By Ben Arcuri
It is so simple, provide a student with some guidance and time to get better and then offer another opportunity to show if his or her understanding and learning has improved. From my experience, a student’s understanding WILL improve, and you have started the most important change in that student’s educational life. This might sound dramatic but it’s not. I’ve seen it happen, and it not only changes the students’ lives, but it will change yours as well.
Here is how I do it and why it works so well. Continue reading
By Ben Arcuri
There is no bigger topic in education these days than the topic of assessment. Assessment has many definitions depending on who is doing the talking. The purpose of assessments and the intended users of assessment information differ tremendously as well. Assessment can serve as a guide to the students; it has the ability to guide the teacher and can also drive education policy and reform. Continue reading
Posted in Assessment Practices, Feeback, Formative Assessment, Ideas, Summer Conference
Tagged Assessment, assessment practices, ATI Summer Conference, Classroom Assessment, Classroom Instruction, Formative assessment, strategies
By Tom Schimmer
For an assessment to serve a truly formative purpose, it needs to cause some action by the teacher and students. In other words, the information gleaned must have the potential to illicit an instructional change or adjustment going forward. The word potential is important here because the resulting assessment information will not always lead to instructional changes since the assessments may confirm that what the teacher has planned for the next fifteen minutes is the most favorable direction to take. The point is that the teacher be in a position to consider those changes in real-time; that a teacher have the instructional agility to make the necessary maneuvers in as short a time as possible.
Formative assessment is a verb. When we view formative assessment as a noun we create two challenges. First, the assessment-as-noun mindset is one that views assessments as a series of events. This event focus creates the illusion that every time teachers assess their students they must create something tangible to hand out. Second, an event-based view of assessment infers that a teacher must “stop teaching” in order to “conduct” their formative assessments. While there is nothing inherently wrong with this approach in small, periodic doses, those who view assessments as nouns will find the prospect of day-by-day, minute-by-minute formative assessment daunting as they ponder the number artifacts they must create and collect. It’s no wonder some teachers proclaim that they “don’t have time for formative assessment.” Continue reading