Assessment for Learning

Week 4 Discussion Topic (created by La Toya N. Kemp)

Key Strategies from the Video

The video provided five essential strategies that a teacher needs to put into place in order to ensure that an effective classroom environment is created to foster 21st century learning. While all are equally important and useful, the following strategies stood out to me:

Strategy #2: Engineering effective classroom discussions, tasks, and activities that elicit evidence of learning. The “no hands up” concept is such a great idea because it prevents

students that are eager to provide the answers to a teacher’s questions from monopolizing the entire class. It also provides an opportunity for the teacher to better assess the knowledge of everyone because hands will only go up when students want to ask a question, not answer one.

Strategy #3: Providing feedback that moves learners forward

It is important to encourage peer-to-peer feedback because it brings the focus back to the collaborative learning concept.

Strategy #4: Activating students as learning resources for one another. As with strategy #2, once a student poses a question, other students can participate by providing feedback or an answer to their peer. Adding the green, yellow, and red to the concept provides a relatable tool to assess the level of understanding among the class.

My Ideas About Formative and Summative Assessments

Both types of assessments evaluate the comprehension level, learning needs, strengths and weakness of the students, however, formative assessments are used to provide running feedback (ongoing) throughout a learning period. It helps the teacher to recognize certain trends, which may require them to alter their teaching method. For example, in the Khan video from discussion 2, the Los Altos school district created a color-coded visual dashboard, which provided a snapshot of each of their students ongoing learning. It provided data regarding the student’s mastery level of various subjects and also provided comparative charts.

In contrast, summative assessments provide a broader view of the entire learning period as a whole, sort of like a report card or final project. It answers the questions of how teaching/learning compares to whatever the standard of learning is and it identifies the success of the teaching/learning.

How to Implement Both Types of Assessments for an Effective Classroom Environment

Both assessments are vital tools needed to create an effective classroom environment. The overall goals will dictate which assessment tool to use. If the goal of the assessment is to improve learning by altering teaching methods to fit the needs of the students, then the formative assessment would be better suited. If the goal of the assessment is to look at the overall success of a program, then the summative assessments would be used.