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How to effectively assess student learning

Kristen Shand

on 7 February 2013

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Transcript of Assessment

Why do I need a Lesson Introduction?
access prior knowledge
draw students into the topic (sponge activity)
get students excited (anticipatory set/Hook) Planning an Effective Lesson Why do I need to
access prior knowledge? How do I draw students
into the lesson?
make it personal
make it relevant
make it interesting Decide what you want your students to know and do!
This should be based
on content standards Decide what student outcomes will demonstrate that students have met the objectives.
class discussion
etc. Construct Goals and Objectives that are:
observable (the results can be "seen")
measureable (a point value, grade or score can be assigned) Plan learning experiences with your objectives and student outcomes in mind Prepare to build links between prior knowledge and new knowledge activate schema What strategies can I use? Tell a story
(vicarious experience)
Allow students to experience the lives of others Discuss an interesting graph use a graphic organizer ask questions Show a video clip What goes into a lesson body?
teacher introduces new content
students grapple with the content in meaningful ways (critical-thinking)
students work collaboratively or independently on student activities How can I introduce new content and make it comprehensible?

Some content delivery methods include:
discussion and debate Reading
there must be a goal, a purpose for the reading (and students must know what it is and be prepared to read to meet the goal)

reading must be structured

reading must be interactive, students need to have a conversation with the text

reading must not be too long (or the students will lose interest - assign meaningful chunks) Lecture
lecture must be interactive (not I talk, you listen)

students must have something to do during a lecture

incorporate questioning strategies

provide reinforcement (visuals, text, realia, art) View an artifact
or piece of art Act out a short
simulation Brainstorm American Revolution George Washington Red Coats Paul Revere One if by land,
two of by sea Valley Forge Declaration of
Independence Lexington and Concord July 4, 1776 mad at England King George III Boston Tea Party Lesson Assessment Lesson Management Projects
teacher provides explicit directions, resources and examples

teacher models the process and the product

teacher allows exploration and creativity

students analyze content and make decisions

students collaborate (each student has a unique role within the group)

students display knowledge through a product Discussion and Debate
teacher introduces a controversial issue and opens the floor for debate During the Lesson - Formative Assessment
assess learning throughout the lesson to see if students are "forming" the targeted concepts as intended End of the Lesson - Summative Assessment
assess acquisition of the "big ideas" outlined in your objectives through a summary assessment Strategies to formatively assess:
questions to check for understanding
concept maps
graphic organizers
critical-thinking questions
mid-lesson assessments
(quiz, quickwrite, games, etc.) Focus on the big ideas Inquiry
teacher poses a question or problem

students analyze multiple sources, identify authors, determine perspective, consider intent, contextualize events, corroborate evidence, evaluate conflicting claims, and critically grapple with the information

students make a claim and support it with evidence found in the sources How do I know what my students learned?

How do I know if my students met the objectives? Assessment FOR learning happens at the beginning and in the middle of a lesson
(Entry-Level and Formative Assessments) Summative Assessments
much more How do these assessments inform instruction?

As you check for understanding, if you discover that the students are getting the information easily, you can speed up the lesson or adjust to incorporate more challenging, constructive activities

If you discover that the students are struggling to understand, you can scaffold or buttress the concepts in a way that help students make better meaning of the conten Beginning of the Lesson - Entry-Level Assessment
assess students prior knowledge at the beginning of the lesson to ensure sufficient knowledge exists on which to build new concepts If you discover the students did not meet the objectives, you need to:
assess student misunderstandings

identify where in the lesson comprehension broke down

consider how the lesson can be re-structured for more successful outcomes

design activities to re-teach and re-assess the lesson Strategies for Entry-Level Assessment
anticipation/reaction guide
discussion of a graph, video, visual, story How do these assessments inform instruction?

If you discover that students have more knowledge about the topic then you expected, you can move forward more quickly, or skip parts of the lesson that are not necessary

If you discover that students do not have the necessary prior knowledge to learn the new concepts, then back up and teach the necessary information To optimize the learning environment, the teacher must establish routines and strategies that facilitate the flow of the lesson Each stage of the lesson must flow seamlessly into the next. This can be accomplished by
grouping strategies
participation strategies
timing strategies
resource management Grouping Strategies
implement methods to easily and meaningfully group students - one way to do this:

group students by colors (hand out a colored card to each student as they enter the room) - students sit in the group of their assigned color

number the colored cards 1-3 (or however many students you want in a group) - the number identifies each student's role in the group (e.g., graphic artist, scribe, poet) Participation Strategies
implement methods to ensure all students respond to questions (not just those who raise their hands) - some suggestions are:

place mini-whiteboards at each desk - have students (alone or in small groups) write down their answers and then have the class show thier boards all at the same time

place post-it notes at each desk - have students (alone or in small groups) write down their reposnes and then hang them on the wall

pose a question to the class and have the students (in pairs or small groups) write down their answer on a sheet of paper. Then they pass it to the next group who has to improve it in some way (clarify, add an example, change the sentence structure, elaborate, etc.). Have students keep passing it down until the question has been sufficiently expanded upon. Return to original owners and share as a class.

