What is 1 way you plan to "start over" or "deviate" in your assessment strategies this new year?

Hey @informed_members @Certified_Educators !

Yesterday we had an awesome, X-Men themed #formativechat about making 2019 a great year for assessment and learning! We’d love to continue the discussion here and hear your thoughts on Q1 :point_down:

Shout out to our guest host: Lᴀᴜʀᴀ Sᴛᴇɪɴʙʀɪɴᴋ

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I plan to offer ‘pretests’ so students can ‘test out’ of a concept. Those who show at least 70% mastery will be given an alternate task during ‘normal’ instruction. After instruction, my ‘masters’ will be peer tutors to aide fellow classmates. I gave my first pretest and there are about 10 kids (in a class of 31) who mastered the pretest. I plan to implement my plan tomorrow. Fingers crossed that all goes well.


That’s so exciting! What types of alternative tasks will you have them doing?

I think that I am moving away from the scantron type of assessment as much as I can. Formatives with ‘show your work’ or ‘short answer’ as well as EdPuzzle links with listening activities meet students where many are- enjoying the use of technology! I look forward to hearing @tricia.mintner inter and what activities she is going to use. I would love to have a classroom where students can work at their own pace- which includes more personalized assessments- but I really don’t know how to make that work or how to make it work with a district pacing calendar.

I have started a “take a stand” Tuesday and “Defend and discuss” Thursday to allow students to share their opinions on a new topic each week. They have to be able to think on their feet, respond in a clear concise way, be opening to listening to others’ opinions, and support their views with reasons/examples. This is a more enjoyable way for me to assess their ability to make a claim and try to persuade others. They will utilize Formative to share with me their opinions about these two days events and to share possible new topics and support for why we should discuss them.

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Update: Turns out the idea was good… but I had too many peer tutors for that particular class for my ‘stroll around and help’ plan. They tended to be more distracting than helpful. I think it would have been better if I had assigned each peer tutor a specific group of 2-3 kids to check in on. In later classes, I didn’t have ‘masters’ on pretests, but I did have students who showed proficiency on learning checks. I grouped them 1-1 and that worked really well in my smaller classes.

First of all, Susan, I break down each learning concept into smaller mini-formatives that focus on a particular skill or difficulty level, that build up to the level expected on the test. The idea is for me to catch students’ errors ahead of time. I’ve expanded my formatives by including a video (many times EDpuzzle) videos at the top of each mini-GoFo. In some cases, I have added audio so my ELL and SE students can listen to directions & explanations for examples I’ve provided. We have common assessments at my school, which is about half multiple choice and half constructed response. We purposely set up the MC questions to target ‘normal errors’ in those problems so that we have some ‘data’ when the test if completed. (Of course, hopefully, my mini-GoFos have already ‘caught and fixed’ those errors prior to the test.)

At the end of my mini-GoFos there’s always a short reflection (that doesn’t show up as auto-graded). Sometimes, it’s a ‘how do you feel about these types of problems’ prompt while others are ‘explain the steps you used to solve…’. My favorite prompts are a ‘Select All the types of errors you made on this GoFo.’ One time, I pulled those responses up for the class and hid the names. I had students walk along an imaginary scoring line in the classroom to ‘grade’ the prompt. I called on students to support their grade. The kids liked it and I got some valuable feedback into how the students think and what they believe is important in an answer.

I try to find math games online to help with alternative forms of assessments as well. I just search for the topic and ‘online games’ or ‘interactive’ and embed them into GoFo. Students then take a screenshot of their final score page and upload it into a Show your Work page. I also like MangaHigh, but the free version offers a limited selection of activities.

Sometimes I use ‘Gallery Walks’ (problems/notes posted around the room.) If the notes are fairly simple, but a long process, I use the GW for the notes. I also use the GW for students to see word problems one which they place post-it notes for equations, questions, errors, etc. Then we discuss what they found and they use this info when performing similar problems on their own.

I’ve found some neat GW type activities (like Clue) where students work the problem and the answer leads them to a clue/directs them to the next problem.


Have you heard of learning playlists before? I know teachers who use them in class to help students work through a lesson and support different paces of learning. Here’s a great article about them and here’s a couple examples from @appelj:

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That is an interesting idea. How did it work out?

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@Darleen_Perez, it didn’t go as well as planned for the big group. Our unit test is Monday. Upon completion students will be able to pretest out of any of the 4 targets for the next unit. Hopefully, my ‘Masters’ will be a little more diverse in their skills and I’ll be able to set up peer instruction better.

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I want to add files of me reading the questions using Pipespeak. That way any student can listen to the question, regardless of the reason.