No Excuse University - Assessment

Share your perspective on Lopez’s quote and statement above. Describe how your mindset has changed or been validated.

My mindset was validated by Lopez's statement that "assessment is not about you as a teacher, it's about your students". As the teacher I need to know if my students are learning and grasping the information that is presented to them. When moving forward to the next unit of a subject my assessments consist of a pre and post test. I explain to my students that the pre-test is going to help us as a class identify what it is we need to learn, enhance upon and master. The post-test answers those questions and let's us know if we can move onto the next unit or recap some of things we didn't grasp. It allows us as a class to work cooperatively with each other to reach our learning goals.

Consider the 4 questions Lopez lists under “Defending our Assessment Practices” (p.98). How might you use these questions in your current or anticipated practice? What value might it add to your practice by keeping these questions in mind?

Keeping these questions in the forefront of my mind will help me remember that assessments are meant to help me track my students progress. Not to determine if I'm a good teacher or how it will effect my evaluation. Sometimes teachers have so much pressure on them to perform that they forget the focus is on providing children with a quality education. The last two questions are relevant in the fact that sometimes teachers are given assessments from their literacy & math coaches that are truly irrelevant but your required to give it or risk being out of compliance. Sometimes the data it provides is not in alignment with the standards where teaching at the time and becomes wasted valuable learning time.

In what ways have you succeeded/failed to make students your partner in assessment?

I feel as though I have succeeded in making my students partners when it comes to their assessments. When school first started back in August the students didn't understand the importance of tracking their progress. But now they understand and they know if we as a class do well we can move forward. They also feel comfortable telling me if they feel we need to review certain content because they didn't grasp the information. I will admit I have a unique group of students this year. They are very vocal and have a lot of compassion for one another. They want to see each other succeed. I feel very fortunate to be in their presence everyday.