Pop quizzes, the veggies of learning, let knowledge take root

POP QUIZZES, like vegetables, are not immediately appealing. However, they provide long-term benefits by entrenching ideas with consistent motivation to study repeated exposure to test-like questions.

Illustration: Isabel Saavedra-Weis

POP QUIZZES, like vegetables, are not immediately appealing. However, they provide long-term benefits by entrenching ideas with consistent motivation to study repeated exposure to test-like questions.

Isabel Saavedra-Weis, Staff Writer

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Pop quizzes are like the vegetable of education: not generally enjoyed, but good for the brain. Pop quizzes help teachers and students alike, so one should be offered in each and every unit of each and every discipline.

Although pop quizzes get an unpopular groan whenever announced in class, motivated learners should be thankful for them. Pop quizzes are an invaluable teaching tool because they keep students on their toes. They help ensure students do the homework thoroughly and focus in class in case a pop quiz ever comes up.

Pop quizzes are an invaluable teaching tool because they keep students on their toes.”

Pop quizzes add an element of pressure, making students prepare more before each class. Cassandra Willyard wrote in Science Magazine that a student that takes practice quizzes in order to study for an exam does three times better than a student who just reviews the material once. Pop quizzes, like practice quizzes, help students see whether their study techniques really work or if they need to find a better way to study when the real test comes along.

The an article from the Union University Center of Faculty Development said that daily pop quizzes ensure that “students tend to actually read the material.”

Pop quizzes also serve as a starting point for those who do not know where to begin studying. They “provide students with a real foundation for intellectual growth,” the article stated.
These quizzes are not just for students, either. Pop quizzes indicate to teachers whether the information they are teaching is reaching the student’s brains and staying there.

Pop quizzes indicate to teachers whether the information they are teaching is reaching the student’s brains and staying there.”

“Understanding a students’ learning progress—as frequently as possible—is critical for teachers to continuously improve their instruction and do their jobs well,” The Bridgespan Group said.

In classes with vocabulary words to memorize or formulas to know, teachers should start giving small pop quizzes. However, these quizzes should only act as an indicator of progress and not something to stress about. A very low amount of points, ten points maximum, should be available for these quizzes, and it should take no longer than ten minutes to take it as to not cause anxiety.

Just like there should be a portion of every plate should be filled with vegetables, a section of school curriculum should include a pop quiz or two for learning’s sake.

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