Assessment Philosophy

Assessment Philosophy:
What is important about assessment and Best practices

Assessment FOR Learning:

I think it is important to use strategies to create a classroom where learning is the focus. These strategies include involving the students in setting and using criteria, engaging students in self-assessment, increase the sources of specific and descriptive feedback, and have students collect and present evidence of learning.

Involving Students in Setting and Using Criteria:

The teacher can involve the students in setting criteria for assignments, journals, and any other projects. This will allow the teacher to learn more about what the students know and students will be able to understand what is important white they learn. This will also keep the students engaged and involved by building ownership. This also allows for teachers to identify the needs of the group and change the lesson if needed.

Engage Students in Self-Assessment:

Self-assessments are a good way to help students process, learn and stay focussed on learning. It also teachers students to self-monitor  and develop skills as an independent learner. With self-assessment, the teacher is also able to find out what students are thinking and what their understanding is of the material being taught and adjust their lesson if needed.

A couple of examples would include engaging students in doing reflective journals and checklists. The use of reflective journals will allow students to think and write about what they have learned, list any questions about the topic they may have, or make connections between the topic and their own lives. They are also able to reflect about their own learning in relation to unit goals or outcomes.

Increase the Sources of Specific and Descriptive Feedback:

The teacher can provide feedback to the students by involving the students in setting criterias so they can give themselves feedback in relation to the criteria as they are working and learning. The teacher can also provide feedback by providing models and samples of work (for the assignments and poster project) so the students can analyze the key attributes of what success looks like, demonstrate what quality looks like, and what the expectations are of the project so students can be successful in doing the assignment/ project.

Have Students Collect and Present Evidence of Learning:

The teacher can ask the students to collect, reflect, organize and present evidence of learning throughout the unit. These can include reflective journals, worksheets, demonstrations of learning, or any other form of assignments that the students are proud of. These collection of evidences show the students progress, understanding, and learning. The students can also present these collection of evidences to their parents or school community by taking it home, presenting it during student-parent conferences, or displaying it in the school hallways.

Strategies that I would use to support learning and guide instruction:

Instruction is changing as we involve students in the classroom assessment. Teaching students how to learn as well as teaching them what they need to know to be able to be successful. In order to show what success looks like, a best practice is to keep a variety of samples while encouraging originality. In this unit, the teacher can provide different samples of posters for the summative assessment project. The students can analyze the key attributes of what success looks like, demonstrate what quality looks like, and what the expectations are of the project so students can be successful in doing the assignment/ project.

Assessment expectations should be established before the unit or lesson is taught, while making room for adaptations. Together with the teacher, the students can create the rubric and criteria for assignments and projects such as the poster project. The criteria and expectations for the assignment will be clear and the students will understand what the end goal is which will keep them on task. The criteria should also be  posted in the classroom and can be continuously revisited.

With having the students involved in creating the rubric and criteria, it will help students take control of their own learning, allow students to be Involved in their own learning, it also motivates them to understand their learning and helps them recognize what they need to do. 

How I would communicate to the student and to the parents about the learning:

The teacher can engage in a variety of ways to communicate to the students and to the parents about the learning that is happening in the classroom. Communication methods would include sending student generated newsletters, conducting self-assessments, demonstrations of learning, and reporting through student-parents conferences and student-parent-teacher conferences.

Student Generated Newsletters:

Student generated newsletters provide parents with information about the classroom program as well as student learning. It also helps to communicate about the daily learning that takes place in the classroom. The students can be involved by writing messages in the newsletters, taking photos of activities, discussions, experiments, or everyday moments, or share their learning. The teacher will also include current projects the students are engaged in, learning goals and outcomes, and announcements such as upcoming events or activities.

Self-Assessments:

Teachers can ask the students to think about and reflect on their work (using their reflective journals). This is a valuable way for students to communicate to their parents about their learning. These self-assessments (journals, student work, photos of students at work, etc.) show the students progress, understanding, and learning. The students can also present these collection of evidences to their parents or school community by taking it home, presenting it during student-parent conferences, or displaying it in the school hallways.

Demonstrations of Learning:

This is an effective way for students to show parents what they have learned and it can take place at home, school or online. The students can take home work that they have completed in class, materials for science experiments or books about light to share with their family. The students can also invite their family for a Science Night at the school where the students will conduct experiments and teach their parents about what they’ve learned.

Student-Parent Conferences:

This will be a  time for students to share their learning with their parents. The teachers help prepare students to conduct student-parent conferences. The students invite their family members a science night where they can participate in a number of learning centres. At the centres, parents can participate in an activity that the students have been currently doing in class (such as light experiments, reading books about light sources, etc.) and look through the student’s portfolio. The teacher can also post signs explaining each activity along with the outcome and indicator so parents are aware of what their child is learning. At the end of the conference, the student and parent can set goals for future learning.