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Categorizing Grid (classroom)
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Process of facilitating a Categorizing Grid active learning activity in a classroom
Time and Effort
|Instructor Prep Time||Low|
|Student Activity Time||Low|
|Instructor Response Time||Low|
|Complexity of Activity||Low|
Categorizing Grid involves the sorting of ideas into categories. Students receive a grid containing two or three categories along with a scrambled list of terms, images, equations, or other items that belong in those categories. Learners have a limited amount of time to sort the concepts into the correct categories.
Use it when you want...
- To determine whether, how, and to what extent students understand what goes with what,
- To have students reveal the implicit rules they are using to categorize information, or
- To examine gaps and misperceptions in students’ understanding of content.
What students will need
- No special requirements for this approach.
The following workflow is meant as guidance for how you can facilitate Categorizing Grid learning activity within a classroom.
- Select two or three related categories for organizing the information to be presented in class.
- Make a list of examples of items within each category. Review the list to make sure that all items belong to only one category and that all items are familiar to students.
- Make a grid with the categories on the top row and items to be placed in categories on the side.
- Determine when you will have students engage in this activity (beginning, middle, end, or outside of class).
- Decide whether students will work alone, in pairs, or in small groups.
- Set up students into groups.
- Hand out and display the grid.
- Explain the activity.
- Leave time for students to ask questions about the activity and clarify items on the list.
- Let students know how much time they have to complete the activity.
- Collect the completed grids and let students know when and how you will use the results.
- Collect grids.
- Review grids and provide feedback/grades based on the quality of the grids.
- Discuss the results of the activity at the next class meeting.
Accessibility and Room Considerations
- The wearing of masks by students (particularly in large lecture halls) may make it difficult for students to hear one another when they are asked to speak. All classrooms that are large enough to normally require a microphone already have a microphone system with a communal clip-on pickup element. Further information about the availability of additional clip-on or headset microphone elements will be coming soon. View the instructions and short videos below to assist with the use of the microphones and the portable systems:
Angelo, Thomas A., and K. Patricia Cross. Classroom Assessment Techniques: a Handbook for College Teacher/em>. Jossey-Bass, 1993. pp. 160-163.