Assessment for, of and as learning

Take some time to explore the resource, noting especially the specific strategies you can use for formative assessment.
Explore YouTube and Pinterest for formative assessment ideas. Record
 any useful resources you have found in your journal.

10 aspects of strategic questioning from the AITSL website. As well as asking open questions, using wait time and prompting students, these were the ones that I liked:

  • Preparing key questions. In their lesson planning teachers identify the learning intention for the lesson and a small number of key questions related to that learning intention. These are the questions that the teacher wants the students to be able to answer by the end of the lesson. Key questions give shape to a lesson by keeping the focus on the learning intention and assist teachers in their assessment of what students have learnt.
  • Hands down. ‘Hands down’ is a strategy used by teachers in association with wait time. Its purpose is to encourage greater student participation in lessons and to make more passive students aware that their contributions are both required and valued. In their interviews teachers describe how they deal with the challenges associated with changing this entrenched aspect of classroom culture and the beneficial results that can be obtained by implementing it.
  • Building on ‘wrong’ answers. The teacher’s capacity to build on student responses; in particular those responses that are incorrect, inadequate or show faulty thinking; is an important element in building a classroom culture in which students are prepared to ‘have a go’ without fear of failure.
  • Acknowledging student responses positively. Responding positively to students is another way that the teacher creates a classroom culture in which the students feel valued and, therefore, more willing to participate in a lesson. Research emphasises the significance of the link between student self-esteem and motivation to learn.
  • Distributing questions around the classroom. Strategic questioning only achieves maximum impact if questions are distributed around the classroom rather than directed to a few willing students.
  • Encouraging students to ask questions. Encouraging students to ask questions of each other and of the teacher is an important aspect of strategic questioning. In the interviews the teachers describe how they model the asking of questions and the strategies they use to provide students with opportunities to ask questions. The classroom footage contains examples of students asking questions of each other.

Further afield, I follow the Teach Learn Grow education blog and they are often posting about formative assessment strategies.

I particularly like these two:

Entrance Tickets – We’ve blogged about and explained The Exit Ticket, so why not have an Entrance Ticket? Here the teacher asks a question at the start of a lesson and students write their responses on index cards or strips of paper. She uses them to assess initial understanding of something to be discussed in that day’s lesson or as a short summary of understanding of the previous day’s lesson. The teacher designs the lesson around the fact that information on student learning will be coming in at the start of the lesson and can be used to improve the teaching and learning in that lesson. She designs the question so it is easily interpreted and analysed, allows time for herself and/or the students to analyze the responses, and adjusts the lesson accordingly (if needed).

Keep the Question Going – With this formative assessment technique, the teacher asks one student a question and then asks another student if that answer seems reasonable or correct. Then, he asks a third student for an explanation of why there is an agreement or not. This helps keep all the students engaged because they must be prepared to either agree or disagree with the answers given and provide explanations.

And lastly, there are  10 Assessments You Can Perform In 90 Seconds at TeachThought. Using formative assessment techniques in class – or “simple assessments” as Terry Heick calls them – are easy to administer and provide the instant feedback teachers need to identify which students need more help, and then adjust their instruction and lesson plans to help them. – See more at: https://www.nwea.org/blog/2013/22-easy-formative-assessment-techniques-for-measuring-student-learning/#sthash.lyHfIVVL.dpuf

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