There are many ways to foster total student engagment - come up with some you like and can manage Timing Strategies
establish sufficient wait time between question and answer - let the students know you will not accept immediate answers, they will have time to think

use a timing device (hourglass, timer, watch) and set it for the desired amount of time

make the timing deivce visible so students know how much time they have to thoughtfully respond to your question

give a signal when it is time to respond A well-planned, well-paced lesson takes time and effort to design, but your students will reap the rewards! Resource Management
Have all materials, books, videos, music, handouts, etc. ready to go and in a specified place BEFORE CLASS BEGINS

Have supplies divided up as necessary (e.g., have worksheets, readings, primary source documents, etc. counted out by the number of students in each row or group so you do not have to count out papers/materials during class)

Laminate re-usable items (pictures, readings, primary sources) so they can easily be re-used the next class session Lesson Introduction Lesson Body The introduction activity should get your students ready to learn the content of the lesson Student Activities Lesson Closure Collection Communication Presentation Organization Interaction timelines graphic organizers foldables posters skits digital presentations videos cartoons storyboards jigsaw Socratic seminar journals quickwrite debate think-pair-share fishbowl townhall circle four corners carousel charts & tables card sort primary source analysis ranking scrapbooks comic strips websites flash cards simulations web quest interview Guided Practice library search archive exploration document search scavenger hunt games labs apps Once you decide on the format for delivering new content (lecture, reading, inquiry, etc.), you must decide how you will have your students "grapple" with the new content. What kinds of activites will best help you meet your lesson obejctives? Do you want students to organize the information into meaningful chunks?
Do you want students to present what they have learned?
Do you want students to interact with the new content?
Do you want students to collect additional information?
Do you want students to communicate their ideas about the new content? How do you want the students to complete the activities - collaboratively or independently? students identify the various stakeholders involved in or affected by the issue

students debate the pros and cons of the issue and implications of public and private actions Here are some suggested strategies grouped by category...

Note: several strategies could fall into more than one category. They are put into categories based on their primary purpose categorize Closure is what the teacher does at the end of the lesson to help students define what they have learned In a closure activity, the thinking should be done by the students, not the teacher

Remember...whoever is doing the thinking is doing the learning Closure is an opportunity for formative assessment and helps the teacher determine:
if additional practice or clarification is necessary
if you need to re-teach
if you can successfully move forward Some possible activities for lesson closure include: What? So what? Now What?
on a notecard, students write what they learned, explain the importance of what they learned and describe where or how they will use this information 3-2-1
3 things they learned
2 questions they still have
1 comment for the teacher whip-around
students yell out something they learned and then call on another student to respond next...this continues until all students have had a chance to respond pair-share
students each share one big idea with a partner thumbs-up/thumbs-down
the teacher poses a series of questions and students show agreement or disagreement by putting their thumbs up or down Doodle
students draw a doodle of one of the big ideas they learned in class Post Card
Students write a short postcard to a friend explaining the glorious new ideas they learned in class Name that Objective!
Students describe the objective that was met through the day's lesson journal response
have the students write a short summary of what they learned in class - or, provide a short prompt to which they must respond human timeline
hand out cards with a sequence of events or processes - have the student organize themselves in the proper order heads apart
heads together
individually, student write a few sentences about the key concepts they learned in the lesson
then in pairs or small groups, they expand upon and refine what they have learned Where are we going?
students predict what the topic of the next lesson will be... You Complete Me...
in pairs or groups, one student starts a sentence and another student finishes it. Descriptions of the following strategies can be accessed at:

https://sites.google.com/a/fullerton.edu/csuf-social-studies/strategies Now go forth and do good work!! The purpose of an assessment determines when it takes place during a lesson (beginning, during or end)

Assessment FOR Learning
happens at a checkpoint
Assessment OF Learning
happens at an endpoint What do I already know about how the heart works? A lesson is like a road trip

You need to make several checks (assessments) along the way to ensure you are on the right path. Notice that these are all COMMUNICATION strategies? These assessments are checkpoints that inform the teacher of student
knowledge and progress. The
teacher uses this information
to make adjustments to the lesson Notice that these are COMMUNICATION, INTERACTION, and ORGANIZATION strategies? Notice that these are PRESENTATION and COMMUNICATION strategies?

You need a rubric or scoring guide with specific criteria (based on big ideas and objectives) on which the project will be evaluated

You need to set a minimum point value or rating to determine if students met the standard of proficiency How do these assessments let me know if students have met the objectives? Example of an Entry-Level Assessment
from the Unit: Journey to China This assessment allows students to reveal what they know about the characteristics of an effective leader and lets them express their opinion on what type of leader would be best Example of Formative Assessment
from the unit: Journey to China This assessment encourages to students to organize and display what they have learned so far in a particular lesson - teachers check for progress
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