Saturday, August 13, 2016

Classroom Assessment Chapter 12

    LAST CHAPTER

     To help us work towards our school goal of improving our understanding and practice of assessment, my principal has provided our staff with a copy of Classroom Assessment for Student Learning: Doing it Right - Using it Wellby Jan Chappuis, Rick Stiggins, Steve Chappuis, and Judith Arter. As I make my way through the book, I will be summarizing my learning as a means of organizing my thoughts and getting clarification on particular ideas.


Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Cover. (Accessed 2016). Uploaded to Amazon; Pearson Education. Available online at: https://www.amazon.ca/Classroom-Assessment-Student-Learning-Doing/dp/0132685884

Chapter 12 - Conferences About & With Students

Kinds of Conferences
Chappius, et al. (2012). Figure 12.2 Kinds of ConferencesClassroom Assessment for Student Learning, pg 387.
Feedback Conferences

- make sure students know what learning targets will be discussed before the meeting
- you can ask students to reflect on strengths/weaknesses before the meeting
- Keys to Success
     - focus on the intended learning (identify strengths & help guide improvement)
     - offer feedback
     - only offer feedback if the student demonstrates at least partial understanding
      - do not do all the work for the student
     - limit corrective info to the amount a student can act on at one time

Goal-Setting Conferences

- can refer to one piece of work or a collection of evidence
- not necessary for every student
- Keys to Success
     - clarify the learning target
     - clarify the students' current status
     - state the target as a goal
     - make a plan
           - what action will they take
           - what assistance do they need? from who?
           - what is the time frame?
           - collect before and after examples
           - ensure student ownership; don't set the goals for them

Progress Conferences

- typical parent-teacher night conferences
- can focus on growth over time or on a student's current achievement status
* personal preference is for student AND parent/guardian present 
- meeting agenda
     - explain learning targets
     - identify strengths, help guide improvement
     - provide evidence/exemplars of student work
     - end positive
* provide conference evaluation forms, follow-up as needed

_____________________________________________
I WANT TO KNOW:

How often do you hold formal conferences with parents?

Please leave your thoughts below :)

Classroom Assessment Chapter 11

     To help us work towards our school goal of improving our understanding and practice of assessment, my principal has provided our staff with a copy of Classroom Assessment for Student Learning: Doing it Right - Using it Wellby Jan Chappuis, Rick Stiggins, Steve Chappuis, and Judith Arter. As I make my way through the book, I will be summarizing my learning as a means of organizing my thoughts and getting clarification on particular ideas.


Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Cover. (Accessed 2016). Uploaded to Amazon; Pearson Education. Available online at: https://www.amazon.ca/Classroom-Assessment-Student-Learning-Doing/dp/0132685884

Chapter 11 - Portfolio Assessment

* a collection of artefacts put together to tell a story

Types of Portfolios
Chappius, et al. (2012). Figure 11.3 Kinds of PortfoliosClassroom Assessment for Student Learning, pg 368.

How to Select Artefacts
Chappius, et al. (2012). Figure 11.4 Who Decides? Classroom Assessment for Student Learning, pg 371.
Keys for Successful Use

1 ) Ensure Accuracy of Evidence
- "each entry is only as good as the assignment given"
- verify with the student that the artefact is showing what you both want it to show

2 ) Keep Track of the Evidence
- find a system that fits your personal organization style
     a ) how will you store the artefacts?
          - digitally (photos of projects, computer files) or hard copies
     b ) how will you organize it?
          - hanging files, binders, notebooks
     c ) how will portfolios be stored?
          - flash drives, filing cabinets, shelving
     d ) schedule updating time
          - don't leave it for a rush before parent-teacher time

3 ) Invest the Time Up Front
- teach students about portfolios 
     - why we do it
     - how do you set one up
- model how to complete meaningful reflections
- do first submissions together so you can pass off responsibility later

4 ) Make the Experience Safe
- students can feel stressed by publicly sharing

_____________________________________________
I WANT TO KNOW:

I don't use formal portfolios in our classroom; the closest thing would be collecting samples of work to showcase to parents right before parent teacher meetings (would be classified as a "celebration" portfolio).

Do you use portfolios?
If so, what kind?

Please leave your thoughts below :)

Classroom Assessment Chapter 10

     To help us work towards our school goal of improving our understanding and practice of assessment, my principal has provided our staff with a copy of Classroom Assessment for Student Learning: Doing it Right - Using it Wellby Jan Chappuis, Rick Stiggins, Steve Chappuis, and Judith Arter. As I make my way through the book, I will be summarizing my learning as a means of organizing my thoughts and getting clarification on particular ideas.


Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Cover. (Accessed 2016). Uploaded to Amazon; Pearson Education. Available online at: https://www.amazon.ca/Classroom-Assessment-Student-Learning-Doing/dp/0132685884

Chapter 10 -  Converting Summative Info into Grades

1 ) Use Grades to Communicate, Not to Motivate
- grades should never be used to manipulative behaviour (punish or motivate)
- no solid evidence grade manipulation works (including competitions)
* this is why learning behaviours are assessed separately

2 ) Report Achievement & Other Factors Separately
- rubrics/checklists should not score effort
     (ex) neatness, "pretty" colourful; stick to learning targets only
- find other ways to communicate work completion, absence, cheating, etc

3 ) Reflect Only Current Level of Achievement in the Academic Grade
- averaging new with the old hinders those with slow starts

Summarizing Info

- verify accuracy
- don't include outdated or non-applicable information
- convert all entries to the same scale
- raw scores or %
- weight as needed
- combine information thoughtfully
- recommend using the median rather than the mean
     - I really like this idea; it made me think of this image
     - how does averaging grades affect students? is it is the most accurate way to communicate their level of understanding

Is it time we stopped averaging grades? (2015). Uploaded by Justin Tarte. Available online at: http://www.justintarte.com/2015/12/is-it-time-we-stop-averaging-grades.html

* you shouldnt get grades from a rubric by adding up all scores, dividing by a total, and averaging
     - this skews communication of understanding because levels on a rubric don't necessarily translate into matching a percentage

Accurate, Fair, & Defensible Report Card Grades

1 ) Start with learning targets
- list all of the learning targets you will assess
2 ) Make an assessment plan
- what will be formative?
- what will be summative?
3 ) Create, choose, & modify assessment as class unfolds
4) Record info from assessments
- use the raw score
5 ) Summarize achievement info into one score
- weight as appropriate
6 ) Translate into appropriate format for the report card

_____________________________________________
I WANT TO KNOW:

What are your thoughts on averaging grades?
Our school policy is to average grades and our grade book computer program automatically averages grades for us as well.

Please leave your thoughts below :)

Sunday, August 07, 2016

Classroom Tech Tools

     There are still EIGHT days left until I can get back into my classroom and begin setting up for the new year! *insert stressed expression here* In a perfect world I would have loved to have access through the whole summer so I could work at it casually since I am beginning from the ground up after returning from maternity leave.

     In my first year I had access in the middle of July which worked perfectly; I was set-up and ready to go a week before school actually started and I could relax before the craziness began.

     In my second year I didn't really change much in my room so a lot of my content prep was simply done at home and I spent about a week cleaning and organizing for the year.

     This year the custodians are not only doing the floors in my room but also repainting the walls and installing new white boards... which is awesome because everything will be new and fresh but it also sucks because now I have to wait forever before I can do any work in the room.

     Jaxson is still nursing regularly as well so when I do gain access to my room I plan to do so after he goes to bed in the evening (at 7pm) so that I can work for longer stretches than if I were to attempt to take him with me during the day; I foresee some late nights in my future!

     In the meantime, I have been doing as much work from home as I can think of, including:
- prepping course content, updating course outlines, etc
- prepping furniture for my flexible seating options (more info on that in the future!)
- creating supply labels
- revamping classroom posters
- making endless to-do lists

     I have also been getting some of our classroom tech tools updated and organized for the year. This includes:

CLASSROOM WEBSITE

ste rose school, kirsten thompson, Mrs. Thompson ste rose, turtle river school division, manitoba tech teachers, manitoba classroom websites, manitoba teacher blogs

     Our website's home page got a facelift for the fall and I've been updating our "students", "parents/guardians" and "about Mrs T" pages to reflect new information for the 2016/17 school year. Our website is primarily a static source of information but it does house all of the links for any videos, websites, online labs, notes that I share during the year.

     You can check it out at: http://thompsonclassroom.weebly.com/

REMIND ACCOUNTS
ste rose school, kirsten thompson, Mrs. Thompson ste rose, turtle river school division, manitoba tech teachers, manitoba classroom websites, manitoba teacher blogs

     I use Remind in all of my classes to communicate with students and parents/guardians. Depending on the grade level and subject area our correspondence includes:
- general school reminders
- prompts on what supplies are needed in class for a specific day
- reminders about upcoming assignments/tests
- classroom instructions

     I created new accounts for each of my classes for the upcoming school year and made posters on how to sign-up for the service using screenshots from the Remind website and clip art from Creative Commons. These posters will be included in an interactive "Connect With Us" bulletin board outside my classroom but the sign-up information is also included through our classroom website, course outlines, and emailed out to parents. 

