The latest addition to my Quick Quizzes is the Tense Test. Rather than testing knowledge using multiple choice, form-manipulation, or fill-in quiz on tenses, stick to a simple either/or comprehension check, then get back to providing input and encouraging interaction…
Instead of True/False, students write X/Present for whichever tense you use (e.g. past/present, future/present, imperfect-ish tense/present, really obscure tense/present, etc.). N.B. In beginning years, the purpose of this Quick Quiz is to get a score for the gradebook while exposing students to different tenses, not to test whether they know the different forms!
Option 1: use a picture
Option 2: no-prep, use nothing
Use this option if you have a very, very clear picture (e.g. student drawn, Picture Talk, paused MovieTalk clip, whatever). Say anything for the X tense, but describe exactly what’s going on for the present. Tense Tests can be as obvious as you’d like appropriate to the level you’re teaching. Here are some examples:
N.B. Expected student responses, on the tiny papers and that will be reviewed immediately following the quiz are in bold:
Past/Present: There is a cat.
Past/Present: Now, the cat is standing.
Future/Present: The cat sees us.
Past/Present: The cat was in Rome.
Past/Present: Yesterday, the cat was standing.
Future/Present: Soon, the cat will see us.
On the spot, say anything. Then, offer students the choice of “X/Present.” N.B. If what you just said was in the present tense, add any other tense as that other option. If what you said was a different tense, be sure to include that in the options!
With the addition of the Tense Test, the total no-prep quizzes comes to 6, which you can read more about on the Input-Based Strategies & Activities post:
Vocab Quick Quiz
Picture Quick Quiz
Classroom Quick Quiz