The muddiest point is a writing-to-learn strategy where students express what they are most unsure about and/or any questions that may remain after a lesson. This allows students to learn by writing down their reflections.
This strategy can be used in different ways in the classroom, although it is most commonly used at the end of a lesson or at the end of a series of lessons. This allows students to use their writing to reflect on key learning and remaining questions or uncertainties. The muddiest point could be written on scrap paper, cue cards or pre-prepared slips and handed in to the teacher, or students could complete this writing in their language notebooks.
During practicum, the muddiest point strategy was used after a series of lessons on persuasive writing. Students were asked to write down what they were still confused about or any questions they may have still had about how to use persuasive writing strategies. While students struggled slightly with the process of reflection, it was an effective exercise for the teacher to gauge student understanding of the concepts, and for the students to monitor their own understanding. I believe this strategy would be most effective if it were used consistently (e.g. daily, weekly), as this would give students the chance to develop their metacognition and reflection skills.
Ontario Ministry of Education. (2012). Capacity Building Series No.25 “Writing to Learn.”