Sunday, 23 June 2013

What does Assessment look like?

NOTE:  This post is the second in a miniseries on Assessment and Evaluation in the classroom, aimed at providing support both to my teacher colleagues and to parents of school children. 

What does Assessment look like?

Assessment takes place before, during and after every kind of learning.  It can be either formal or informal.  It can include traditional tests, quizzes and pencil and paper assignments.  But it also includes observation, presentations, performance tasks, interviews, checklists, and ongoing oral and written student work.  Because a lot of today’s assessment is informal and ongoing it may not appear visible to parents and sometimes not even to the students themselves.  But the effective classroom teacher is keeping checklists, observation notes, anecdotal records, and maybe even photographs of student work to help him/her make decisions about the student learning that happens in their class every day.
Here assessment looks like a student using what she knows about floating and sinking to design a “boat” that will hold 10 marbles. She explains her design to the teacher and the class, and the teacher takes  a photo to include in the student’s folder for easy reference when it is time to complete the end of unit evaluation.

Assessment might also look like a standard diagnostic tool.
Here, a running record offers good diagnostic information as well as indications of progression in student reading and comprehension. 

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