I think the worst part of exam invigilation for me is the knowledge that I have so much marking waiting for me and how much I'd rather be doing that so that I might free up a few hours for personal time this weekend.
But we teachers are an inventive bunch. We can budget our way through the month. We can create a library of books through no more than kind donations solicited at parties. We can see the good in EVERY student - even the one who sits at the back and picks his nose. And so we can find ways to entertain ourselves during an exam. I present to you a number of tricks of the trade shared with me by veteran teachers. Some I have tried - others I dare not. Maybe you will be more bold!
For the mathematically inclined:
- count the number of bricks in the wall/ tiles on the ceiling/ students with black hair/ students in violation of dress code
- calculate the height of a tower formed by stacking all the bricks in a wall/ how many children would be at the base of the pyramid created by stacking all students (one on top, two under him etc) - there is actually an equation for this, which I came up with in today's exam/ how many average sized sheep will be needed to fill the volume of the hall
For the psychologically inclined:
- divide the students into categories based on extrovert vs introvert
- decide which Hogwarts house each student would fall into
- take a stab at their future career path
If you are lucky enough to have more than one invigilator:
- have a competition of who can answer the most questions/ hand out the most paper/ catch the most cribbers
- play a game of "identify the..." In which you select a category like "most likely to succeed" and each teacher stands next to their vote. See if you agree.
- play a game of chicken where you each start on opposite ends of the same isle and take it in turns to step towards each other. The first to veer off course is labelled "chicken"
I am sure that there are many more ideas and strategies that you may have come up with. Please share them in the comments below so that we all may benefit in these difficult times. In desperate times, please refer to the ideas presented in the video below (but these are strategies only to be used in the case of extreme emergency!) And remember: what happens in the exam venue, stays in the exam venue. Cone of silence.