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Assessing 21st Century Skills

Assessing 21st Century Skills
Recently, one of the teachers who is participating in our district’s 21st Century Learning grant project came to talk with me about assessing 21 century skills – one of the expectations for teachers in this project. Her observation was that students frequently practice the skills when engaged in research or project based learning. The thing she was struggling, with, though, was how to “grade it.” Assessing skills like collaboration, information literacy, creativity, self-direction, and critical thinking seems like a difficult task–when you think of assessment as “grading.” So to effectively assess skills and habits of mind –we must design a performance task for the students. One of the most difficult tasks of designing an effective formative assessment tool for 21st century skills is deciding what criteria should be included. These items become the criteria upon which a rubric or checklist can be built.

Education Week Teacher Professional Development Sourcebook: Writing Re-Launched: Teaching with Digital Tools Published Online: April 4, 2011 Published in Print: April 4, 2011, as Writing Re-Launched: Teaching with Digital Tools Second grader Daisy Mora Gomez uses an iPad application called "Puppet Pals" to work on her pre-writing skills. —Manny Crisotomo Innovative language arts teachers find that adapting writing instruction to technology can enhance engagement without sacrificing the fundamentals. The nature of writing has shifted in recent years. So why does writing in school still so often involve a pen, paper, and a hardbound print dictionary? “Schools are in catch-up mode,” says Elyse Eidman-Aadahl, the director of national programs and site development for the National Writing Project, a federally funded program that provides professional development in writing instruction. There are plenty of reasons for teaching writing without a technology component, including lack of resources, lack of training, and the pressures of testing. —Manny Crisostomo Writing as Collaboration Writing to Be Read

The Language of Learning From HookED Wiki Developing a common language of the learning process We identified the language of learning most commonly used in New Zealand schools by analysing the task descriptors used in Level One NCEA papers. The most commonly occurring terms in the language of learning were developed into ten visual maps coded against student learning outcomes to help students understand the process of (or how to) define, describe, sequence, classify, compare and contrast, causal explanation, part whole analysis, analogy, generalise, predict and evaluate. These Hooked on Thinking visual maps help make the language of learning visible to students whether they are five years old or eighteen years old. The maps are introduced individually but are intended to be used fluently in a sequence of learning experiences designed to unpack an NZC Achievement Objective as shown below. HOT Visual Maps Figure X HOT Compare and contrast Map HOT SOLO Coded Self Assessment Rubrics Media type="custom" key="5024685"

Cycles of Learning Strategies to enhance student self-assessment Reflection activities Teachers often use proformae to encourage students to reflect on their learning experience. While these are convenient and provide a record of student thinking, they can become an activity devoid of any real thinking. View Sample reflective questions and prompts (doc,30kb) for younger students and Designing reflective prompts (doc,33kb) for older students. Student-led and three-way conferences Student-led conferences in which students present their learning to their teacher and parents are an opportunity for students to formally reflect on the learning that has taken place over a period of time. Usually the evidence they produce is in the form of a portfolio, which students have prepared according to provided guidelines. The student, with teacher guidance, is the one who selects the work. The teacher makes sure the students understand the purpose of the portfolio - that is, that: Use of rubrics Rubrics are a valuable tool for self-assessment. Use of graphic organisers

Getting It Wrong: Surprising Tips on How to Learn For years, many educators have championed “errorless learning," advising teachers (and students) to create study conditions that do not permit errors. For example, a classroom teacher might drill students repeatedly on the same multiplication problem, with very little delay between the first and second presentations of the problem, ensuring that the student gets the answer correct each time. The idea embedded in this approach is that if students make errors, they will learn the errors and be prevented (or slowed) in learning the correct information. But research by Nate Kornell, Matthew Hays and Robert Bjork at U.C.L.A. that recently appeared in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition reveals that this worry is misplaced. People remember things better, longer, if they are given very challenging tests on the material, tests at which they are bound to fail. This work has implications beyond the classroom. Are you a scientist?

Student Assessment Rubrics | Standards Based Assessments Our performance material includes standards-based rubrics that define what work meets today's standards, allowing teachers (and students) to distinguish between different levels of performance. Our rubrics have four levels of performance: Novice, Apprentice, Practitioner (meets the standard) and Expert. Exemplars uses two types of rubrics: Standards-Based Assessment Rubrics are used by teachers to assess student work in Math, Science and Writing. Exemplars material includes both a general rubric as well as task-specific rubrics.Student Rubrics are used during peer- and self-assessments and feature kid-friendly language and symbols. Students can also use our Assessment Rubrics (and annotated anchor papers) to compare their work to during peer- and self-assessments. Back to top

Content Curation Tools What is Content Curation? As instructors, we are all information curators. How do you collect and share currently relevant content with your students? How do your students research and share information that they find with the rest of class? What tools do you use to manage or facilitate presentation of resources? Modern web tools make it easy for both students and instructors to contribute online discoveries to class conversations. How can I use Content Curation in My Class? Instructors are using online content curation tools in the classroom to: The following are some real-life examples of how content curation tools are being used in education. Pinterest is a pinboard-styled social photo sharing website. Storify is a way to tell stories using social media such as tweets, photos and videos. allows users to create and share their own themed magazines designed around a given topic. Get Started Using Content Curation Tools Additional Resources

How Teachers are Using Tumblr in the Classroom Tumblr is a web based social media platform that was designed to make it easier for people to share digital media with each other. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, where conversation is a common mode of communication, Tumblr is more about sharing content. It is a great resource and tool for people and professionals of every stripe. As a Course Web Site Here’s an example of a Creative Writing teacher who uses Tumblr as a course web site: Sharing (and Locating) Resources Tumblr doesn’t just make it easier for teachers to educate their students, it can be used as a resource sharing tool. As a Lesson in Content Credibility Tumblr can also be used as a lesson on using the Internet for research. Make a Pitch for Classroom Supplies Teachers are often responsible for funding some or all of their own classroom materials. There are lots of reasons to use Tumblr as a teacher. About Samantha Peters Print This Post

The 22 Digital Skills Every 21st Century Teacher Must Have One of the most popular articles I have written in this blog was about the 33 Digital Skills Every 21st Teacher should Have. This post has been used in several digital literacy courses in some universities in the States and also here in Canada, I also got it published in a couple of printed journals . Now that one year has elapsed since its first seeing the light I decided to revisit it again but this time adding more updates and organizing its content in a better and easy navigable way. The skills I have mentioned here are essential to every teacher ( and student ) using technology in class, at home , or for professional development purposes. It also contains the best web tools that you can use to better hone in the targeted skill under which they are featured .These web tools can also empower you with the necessary know-how to effectively leverage the power of technology in education. Create and Edit Audio Here are some tools for teachers to develop this skill :

Teachers Can Use Social Media to Enhance Learning Social media use has expanded to include even the world’s academic fraternity. College professors are suddenly using social media, mainly to connect with colleagues, to access news and appear in the buzz around it. What many don’t appreciate about social media is the fact that it can be used within a classroom situation to create more value to learning. This article gives you tips on how professors and teachers can use social media to improve their work and students' academic performance and success. Help them create blogs. Blogs were weblogs in the past. Create virtual offices. Let’s face it, not many students love to come to your offices for consultation or advice. Create Facebook Pages for your class. Facebook is the world’s largest social media platforms out there and if things were as they are, it’s here to stay. Teach them to network. Social media has become the mouth communication of today. Connect: Authored by: Sandra Miller See complete profile