CANADIAN HISTORY BLOG

ste rose school, kirsten thompson, Mrs. Thompson ste rose, turtle river school division, manitoba tech teachers, manitoba classroom websites, manitoba teacher blogs

     Back in November I shared that I was going to be using blogging in my Grade 11 Canadian History class. Although I have blogged with my students in previous years this year our blog is going to be much more purposeful, will serve as a form of summative assessment, and be completed cross-curricularly with their English teacher. I have set-up the basic framework for the blog already and am slowly adding exemplars of the various blogging prompts I will be asking for throughout the course.

     You can check it out at: https://canadianhistorytoldbyus.blogspot.ca/


CONNECT WITH US POSTERS

     
ste rose school, kirsten thompson, Mrs. Thompson ste rose, turtle river school division, manitoba tech teachers, manitoba classroom websites, manitoba teacher blogs

     In addition to our classroom website and blog (both shared above) I also maintain a classroom YouTube channel that features videos created by students as well as comprehensive playlists of videos shared in various classes. As a way to maintain all of these resources I have an interactive "Connect With Us" display (mentioned previously) that features:
- the tech tool
- applicable links
- a QR code that can be scanned and take you directly to the resource

     The image above is the set-up I had created in previous years. I now have a large bulletin board outside my classroom where I will relocate this information to. I've updated the posters to include our new Canadian History blog.

     The posters were made using clip art from Creative Commons and QR Stuff.

Friday, August 05, 2016

Classroom Assessment Chapter 9

     To help us work towards our school goal of improving our understanding and practice of assessment, my principal has provided our staff with a copy of Classroom Assessment for Student Learning: Doing it Right - Using it Wellby Jan Chappuis, Rick Stiggins, Steve Chappuis, and Judith Arter. As I make my way through the book, I will be summarizing my learning as a means of organizing my thoughts and getting clarification on particular ideas.


Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Cover. (Accessed 2016). Uploaded to Amazon; Pearson Education. Available online at: https://www.amazon.ca/Classroom-Assessment-Student-Learning-Doing/dp/0132685884

Chapter 9 - Record Keeping

- everything is target-based so tracking should be too

- what does a 9/10 on "Worksheet #3" actually tell you in your grade book?
     - you should have to organized to show target mastery

- have students track their understanding so they know where they stand before during a summative assessment

Record Keeping Guidelines

1 ) Organize Entries by Learning Target
- effective use of labels
- easy to report on specific outcomes
- quickly see strengths/challenges

2 ) Track Info About Work Habits & Social Skills Separately
* we do this in the "learning behaviours" section of the provincial report cards
- extra credit work
     - students shouldn't be given extra points for completion (effort points)
     - if students need more formative practice & then want another shot to communicate understanding then thats different
- missing/late work and cheating
     - zeros do not demonstrate learning; find other punitive measures

3 ) Record Info by Raw Score
- provide info regarding sample size
(ex) 8/32

_____________________________________________
I WANT TO KNOW:

This chapter was much longer but a lot of the information suggested different record keeping options; since our school uses a mandatory online grading system the information wasn't applicable to me.

What do you use to organize your records?
Our schools uses the program Maplewood.

Please leave your thoughts below :)

Classroom Assessment Chapter 8

     To help us work towards our school goal of improving our understanding and practice of assessment, my principal has provided our staff with a copy of Classroom Assessment for Student Learning: Doing it Right - Using it Wellby Jan Chappuis, Rick Stiggins, Steve Chappuis, and Judith Arter. As I make my way through the book, I will be summarizing my learning as a means of organizing my thoughts and getting clarification on particular ideas.


Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Cover. (Accessed 2016). Uploaded to Amazon; Pearson Education. Available online at: https://www.amazon.ca/Classroom-Assessment-Student-Learning-Doing/dp/0132685884

Chapter 8 - Personal Communication

Chappius, et al. (2012). Figure 8.2 Personal Communication OptionsClassroom Assessment for Student Learning, pg 266.

* individual students' personalities, comfort level, language background, etc can influence the effectiveness of this assessment option

Sampling - Gathering Enough Evidence

- how complex/broad is the learning target?
- is the purpose of the assessment formative or summative?
- there are no rules on how many questions to ask; use your professional judgement

Sampling - Hearing from Students

- it is not often that students will participate equally in a group setting
- call on all students (not just those who raise their hand), use clickers, personal whiteboards, etc

Wait Time

- allow students time to think before demanding answers
- reflection allows for more engagement

Instructional Q's & A's

- commonly used during lessons; formative purpose
- be sure to plan questions ahead of time
- be specific if looking for reasoning targets
- encourage more detail, ask for elaboration, build off of other responses
     - just keep the conversation flowing!
- Questions for learning
     1 ) ask Qs specifically about key points of the target
     2 ) students should respond to each other
     3 ) model types of responses for students (speculate, reflect, admit you don't know)
     4 ) show how different verbs get different answers
* this is not recommended for summative assessment

