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It is no secret that the key to a successful education is engaging classroom learning activities. However, with so many different teaching methods and materials available, it can be difficult to know where to start.
One of the most popular and exciting learning methods that both teachers keep coming back to involve trivia. Not only is kids’ trivia fun and interactive for both teachers and students, but it also allows for a more hands-on and social approach to learning. Here are a few ideas on how you can incorporate trivia into your classroom:
1. Create trivia teams
This is a great opportunity to get students excited about learning. Host a trivia day where students can compete in teams, either against other classrooms or against other grades. This is particularly helpful when a younger classroom has just learned about a particular subject, such as US Presidents trivia. Your 5th graders who just learned about all the US presidents can compete against the 6th graders to see how much they remember from the previous year.
2. Create a trivia game show
Alternatively, you can set up your own trivia game show for your classroom using a format similar to Jeopardy. Students will get to choose between various categories and get points for the questions they answer correctly. You can choose categories based on the current subjects your students are learning at the moment. For example, Animal Trivia is a category that is always popular among young students.
3. Use Trivia as a Reward
Students love being rewarded for their hard work. Use trivia questions as a way to reward students for completing tasks or meeting goals. For example, you can reward their knowledge and pride of their own school by quizzing the students on the history of their school, school principal, etc. If they answer more than 75% of the questions correctly, they get an extra 10 minutes of recess.
4. Make Trivia Part of Your Lesson
Add trivia into your lesson plans to spice things up allow students to learn and retain information in different formats. Younger students will quickly loose focus in lecture style teaching formats, even if you are trying to engage your students through discussion. Taking a trivia quiz requires your students to focus specifically on the quiz at hand and the material that you are trying to get them to retain.
5. Make trivia a part of a theme day
If your school has a spirit week, see how you can incorporate trivia learning into one of the days. For example, if one of the days is Star Wars day, you can spend time quizzing your class on Star Wars Trivia questions. You can plan these questions out in advance and play a short clip that verifies the correct answer to each of the questions. A much more fun and engaging way to watch Star Wars without having to watch all of the movies!
6. Celebrate holidays with trivia
As you’re getting ready for Thanksgiving, fill in part of the day with Thanksgiving trivia. You can structure the trivia based on the age of your classroom. For third graders, spend a half hour period decorating the classroom pin-up turkey on the bulletin board. Each time the class correctly answers a question they get to add a feather pin to the turkey. For a high school Spanish class, translate the questions into Spanish and quiz your students on easy Thanksgiving trivia questions either verbally or in print.
7. Take advantage of technology
Finally, don’t forget to take advantage of technology. There are many online trivia games and apps that you can use in your classroom. These can be used as a supplement to your lesson or as a way to review material that was covered in class. For example, when learning about geography, instead of assigning a homework quiz for your students to take home and complete overnight, have your students take a geography trivia quiz on a tablet or computer at home. The following day, the student with the highest score gets recognized for their achievement or wins a small prize. This will help make the material more memorable and help students realize that there are ways that online learning can be used outside of the classroom.
Trivia is a great way to engage students and make learning fun. With a little creativity, you can use trivia for classroom learning in many different ways to supplement your lesson plans and help your students learn and retain information.