Exit Slips

Exit slips are written student responses to questions teachers pose at the end of a class or lesson. These quick, informal assessments enable teachers to quickly assess students' understanding of the material.


When to use: Before reading During reading After reading
How to use: Individually With small groups Whole class setting

Why use exit slips?

  • They provide teachers with an informal measure of how well students have understood a topic or lesson.
  • They help students reflect on what they have learned.
  • They allow students to express what or how they are thinking about new information.
  • They teach students to think critically.



How to use exit slips

  1. At the end of your lesson ask students to respond to a question or prompt.

    Note: There are three categories of exit slips (Fisher & Frey, 2004):

    • Prompts that document learning:
      — Example: Write one thing you learned today.
      — Example: Discuss how today's lesson could be used in the real world.

    • Prompts that emphasize the process of learning:
      — Example: I didn't understand…
      — Example: Write one question you have about today's lesson.

    • Prompts to evaluate the effectiveness of instruction:
      — Example: Did you enjoy working in small groups today?

    • Other exit prompts include:
      — I would like to learn more about…
      — Please explain more about…
      — The thing that surprised me the most today was…
      — I wish…
  2. You may state the prompt orally to your students or project it visually on an overhead or blackboard.
  3. You may want to distribute 3 x 5 cards for students to write down their responses.
  4. Review the exit slips to determine how you may need to alter your instruction to better meet the needs of all your students.
  5. Collect the exit slips as a part of an assessment portfolio for each student.

Download blank template

Collect resources

See how one third grade teacher uses exit slips with her "What Stuck With You Today?" board.

Content area exit slip examples

  • Write one thing you learned today
  • Write one question you have about today's lesson
  • Write three words with the long "o" sound
  • Why are the North and South Pole so cold?
  • Explain why Canada is not considered a melting pot
  • Draw a quick diagram that shows perspective
  • Of the 3 graphs we studied today which one did you find most useful? Why?
  • Name one positive and one negative thing that happened during group work today
  • Multiply 3 by 4

Find more information about exit slips from ReadWriteThink.

Differentiated instruction

For second language learners, students of varying reading skill, students with learning disabilities, and younger learners

  • Have a variety of exit slips and differentiate which students get which ones
  • Allow students to work on their exit slips in pairs or small groups
  • Allow students to verbally express the information

See the research that supports this strategy

Bafile, C. (2004). "Let It Slip!" Daily Exit Slips Help Teachers Know What Students Really Learned.

Fisher, D., and Frey, N. (2004). Improving Adolescent Literacy: Strategies at Work. New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Children's books to use with this strategy

Fly Away Home

Fly Away Home

By: Eve Bunting
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

A homeless boy and his dad make their home in a busy airport.

The Other Side

The Other Side

By: Jacqueline Woodson
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Clover and Annie — one black, the other white — are separated by a fence and attitudes that want to prevent their friendship.



By: Peter Golembock
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

This illustrated vignette from the career of Jackie Robinson, the first African American to play baseball in the major leagues, depicts his strength and that of his teammate Pee Wee Reese, who stood together against the prejudice of both fans and players. This powerful story makes the life and times of Robinson come alive for younger readers.


A very comprehensive explanation...differentiated learning concept is really beneficial! keep up the good work

This concept is wonderful... For a student who struggles to follow lessons, or has trouble comprehending lesson; this really helps me to evaluate what s/he needs more help on. My students are thriving!

I like this concept and plan to use it this fall in all my classes. thanks!

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"Today a reader, tomorrow a leader." — Margaret Fuller