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How Can We Make Assessments Meaningful?

How Can We Make Assessments Meaningful?
I think meaningful assessments can come in many shapes and sizes. In fact, to be thoroughly engaging and to draw the best work out of the students, assessments should come in different formats. Thankfully, with the Common Core standards exemplifying the 4Cs -- Creativity and Critical Thinking (through performance-based assessments), Collaboration, and Communication (through the use of interdisciplinary writing) -- we are looking at a more fluid future in testing formats. As long as the format itself is aligned with real-world skills, a meaningful assessment does not need to be lockstep with a particular structure any more. When I think about my own definition of a "meaningful assessment," I think the test must meet certain requirements. The assessment must have value other than "because it's on the test." Criteria for a Meaningful Classroom Assessment To address these requirements, I ask myself the following guided questions: Does the assessment involve project-based learning?

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/making-assessments-meaningful-heather-wolpert-gawron

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Reading. Writing. Thinking. Sharing. Do you teach non-fiction text structures? Are your students familiar with the five most common text structures for non-fiction? In welcoming the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS), schools across the country are making big changes to their curriculum and instruction (K-12). The CCSS were designed with the end-goal of preparing all students for college and career success. The standards provide an academic road map for each grade-level and define expectations for higher levels of student achievement.

Diving Into Project-based Learning: Designing the Rubric - Perhaps the most difficult aspect of project-based learning for me was figuring out how I was going to assess it. I’m sure some teachers love assessing and marking student work, but honestly, I’m uncomfortable with most grading and scoring. I appreciate feedback and I don’t mind giving feedback, but I hate reducing it to a letter, number, or score. To me, it undervalues the learning. Collections In this section of the site we bring you curated collections of images, books, audio and film, shining a light on curiosities and wonders from a wide range of online archives. With a leaning toward the surprising, the strange, and the beautiful, we hope to provide an ever-growing cabinet of curiosities for the digital age, a kind of hyperlinked Wunderkammer – an archive of materials which truly celebrates the breadth and variety of our shared cultural commons and the minds that have made it. Some of our most popular posts include visions of the future from late 19th century France, a dictionary of Victorian slang and a film showing the very talented “hand-farting” farmer of Michigan. With each post including links back to the original source we encourage you to explore these wonderful online sources for yourself.

Take Three! 55 Digital Tools and Apps for Formative Assessment Success There is no shortage of strategies, techniques, and tools available to teachers who use formative assessment in their classrooms. It’s been over a year since we published our blog on digital tools and apps for formative assessment success and some of them we listed are no longer around. The good news is that there are new tools and apps that are available today that can help facilitate evidence of student learning. Here is an updated version of our list of digital tools and apps for formative assessment success. Come See How To Buncee: Learn How To Create Holiday Ecards Yo buncee fam: It’s time for the holiday edition of “Come See How To Buncee!” On November 20th from 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm EST, the buncee team will be hosting a FREE webinar showing you how to create the best holiday ecards. With personalized photos, embeded videos, songs, and original audio recordings you can create a digital message that your family, friends, and Santa will love!

Home of free rubric tools: RCampus Welcome to iRubric iRubric is a comprehensive rubric development, assessment, and sharing tool. Designed from the ground up, iRubric supports a variety of applications in an easy-to-use package. Best of all, iRubric is free to individual faculty and students. iRubric School-Edition empowers schools with an easy-to-use system for monitoring student learning outcomes and aligning with standards. aheadofhistory: Get students talking with a peer assessment fortune teller After several requests on Twitter, I'm pleased to publish a high quality, printable version of my peer assessment fortune teller here. I would use it as an engaging way of encouraging students to carry out oral peer assessment. The prompts on the fortune teller also help to structure and prompt the feedback which weaker students give to their partners.  Labels: afl, assessment, engagement, formative, learning, teaching

Resources for Assessment in Project-Based Learning Project-based learning (PBL) demands excellent assessment practices to ensure that all learners are supported in the learning process. With good assessment practices, PBL can create a culture of excellence for all students and ensure deeper learning for all. We’ve compiled some of the best resources from Edutopia and the web to support your use of assessment in PBL, including information about strategies, advice on how to address the demands of standardized tests, and summaries of the research. PBL Assessment Foundations 10 Tips for Assessing Project-Based Learning (Edutopia, 2011) This comprehensive guide from Edutopia goes over many best practices for assessment, including authentic products, good feedback, formative assessment, and digital tools. Teachers can use this as a professional learning tool and primer for PBL Assessment.

Here Is A New Simple Tool to Create Educational Rubrics October 3, 2015 Quick Rubric is a new tool from the folks in Photos for Class. This is a new web based application that allows you to easily set up criterion-referenced rubrics to score your students performances and assignments. You can use Quick Rubric to create rubrics to help you assess things such as oral presentations, writing projects, reading comprehension, storytelling and many more. Some Excellent Rubric Generators for Teachers July 3, 2016 A few days ago we published here in EdTech and mLearning a collection of some interesting web tools teachers can use to create educational rubrics. Today, we are adding this wonderful resource from Teachnology which is basically a huge selection of pre-made rubrics and rubric generators that can be integrated into different subject areas. As we have argued elsewhere, rubrics are helpful for both teachers and students: teachers can use them when designing lesson plans and grading assignments; students can use them to make sure they meet the learning expectations and requirements of an assignment or project work.

5 Excellent Rubric Making Tools for Teachers June 18, 2016 Rubrics are scoring charts used to assess and evaluate a particular learning or teaching activity. As is explained in this guide, rubrics are helpful for both teachers and students: teachers can use them when designing lesson plans and grading assignments; students can use them to make sure they meet the learning expectations and requirements of an assignment or project work. Rubric making should not be a complicated task, it should only speak to the core requirements of a given task while channeling focus to the learning outcomes. 20 Simple Assessment Strategies You Can Use Every Day 20 Simple Assessment Strategies You Can Use Every Day by Saga Briggs The ultimate goal of teaching is understanding.

Do No Harm: Flexible and Smart Grading Practices My Edutopia post When Grading Harms Student Learning generated a lot of buzz. Grading is an emotional subject, with strong-held opinions and ideas. I was really excited to see discussion on all sides of the issue. The best feedback for me was that, while many readers agreed with parts of the premise, I hadn't been specific on support strategies. Thank you for that feedback -- it was specific, actionable, and created the need and excitement for a follow-up post. While there are many tools out there that help address concerns around redoes, zeroes, not grading homework, and more, here are some of my favorites:

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