Class Discussions

- structured conversations; formative or summative purpose
- be sure to plan questions ahead of time
- develop quality checklists or rubrics (see Ch. 7)
- don't rely on your memory; make sure you are recording student responses
- Discussions for learning
     * use the 7 strategies for formative assessment

Conferences & Interviews

- often used informally while circulating around the room; formative
- don't need to be used with every students, just those we need more evidence from; use your professional judgement
- be sure to plan questions ahead of time
- avoid "yes & no" questions
- have samples available to clarify
- give students time to prepare
- provide time to review what was shared before concluding the discussion

Oral Exams

- use low level vocabulary
- use 1 set of questions with all students
- develop quality checklists or rubrics
- record and reassess if needed

Journals & Logs
Chappius, et al. (2012). Figure 8.4 Written Forms of Personal CommunicationClassroom Assessment for Student Learning, pg 282.



Biases & Problems

- not enough time
- language barriers
- teacher's personal filters/stereotypes
- unclear task
- trying to remember student responses without written records

_____________________________________________
I WANT TO KNOW:

How do you build in personal communication assessment into your classroom?

I often arrange enters or stations for my students to circulate through during a class period where one stop is a conference with me; I find it very beneficial!

Please leave your thoughts below :)




Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Classroom Assessment Chapter 7

     To help us work towards our school goal of improving our understanding and practice of assessment, my principal has provided our staff with a copy of Classroom Assessment for Student Learning: Doing it Right - Using it Wellby Jan Chappuis, Rick Stiggins, Steve Chappuis, and Judith Arter. As I make my way through the book, I will be summarizing my learning as a means of organizing my thoughts and getting clarification on particular ideas.


Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Cover. (Accessed 2016). Uploaded to Amazon; Pearson Education. Available online at: https://www.amazon.ca/Classroom-Assessment-Student-Learning-Doing/dp/0132685884

Chapter 7 - Performance Assessment

* see Chapter 4 for the most appropriate times to use selected response assessments

* before you begin, use the assessment development cycle and make a blueprint (Ch. 4)

* remember to not confuse activities with learning targets!

Determine Sample Size with Performance Assessment

1 ) Complexity of the Target
- the more complex, the more evidence required
(ex) reading rate = less complex, reading fluency = more complex

2 ) Decision the Evidence will Inform
- for learning requires low level of evidence

3 ) Consistency of Performance
- use professional judgement
- gather more evidence for students with high fluctuations
     - make sure any applicable biases are addressed first

4 ) Proximity to the Cutoff Mark
- gather more evidence for those students who fall close to grade-divides 
(ex) students who are between a 3-4 on the provincial report cards

Selecting, Revising, or Developing the Task

1 ) The Content
- what learning target is demonstrated?

2 ) Target Alignment
- content validity
- only assess aspects of the learning target; NOT things like neatness

3 ) Authenticity
- realistic context as close to real-life as practical

4 ) Choice
- use cautiously as choices need to fit the target, not vary in difficulty & ensure validity

5 ) Level of Scaffolding
- point the way to success without doing the thinking for the students

6 ) Interference
- make sure aspects of the task do not interfere with achieving the actual learning target
(ex) too high of reading level in the instructions, situations requiring specific cultural/linguistic backgrounds

Structure of the Task

- be as specific as possible and ensure students know: 
     - what knowledge they need (the target)
     - what they need to accomplish
     - what they are creating
     - what materials they need
     - how much time they have
     - what conditions need to be met
     - what help is allowed
     - what scoring criteria will be used

Chappius, et al. (2012). Figure 7.8 Characteristics of a Good Rubric. Classroom Assessment for Student Learning, pg 231.
* make sure scoring rubrics only include info on the qualities of the task; NOT directional instructions like word limits

Process for Developing Rubrics

1 ) Establish a Knowledge Base
- work with those knowledgeable in the area
- determine what quality looks like
- review existing rubrics for inspiration

2 ) Gather Samples of Student Performances/Rubrics
- familiarize yourself with a range of quality 
- student work, provincial examples, peer examples, self created, hard copy, video, audio
- at least 20 pieces

3 ) Sort Work by Level of Quality
- sort into weak, medium & strong
- write specific descriptions as to why its sorted that way
- relate descriptions back to learning target

4 ) Cluster Descriptions by Trait
- combine similar descriptions
- omit repeats
- separate those that cannot be linked

5 ) Identify Samples that Illustrate Each Level
- will be used as models/examples
- which are strong? weak? start with the extremes
- have multiple examples for each level
- try to include those that identify common misconceptions

6 ) Test & Revise as Needed

_____________________________________________
I WANT TO KNOW:

I found this chapter very confusing as it seemed to focus more on rubrics (in general) than anything else....

Please leave your thoughts below :)