each answer is scored out of 3, with a fully correct answer earning 3 out of 3. An answer that goes beyond what has been done in class scores 4 out of 3. At the end of the class, the teacher selects the best answer to each question and upgrades it to 5 out of 3. The 5 out of 3 answers are pasted onto a sheet and copied to provide the notes on the questions for each student. Teams that score 1 or 2 on any question can come and retrieve their slip and have a second attempt.
The procedure involves a (friendly) competition (with perhaps a
small prize for the winning team). It can also be regarded as an
assignment with each member getting his or her team score. Ian
Mitchell, who developed the procedure, reported that a very positive
outcome was that every team had a good final score and so all students
A variation is described by Darren Mead (Trajan s Column and the 5 from 3 Quiz) Here the students had spent a number of lessons working relatively autonomously on a science project and Darren did not have a strong sense of the extent to which they had identified and understood the "science". Accordingly, he set a set of questions that would enable him to find out what had been learnt and how well and ran it in the way described above. This was very successful.